If you’re considering dedicated server hosting, you may be looking for a bit more detail on how it works and what dedicated server hosting providers offer in comparison to shared hosting options.
In this blog, we explore dedicated server hosting, provide more information on how it’s set up and deployed, and discuss its benefits, to help you determine whether it’s the solution for you.
Dedicated hosting means you get the whole server to yourself; giving you exclusive use of the server, including root access. This gives you a lot of compute power and control, making dedicated hosting a suitable choice if you’re a business with processor-demanding, latency sensitive workloads or specific security requirements.
Dedicated hosting is considered a top-tier service and an upgrade from shared hosting, owing to a number of noteworthy business benefits, including:
More robust and customizable system architecture.
Higher levels of server uptime.
Improved latency and round-trip times (RTTs).
Faster response rates and loading speeds.
Increased application resiliency.
Greater flexibility to scale (up/down and out).
Tighter security and data privacy.
Since you won’t be sharing your server with other customers, switching to dedicated server hosting will increase the stability, reliability and performance of your application.
Servers.com gives you the choice of several dedicated server hosting options and configurations so you can self-manage upgrades and handle processor-demanding I/O-intensive workloads.
The nuts and bolts of dedicated hosting.
In order to understand how dedicated hosting works, we first need to run through how shared solutions are set up and why.
Whether it’s shared, virtual private server (VPS), or public cloud hosting, any type of shared server hosting works in a similar way–the hosting provider divides up a server and its resources among multiple customers.
1. Shared hosting
For shared options, the hosting provider creates separate user accounts on one physical machine, without isolation. This is usually good enough for low-bandwidth users, but soon starts to crack under the weight of applications with high volumes of traffic.
2. VPS hosting
With VPS servers, the hosting provider uses a special virtualization technology called a hypervisor to “split” the server into multiple virtual machines (VMs) that behave as independent accounts on the physical server. Each VM has its own OS and cannot interact with any other VMs on the server.
Customers can then pick a hosting plan and server resources are allocated to their virtual instance in complete isolation from other VPS customers. As a result, VPS customers can separate their hosting environments from other users and customize their instance, even though they’re sitting on the same physical server as multiple other VPS customers.
3. Public cloud hosting
In the case of public cloud hosting, customers can spin up virtual instances (VMs) on a physical server, which can be a subset of a cluster of servers.
Cloud servers provide the same OS, functionality and resources of a traditional physical server, but like VPS, also use a hypervisor to divide and deliver server resources to multiple virtual machines and remote customers.
With all shared options, even if you have isolated instances with virtualization, you’re still sharing a server with multiple customers–opening yourself up to the potential performance issues and security mishaps associated with multi-tenant hosting.
In comparison, a dedicated server host will lease an entire physical server to a single user (also referred to as single-tenancy) without the need to use virtualization technology or set up multiple user accounts.
As we’ve already discussed, this gives you complete administrative access to the machine, it’s not shared with any other customers, and its resources (RAM, disk space, CPU, and bandwidth) are, therefore, only available to you.
‘Dedicated’ hosting providers tend to offer a suite of different servers with different specifications, which you can then customize. For example, you could go for bare metal, with nothing pre-configured; or choose a server spec that’s set up for a specific purpose such as gaming or video streaming.
A dedicated hosting provider will usually select the chassis provider (Dell, HP, Supermicro, etc.) and CPU, which are typically fixed, but you’ll have the freedom to customize and add RAM, as well as upgrade networking and storage options in a self-service manner.
You’ll also have options for managed and unmanaged dedicated servers hosting, which offer varying levels of server management, administration, maintenance and support.
Depending on your level of service, a dedicated server hosting provider would also take care of a number of things in the background in order to offer dedicated hosting, such as:
Data center space, power and cooling.
Data center support staff and network engineers.
Purchasing and maintenance of servers and network equipment.
Purchasing OS licences, alongside installing/upgrading them.
Fixing server firmware issues and sometimes DDoS protection.
They then factor these costs into the monthly fee charged to their customers.
Even though each physical server is dedicated to a single customer in dedicated hosting, there are some elements of the overall infrastructure that are still shared. Typically, this includes data center networking equipment, such as: switches, routers and Internet Service Provider (ISP) internet connectivity, shared between all customers renting servers within the providers network.
A good dedicated servers hosting provider will also partner with data centers that have a high number of quality carriers, clouds and IXPs available from within their facilities to connect your network to.
Dedicated server hosting is the top-of-the-line option that’s ideal for demanding applications that receive thousands of resource intensive, concurrent requests.
Understanding how dedicated server hosting works, and how it compares to shared options, is critical in making an informed decision regarding the most appropriate and future-proofed hosting for your business.
Contact our team today to discuss your requirements.