What is Web Hosting and web servers?
Web hosting is a technical process or activity that provides websites or web pages with storage space and access on the internet and then allows it to appear. Web hosting services enable individuals and organizations to post their website or web page on the Internet.
If you have a website and want to make it appeared on the internet, you need to put your website files on a web server. Every website owner can not set up and manage the web server as setting up and managing a server is not only expensive but also difficult. That is why purchasing web hosting is the right option for most website owners. Purchasing web hosting allows site owners to rent a space on a web server.
What is a Web Host or Web Hosting Service provider?
A web host, or web hosting service provider, is a business or organization that sets up some special kinds of computers with special technologies (commonly called a server) and provides the technologies and professional services needed for a website or webpage to be viewed on the Internet. Websites are hosted, or stored, on these servers.
When Internet users put your website address into their web browser, then their PC is successfully linked to your web server and then your WebPages are delivered to them through the browser.
Most web hosting companies require that you own your domain name in order to host with them. If you do not already have your own domain name, the hosting companies generally help you purchase one with it.
Types of Web Hosting Services
Various kinds of web hosting services are available to host your website. Before you sign up for web hosting services, you need to understand what type of service your website or websites require. The kind of server your business needs, the type of services a web host offers and your budget are very necessary to bring into high consideration.
Hosting options available are:
- Free Hosting
- Shared Hosting
- VPS Hosting
- Dedicated Hosting
- Collocated Hosting
Free Hosting Services
Some companies offer free hosting services but they want you to purchase your domain from them, some others offer you a free subdomain under them, such as. But be careful as you cannot transfer these free subdomains. Free web hosting is a good choice when someone just wants to create a website a website only for fun. In the free hosting environment, you will often find connection speed, slow. Your website can be down frequently. And sometimes you will find advertising banners appeared automatically on your website.
Shared Hosting Services
In a shared hosting plan, your website is hosted with other websites on a shared server. You and other websites owner share the physical server and the software applications within the server. That is the very reason that shared hosting services are cheap because the cost spent on operating the server is shared between you and other website owners whose websites are hosted on that particular server. This plan also you have some limitations including a limit on disk storage, bandwidth, and CPU consumption.
VPS Hosting Services:
VPS stands for a virtual private server. Under the VPS hosting plan, your website is placed with some other websites on a server like a shared hosting plan, but here the number of websites on the server is less comparatively. Here you have root and admin access to its own operating system. Here you can install specific packages or software that is not provided by shared hosting.
VPS Server in terms of shared hosting and Dedicating hosting: In terms of root and admin access, A VPS hosting mimics a dedicated server but within a shared hosting environment. You can technically take it as a middle phase of both shared hosting and dedicated hosting.
How does VPS Hosting Work?
The technology of VPS hosting is similar just to that of VMware or Virtual Box. These programs make you able to run several virtualized operating systems on a single machine. For better understanding you can take the example: When your desktop is running Windows 7, at the same time you can also run some other operating systems such as Linux or Windows XP without restarting your computer.
Dedicated Hosting Services:
Under the dedicated hosting plan, a website owner has the entire webserver to himself. The website owner has full control over it. Your website gets full access to the webserver as there is no other website to share your server. It means that dedicated web hosting offers website owner capabilities and resources of an entire server that is completely devoted to you and your websites. This dedicated hosting environment allows for faster performance, enough bandwidth, and memory to handle large traffic, interaction, and any kind of multimedia as it is only you who have all the server’s resources entirely. Dedicating hosting plan is a good choice for a website that requires a lot of system resources higher level of security.
Under the term of Collocated Hosting plan, website owner or business person purchases their own web server and house at any web host’s facilities. In this way, you are the owner of your server and are responsible for the server itself. You have the capability to install any application and scripts. It means that you have full control over the webserver.
Similarities and variations with all web hosting Services
All of these web hosting account types are similar on the basis of the fact that these accounts all provide you a webserver to run your website on. But web hosting accounts vary on the basis of setup, the features they offer, and different levels of customization a website owner can have with each one.
Reseller hosting -This reseller web service is geared for resellers who want to resell their own web hosting service and webmasters who develop various websites and provide web hosting services for their clients. This reseller web hosting is also a good option for those persons who have multiple websites as this hosting environment makes it easier to manage various websites under one control panel.
What is ASP Web Hosting?
ASP web hosting refers to web hosting companies who provide support for ASP, or Active Server Page.
What is ASP?
ASP/Active Server Pages are HTML pages with embedded ASP scripts. ASP scripts are processed on the server before the page is sent to the visitor’s browser. ASP allows you to create dynamic database-driven pages, a visitor can access data in a database and interact with page objects such as Active X or Java components.
How does ASP work?
When you type in a URL in the Address box of your browser, you are asking the webserver to send the file to your computer. If the file is standard HTML, then the file that your web browser receives will look exactly the same as it did on the webserver. However, if an ASP file is sent to your computer from the server, it first runs the HTML code, then the ASP code. The ASP code could be anything such as the current time, date, or other such information.
How to find an ASP web host?
You will need to find a web host who will host your website on a Windows server. It is safer to host your ASP pages on a Windows server as they are more stable and most ASP components work specific to Windows. You also need to consider if your website uses a database, such as SQL and Access. Make sure your web host provides support for the type of database your website requires.
Domain Name Server (DNS)
Each computer on the Internet is assigned a unique address, called an IP address. A typical IP address looks like this: 199.123.456.7
It is very difficult to keep in mind the IP addresses of all the websites we visit daily. Words are easier to remember than strings of numbers. This is where domain names come into the picture. When you visit a website, all you need to know is its URL. Computers remember numbers, and DNS helps us convert the URL into an IP address that the computer can understand.
When you type in domain.com into your browser, the browser first needs to get the IP address of www.domain.com. The browser contacts a DNS server to query the location of the server where the webpages are stored. Think of it as a directory service of IP address.
The classic phonebook directory analogy, you need to find the company “Joe’s Bookstore”, you look in the directory and see that it is located on 123 Main Street. Then you go to the address to visit the store.
Which Web Server – Linux or Windows?
The truth of the matter is these two web server platforms are functionally equivalent, it all depends on what are your hosting needs, and what are you most comfortable with.
Both platforms differ in cost, ease of use, versatility and stability. Windows costs more than Linux.
|Linux||Allows for running scripts written in PHP, Perl, Python and other Unix-originated languages. It usually supports MySQL and PostgreSQL databases.|
|Windows||Allows for running ASP scripts and utilizing .NET and other Microsoft technologies. It supports Microsoft SQL Server and Access database.|
If your website does not require any scripting support, you should choose Linux hosting because they are more economical. However, if your website needs scripting and database support, you should choose the platform that supports the technologies you use.
What are the Features of a Hosting Plan
The basic features of a hosting plan include:
All hosting accounts offer a certain amount of disk space that you can use to store your web files. It is recommended that you have some sort of estimate on what you need for various tasks. How much space will you need for your emails, web files, databases, etc? By breaking down your usage, you can better estimate how much space you should go for.
Email accounts are a common feature of hosting, especially if you are hosting a domain. There are three main types of email accounts: POP3, forwarding, and aliases.
POP3 accounts are the traditional inboxes. You have space on the server to store your emails, and at the same time, you can use an email program to download your mail. Each login and password combination usually equates to one account.
Forwarding mail accounts are useful if you are employing the service of another company to filter your emails for you. Rather than storing your emails on your mail server, emails are redirected to another email address.
Aliases accounts are similar to forwarding mail accounts. Some hosts allow you to setup a catch-all alias, which is often used to collect emails sent to addresses not recognized by your mail server.
What is FTP Account and FTP Access?
After you have created your web pages on your computer, you need to transfer those files to your web server. The files are transferred to the server by use of FTP.
Can I host my website on my personal computer?
Yes, you can. But before you do so, there are limitations you need to take into consideration:
You should know how to setup a WWW server software on your computer. This is a software that allows Internet users to access the web files on your computer.
Your Internet service provider supports you running websites on your home computer. You will need to investigate your bandwidth quota.
Your computer has to stay on at all times. Each time you turn it off or reboot, your website will become unavailable.
Your website will load slowly as home internet connections are not designed for serving web pages.
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