Your Quick Guide: Cloud Web Hosting Explained
As web hosting becomes more and more prevalent in today's world, it pays to choose a service that offers you the best value for your money especially in cloud web hosting. In this article, we will guide you through the basics of everything you need to know what cloud hosting is all about as well as a comprehensive guide of our selection of the best cloud web hosting providers and why you should switch to the cloud today!
What Is Cloud Hosting?
Cloud hosting is a network of infrastructures and servers that use software to split a single physical server into several virtual servers or sometimes referred to as virtual machines (VMs). It is one of the most accessible means for computers to utilize extensive computing resources without any large infrastructure and equipment.
Through this, customers can maximize whatever resources they already have, or they can go even bigger because additional capacity is readily available for usage. Throughout the years, there has been a rise in businesses and other enterprises that have started to make use of cloud hosting for their everyday needs because these servers can be used for application development, web hosting, etc.
For websites that have developed issues regarding the resources provided by their current shared hosting providers, cloud hosting is often their go-to solution. These issues usually occur when a website with extreme popularity, and often causes higher traffic, strains the resources supplied by the shared server they use. Another commonly used alternative whenever these issues would occur is the usage of dedicated hosting wherein a website runs on its very own server.
However, you must have a little background on technological aspects when you go for dedicated hosting. It is also relatively more expensive. That is why cloud hosting is the perfect route for these kinds of dilemmas because it has the capabilities of dedicated hosting without the additional complexities.
To fully understand cloud hosting, it is necessary to have a background on the various types of cloud hosting offered by various cloud web hosting providers such as:
1. Public Cloud
Public clouds utilize data splitting and security methods to ensure that private data is not shared easily. Through this, clients will not be able to access information that is not theirs because of the cloud platform management software. Consequently, Public Cloud is usually configured by the user via a control panel or RESTful API.
In just mere seconds, you can quickly create cloud servers and even delete them. Public Cloud’s scalability also enables users to configure and maintain their setup without needing outside help each time minor changes or upgrades are required, which is also cost-efficient because you only pay for what you use.
Furthermore, Public Cloud can be easily used for file backups, hosting WordPress, and other types of websites, email servers, file sharing, and many more.
2. Private Cloud
With private Cloud, also known as private virtualization, your resources are securely protected through its cloud platform management service. This kind of protection is beneficial, and an excellent choice, especially if privacy is your utmost priority.
You also have the liberty to choose if you want to host your Private Cloud offsite using the provider or within the grounds with the client. But regardless of what you choose, Private Clouds still offer the same useful services provided by a typical Public Cloud but with the upgraded security of more dedicated hardware.
A lot of service providers today allow you to personally custom design the type of private cloud setup that you prefer. Private Cloud is undoubtedly the best choice if you manage sensitive data that cannot allow any downtime.
3. Hybrid Cloud
Hybrid Cloud provides you with the best of both worlds. Through the Hybrid Cloud, you utilize the same algorithm used by both the Private and Public Clouds. In tasks that are very important and deal with sensitive data, you can use a Private Cloud mechanism.
Meanwhile, you can use the Public Cloud with less critical workloads that need constant monitoring. Either way, your confidential databases are always secured.
4. Managed Cloud
Managed Cloud is usually the perfect fit if you need a more complex configuration but do not have time to spare or technical resources. Through this, cloud technicians configure and set up everything and return it to you after everything has already been done. Service providers such as Atlantic.net even integrate an intrusion detection system and other safety measures to ensure an optimally configured server environment.
What Is the Difference Between Web Hosting and Cloud Hosting?
Cloud Web Hosting and Web Hosting are similar to each other because they both use several servers to host websites. However, the main difference among the two is that cloud web hosting involves large data centers when it comes to cloud hosting, and it utilizes a more extensive array of servers. A web-hosted platform
often lacks the edge of what websites backed with the cloud has.
But if you are curious to know which is better among Cloud Hosting and Web Hosting, it is worth acknowledging that the latter is relatively cheaper, but the former offers you the most out of your money. Cloud Hosting provides a more increased performance due to the solutions that they provide for data redundancy. The flexibility of using the cloud setup enables you to adjust the resources needed for your website without the added hassle and pressure quickly.
What Are the Classification of Cloud Services?
1. Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS)
IaaS is considered a less inclusive cloud offering because providers do not include any software with IaaS. Instead, a provider will allow access to hardware resources, usually in the form of virtualized server resources. In this offering, customers are the ones responsible for installing their own software whenever the need arises.
Moreover, since the software is not preinstalled, IaaS becomes more customizable. Clients get to have full control over the software, making it more suited for complicated IT projects.
2. Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS)
In a PaaS cloud offering, the provider will provide the consumer with everything from the software environment they need to the hardware behind the software. Simply put, the consumer accesses an entire platform as a service whenever they like. PaaS is relatively easier to use than IaaS and is more convenient for clients who are skilled in certain technical aspects.
Is Cloud Hosting Worthwhile?
To accurately answer this question, you need first to know the benefits of using cloud hosting to assess personally if this service is worth the money you put out. Web service hosting is a complex topic that leaves a lot of people confused.
That is why we have made a comprehensive list of the positive things that cloud hosting possesses to guide and help you know the factors that make cloud hosting worthwhile and easily help you decide what the best cloud hosting provider for you is.
When you host a website using a single server, it automatically comes with a set of risks because the entire site can crash if even one aspect of the server fails.
Consequently, cloud services operate in a virtualized state with arrangements for redundancy to prevent a sole point of failure from crashing a website, which means that the cloud will continue to pull resources from the network even if an individual server goes offline.
One of the primary risks in establishing physical areas where you set up your servers and other technical machinery is the risk of theft or invasion. But by using the cloud, you eradicate the threat of any physical security issue because they are situated in remote areas with highly secure data centers.
The most distinctive thing about hosting a website using cloud services is that you only pay for the resources you are using compared to dedicated servers where clients pay for more resources than what they actually use. Cloud web hosting providers make you pay for the resources you have utilized, releasing you from the burden of being billed for unused or irrelevant services and other hidden charges.
4. Scalability and Immediacy
The basic concept of scalability is that whenever you experience a sudden need in additional resources to support your busy website, you can quickly request support and an increase in provisions to be provided without having to wait for customer service to assist you tirelessly.
This immediacy is made possible because cloud web hosting providers usually have a massive infrastructure of networks that consist of several physical servers distributed over strategic locations. And whenever you do not need it anymore, it is also easier to retract the additional provisions you have requested.
This mechanism, set up by your host web service, ensures that anyone in various locations can be provided with quick and instant access to the website’s resources and save you from the stress of a degraded site performance due to seamless and immediate assistance.
What Is the Best Cloud Hosting Services?
There isn't any definitive answer to the question of the best cloud web hosting service because the answer depends on you. However, it helps to know the key features that each cloud hosting provider offers to their potential customers to assess if what they offer coincides with your vision and budget.
In this list, we have compiled our top three cloud hosting service out today with a guide to help you choose what is best for you. We have also included the key features and the price listing, and website for a more comprehensive viewing experience to help you with your blog, small business website, etc..
1. Amazon AWS
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is one of the top subsidiaries of tech giants Amazon that provides on-demand cloud computing platforms and web services hosting amassing an annual revenue of around $20 billion in the last few years.
Nowadays, several enterprises ranging from media and small business ventures to massive real estate businesses use AWS for their website and daily cloud web hosting needs.
The majority of the servers of AWS are Windows and Linux-based. Amazon AWS also provides a particular cloud web tier package where you can use some services for a year without paying for anything so even a money-back guarantee seems futile.
Packed with a customizable website control panel that caters to your every specification, AWS is truly one of the top-tier service providers that offer endless possibilities. Aside from their unmatched scalability, they also have over 30 data centers in strategic locations designed to make access more accessible and more convenient.
Furthermore, in terms of customer service assistance, they provide an impressive experience. Equipped with a competent staff, the AWS customer service team will surely address your concerns with the needed care you deserve through email support and video guides.
Although no exact amount is placed in AWS cloud web hosting solutions because of the nature of their customizability of preferred package, they have integrated an AWS Pricing Calculator on their website that allows you to estimate prices.
They also have a TCO Calculator that gives you the option to evaluate the savings from using AWS and comparing against on-premises and co-location environments.
This tool considers all the costs needed to run a solution and provides a realistic comparison of your expenses. Furthermore, they have three billing models, namely:
2. Microsoft Azure
To keep up with the competition from Amazon, Microsoft created MS Azure to level the playing field. Backed with 13 distinct aspects of cloud computing, MS Azure provides over 600 services for better quality and performance and raking 16.8% in market shares in less than a decade.
Azure's webs servers run several databases such as MySQL, Java, Python, NodeJS, Python, and they also support Windows and Linux-based configurations. Moreover, Azure's scalability is so reliable that it enables you to have several options for customization that suit your preference.
Their cloud provider offers you everything you need to build, test, deploy, and manage your web projects. One of the greatest things about Azure is that it allows users to avail of their platform without spending on anything for around one year so even a money-back guarantee seems kind of useless with this very promising offer.
Furthermore, MS also ensures customers of efficient customer support by offering readily available phone operators, a ticketing system, and a support center to solve the most common server queries. They also provide paid assistance to maximize your cloud experience.
The cost of business accounts depends on the preferred setup, but these configurations usually go as low as an affordable entry-level package of $30/mo to kickstart your project.
3. Google Cloud
Google’s recognizability and prominence around the world are undeniable; that is why it is no wonder that they have also made their entry to the cloud web hosting arena. With Google Cloud, over 4 million customers have been receiving topnotch services from the tech giant.
Furthermore, well-known global brands have also relied on Google Cloud for their needs, such as PayPal, Twitter, and Bloomberg, and earning a market share of 8%.
Boasting a quality toolset, Google Cloud provides a wide range of tools, such as cloud object storage and app engine, that is guaranteed to cater to your needs regardless of the industry which makes them one of the best cloud web hosting providers.
They also have an impressive 20 data center locations strategically positioned to ensure better server connectivity. Compared to other competing cloud web hosting services, Google Cloud possesses a comprehensive customer support structure.
Just like its counterparts, it is hard to set an exact package price for Google Cloud web hosting services. However, you can also make use of its free 1-year trial that makes the concept of a money-back guarantee look funny. But usually, entry-level hosting plans and packages start at around $45.
Can I Use AWS For Web Hosting?
Yes, you can use AWS for web hosting services. It is one of the most popular cloud web hosting platforms globally that offers optimum speed and advanced features for installed applications.
However, just like with any aspect of life, when choosing the features and specific services that you want, it is always the best choice to research first to know how you can achieve your goals without exceeding your expected budget.
However, you will need a bit of technical knowledge to host your application on AWS. You will need to know some manual management processes before hosting your site on AWS.
But if you are not technologically inclined, you will still be able to host your applications using managed cloud hosting solutions.
Using AWS also has its set of benefits such as broad platform support, strategically located data centers, scalability, and flexible pricing models.
Explore Endless Possibilities
Conversations revolving around topics such as hosting cloud, scalability, shared hosting, and many more can be daunting for many people because they are relatively technical terms. However, if you have a venture that you want to improve, you should explore cloud web hosting.
Just remember that as you explore the world of the hosting cloud and its complexities, never forget to do your research. Once you choose the best Cloud Web Hosting service provider for you, the possibilities are endless.