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Web Hosting Companies - Look Before You Leap

Jul 26, 2008
Of course you do know! That - Web hosting companies are in the business of providing space, bandwidth and the internet connection of their servers to small internet business. Larger corporations may have their own network infrastructure and therefore in most cases do not require these services. But for most of us who want a piece of the web, I guess we have no choice but instead to "rent" web hosting for our sites.

Hosting plans vary widely. There are some which are free; and others which charge as much as $100 and up each month. There are those who offer a very small amount of disk space on their servers and very little bandwidth. Some offer a full complement of services including backup services, administration, design help and much more. In short the choices presented to you by web hosting companies can vary as much as you can possibly think of.

Web hosting companies often provide a choice of shared or dedicated hosting, shared hosting means that you will share server space with other sites, starting anywhere from a few to a few thousand other sites. This lets the web hosting firm to keep its overhead low. A lot of sites are simple enough not to require anything more than this. However, if your site is one which plans to grow, dedicated hosting is something you may want to consider.

As you may have guessed from its name, a dedicated server is one which hosts only one website or domain name. You can put as many sites as you want on this server and you have control and access to the server. If you choose to do so, you may also take over the administration duties of the server. This can save money on the cost of hiring an administrator, but can also take up a lot of your time. Unless you are an expert, you may want to leave the administration to the pros like me...(just playing)

Even thought some web hosting companies promise to provide a little help to help you manage and administer your dedicated server, you'll need a little expertise of your own in order to take care of administration and technical side of managing a dedicated server. You should at the least be aware of how to use FTP, set up email accounts, perform backups and some other common tasks.

If your site is growing rapidly in size and complexity, it may be a good idea to start using a database to keep track of all of the information on your site. This requires even more expertise, both technical and creative. Setting up a database can be fairly simple. However, designing a database which will meet your needs and provide good performance will require careful advance planning. Not everyone is cut out for database development, especially those who are more artistically minded. Of course, not everyone possesses the temperament for any sort of website duties, count me out!

There are plenty of other administrative tasks which need to be done as well. These include maintaining domain names, handling registration, managing disk space and a lot of other duties which are not really to the taste of many people. In order to tackle this work, you will need a basic understanding of the workings of the internet, including knowing how DNS operates. This provides a solid background in how these tasks fit into the broader picture of website administration.

When you are looking for good web hosting companies to get your website going, give consideration to all of these factors and determine what your capabilities and willingness are with regards to the work of administering the site. Be sure to investigate all possibilities, benefits and features of most Web hosting companies before you sign on to any web hosting company.
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