If you are new to purchasing hosting for your website you are probably wondering exactly what is a web hosting service and how to choose web hosting?
Well we have prepared this article for you which will hopefully answer all your questions. We will guide you from the very basics of web hosting services. Don’t worry it will all be written very simply especially for beginners.
So, what is a web hosting service?
Think about files and folders on your computer. They are actually stored on the hard disk of your computer. An internet page is a file just like a Microsoft Word page or a picture on your computer.
Just like your computer has to store these files so do all the internet pages need to be stored on a computer as well.
The only difference between an internet page is that it has to be accessible to the public. In order for this to happen the computer they are stored on needs to be a bit different from your home computer and has to be connected to the internet with a faster connection than your home internet connection.
The computer that the internet pages are stored on is called a server. A collection of internet pages is called a Website, and the internet network itself is all the internet pages in the world.
Why do we need website hosting?
Technically you can connect your computer to your home internet and turn it into a network server, but it is not practical because:
- Your home internet is not strong enough and won’t be able to withstand providing service to many internet surfers at the same time.
- Availability of our computers. Sometimes our computers are switched off or the server is down or so many other issues that can pop up. Every time one of these things happen our site won’t work and will be unavailable to the internet surfers.
Exactly for these reasons there are web hosting companies. These web hosting companies have incredibly powerful servers and these servers are connected to the internet with very strong and fast connections which allow for massive amounts of surfers onto the websites at the same time.
What else can a website hosting server do?
There are many more services that an internet server can provide besides storing websites:
- Security against hackers
- Email services
- And lots more.
Is there a difference between different types of hosting services?
Absolutely! There are so many different hosting companies and internet servers. A basic promotional website which is just one internet page needs significantly less power than a large international website with loads of traffic.
There are significant differences between the different web hosting packages.
Amount of space you get on the internet. (Also called diskspace)
This is the amount of space that your internet files receive. A basic promotional website will not take up more than 30 - 40 mega of space. But some websites will weigh a Giga and more and they will need a lot more diskspace than you.
Bandwidth - amount of information that needs to be passed
Another factor is the amount of information or content that the server needs to provide to the visitors. If for example your home page is 1 MB and you had over 1000 visitors the server will need to supply 1000 MB.
Our hosting package will always tell you in advance the limit of bandwidth you can use and the monthly amount of information the server can provide. Sometimes you will need to buy a larger package if you have too many visitors.
What do you need to know when buying website storage on a server?
- Speed: The faster the speed of the server the faster your website will function. Make sure you test web hosting company speed and also read hosting reviews from other clients.
- Support: Make sure that you get technical support from the company that stores your website. If something goes wrong you want to know that you are in good hands that will help you.
- Security: Make sure the web hosting company provides Backup of your files and pages and security against hacking.
- Your neighbors! Most web hosting companies provide shared hosting. This means that a tens if not thousands of different websites are hosted on the same server. This can cause issues sometimes and you must know this.
Deciding where to host your website is not a simple decision and you should definitely check that you are getting everything you need before signing up.
The best advice we can give you is to read the reviews on our website of those that have gone through this before you.
You can check out best hosting companies as well - you have all the information spread out before you- from pricing and up until bandwidth and diskspace capacity.
Now that we have gone over all the basics, I am sure you can answer the question yourself: What is a web hosting service?
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