People usually misunderstand the distinction between VPS hosting and cloud hosting. Both of these are ideal options when your website has outgrown shared hosting. They offer you higher performance and efficiency than shared hosting, but each model has its distinct advantages and disadvantages.
Summary of VPS vs. Cloud Hosting
Virtual Private Server (VPS) is essentially a machine, running on a single physical server separated into many smaller virtual servers, such that each client has their own dedicated portion of server resources.
VPS hosting offers you the benefits of a dedicated server at a small cost. With VPS, you share the server with a number of other users; but unlike shared hosting, there is no direct competition over resources such as CPU, storage, or RAM. Moreover, you can configure the operating system and the applications you require.
VPS hosting dedicates resources from a single server to your infrastructure and data, while cloud hosting may distribute your resources across several physical servers. This approach ensures that the host can support you from a virtually unlimited network of servers. A wide network of cloud servers will protect the website from malfunction, even if one of the servers crashes.
If you’re looking for more control over your website and have the technical skills to set up a customized platform, VPS hosting is perfect for you. If you need the flexibility to improve efficiency and satisfy traffic spikes, you may want to switch your website to cloud hosting.
Sometimes (though, much less commonly) a VPS is also called a VDS or Virtual Dedicated Server.
This article gives you an idea about these two hosting options to help you choose the best hosting service for your website, applications, or services.
On a VPS solution, configuration options include applications, security, partitioning, backup, PHP versions, etc. Cloud hosting does not provide as much customization as VPS hosting. An advantage of cloud here is that typically, you don’t need as much expertise to initialize a cloud-based server. However, if you need a platform with unique customization requirements, you should probably choose VPS over the cloud.
Cloud hosting provides standard customization options, such as setting up firewalls, modifying the network architecture, and introducing load balancing. However, you need to spread functions across several servers, which can mean having less control over some of the hosting settings.
The customization of VPS hosting is close to that of a dedicated server. Since the server partition is segregated and the data is stored in a centralized location, you have full root access and total control over the operating system as well as the website and all software.
Security of VPS Compared to Cloud
Different forms of hosting have different security issues and advantages. You will also get differing degrees of security measures from various hosting services. The level of security also depends on the steps you take to keep your server secure.
Though VPS hosting is not as safe as dedicated hosting, it is more secure than shared hosting. All your files are protected and inaccessible to any users of the parent server, even if another domain on the server is infected or corrupted with malware.
With VPS hosting, you will be responsible for your own security customization and will need to configure the VPS server correctly to avoid important security vulnerabilities.
In certain cases, since the cloud hosting system is physically distributed and your host is completely web-based, it is more likely to be a target for malicious attacks. However, major cloud hosting providers usually provide scaled and high-level security measures to protect you, most probably better than what you can afford or create yourself. Though remember, those cloud services cost more as well.
On the other hand, cloud hosting is much more robust against volume attacks and traffic or usage surges. Especially against DDoS attacks, cloud services usually fare much better than you would on your own with one VPS or even a distributed collection of them. But for most intents and purposes, you’re not likely to face DDoS attacks and you can easily protect yourself against most other types.
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Scalability and Flexibility
As your business expands, it is crucial that your hosting service can quickly scale to meet your needs. The scalability of a VPS is limited to the physical servers on which it is hosted.
The physical server has only a certain amount of resources that it can offer. But the whole point of VPS is that you don’t need that many resources, or you would have got a dedicated server. When in need, at first you simply upgrade your plan, and then you can always add more VPS and distribute tasks and load among them. When your needs have outgrown the scale of VPS services, it’s time for you to get one or more dedicated servers or migrate to the cloud.
Where VPS may deliver a moderate amount of scaling and you’re bound to eventually hit the limit, cloud hosting offers you almost unlimited scalability not available in other options.
Generally speaking, VPS is a cheaper solution compared to the cloud and is more suitable for your starting and growing phases. When you have grown enough, or have reached a rapid growth rate, that will be the time to think about going cloud.
Performance, Reliability, and Availability
If you are migrating your website from a shared hosting service, the speed, stability, and durability of both VPS and Cloud hosting are much superior to shared hosting. Until cloud hosting became popular, VPS was the best-performing alternative that you could get without paying for a dedicated server.
VPS hosting’s efficiency depends on the provider. Generally, VPS guarantees a set level of performance and reliability since a predetermined set of resources are dedicated to your virtual server. In addition, VPS performance is proportionate to the number of server slices acquired.
Although VPS promises improved performance, the likelihood of your website going offline or running into a resource problem is slightly higher with VPS than with cloud hosting.
The Cloud environment offers a flexible hosting setup and a high degree of website efficiency. Since it is decentralized, there will be no impact on performance when one unit goes down.
Cloud hosting also offers more flexibility when you face traffic spikes. It is capable of scaling up RAM (memory) and processing power from a collection of servers and has an outstanding capacity to manage even the most unpredictable traffic spikes.
VPS, being a more cost-effective solution, may not deliver as much availability and reliability as cloud hosting. A particular slot or resource may go down in any crash scenario, and an application or website in that specific space will be inaccessible without redundant online access until the problem is resolved.
Cost of VPS Compared to Cloud Hosting
Although VPS and cloud hosting have all of the advantages of dedicated hosting, they are far more affordable than dedicated servers.
VPS offers a stable monthly cost. You pick your plan and every month you obtain the agreed amount of resources. The cost of VPS hosting depends on the resource caps, the server requirements, and the amount of support you need. VPS is cheaper than cloud hosting.
Costs for cloud hosting may be unpredictable due to unknown traffic or usage surges. It costs more than VPS because you pay for a lot of infrastructure, complicated networking, and the resulting uptime guarantee. For cloud hosting, you just pay for the services you use, and the fee is usually calculated on a per-use basis.
Both VPS and cloud hosting provide you with higher performance and greater reliability than shared hosting. Through VPS, you also share the server with several other users, while cloud hosting spreads the resources across a number of physical servers.
Cloud hosting does not provide as much customization as VPS hosting, and both have their strong points regarding security. In exchange, since you are not bound to the physical limitations of a single server, cloud hosting provides greater flexibility than VPS hosting.
A cloud hosting environment, more technically known as IaaS, short for Infrastructure as a Service offers flexible hosting configuration, a high standard of website performance, and more flexibility when you face traffic spikes. It’s more suited to highly fluctuating usage. Cloud is more expensive than VPS, though you only pay for the resources you use.