The Differences Between VPS and Dedicated Hosting

Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting is an intermediate between shared hosting, in which many websites share the server’s resources, and dedicated hosting in which an entire physical server is dedicated to one customer and is not shared with anyone else. VPS and dedicated hosting have a number of similarities and may even look the same to the uninitiated.

VPS hosting can be seen as a high-end type of shared hosting, with just a few customers sharing a server, instead of many hundreds in shared hosting. In other words, VPS hosting allocates a larger amount of server resources to each customer than shared hosting. It is more expensive than shared hosting, but it is also more reliable.

Access to Resources

VPS hosting guarantees that resources will always be available for your website but the central processing unit (CPU) of the main host node is shared between customers and may not be shared equally, and so is not necessarily always guaranteed for your use.

Dedicated hosting gives you sole access to and total control of a physical server and its CPU. Dedicated hosting generally also gives you a choice of CPUs, and there could be as many as eight CPU cores available for your use. Since the server is dedicated to your website, its performance cannot be affected by anyone else, unless the entire network to which your server is connected is attacked in some way.

RAM and Bandwidth

VPS and dedicated hosting both give you dedicated amounts of RAM and bandwidth, but in dedicated hosting the RAM is on a server only you control and can therefore be upgraded easily, while VPS hosting gives you virtual RAM which is not easy to upgrade.

Bandwidth features are the same for both, which means your hosting package will include a bandwidth limit, and once that is used up you will have to buy more, but the advantage over shared hosting is that spikes in traffic can be accommodated, while with shared hosting a spike may result in your site being shut down temporarily.

Cost

VPS costs more than shared hosting but much less than dedicated hosting, and this makes it easily affordable for most webmasters. VPS hosting plans are available offering a wide range of features and prices, and the most comprehensive packages may approach the cost of dedicated hosting, so it pays to shop around to get exactly the right plan for you. As your business grows you can easily upgrade to a VPS plan with more features.

Dedicated hosting plans are usually less flexible and more expensive than VPS. Both VPS and dedicated hosting are usually cheaper to set up than shared hosting because payment is monthly rather than annually.

Priority Service

Dedicated hosting is the most expensive hosting option, but if you choose this option you will be treated as a priority customer in most cases. Some web hosts offer only limited technical support because you are assumed to understand how to manage your server effectively, but if support is included, you will be given top priority and your request for help will be handled promptly. VPS customers are generally given priority over shared hosting customers.