By Jennifer Marsh
Jennifer Marsh is a software developer, programmer and technology writer and occasionally blogs for Rackspace Hosting.
Virtual private servers (VPS) are often lumped in with cloud solutions when users shop around for improved cloud hosting. In fact, VPS and cloud servers are two different animals, each having its pros and cons. Cloud servers bring better scalability, resources, support and reliability than VPS services.
Scalability with Cloud Hosting
When a business owner thinks of purchasing a hosting plan, usually the owner thinks about a dedicated server running only a web application. A VPS can facilitate dozens of websites on one server, but is limited by the server’s hardware. If the business grows, the owner must upgrade the server hardware — otherwise suffer in performance.
With cloud hosting, resources are shared within a datacenter that can span hundred, even thousands of servers. So when new hardware is needed, a server is taken offline and upgraded, but the remaining servers keep the business web app running seamlessly.
Better Performance for Server Resources
One maintenance task of locally hosted web services is the monitoring of daily performance of CPU and RAM. Some businesses mistakenly run resource-intensive software on the same server. For instance, small businesses try to cut costs and run a web server and SQL server on the same computer. The resources used by both applications slow down services to the point that business processes suffer, and employees are unable to work efficiently.
With cloud hosting, services are used as needed, so the performance overhead is more efficient. Additionally, with services only used when the web application needs to use them, cloud servers are more energy efficient. Cloud hosting wastes less energy than a virtual private server, which expends energy whether the energy is used or not.
Reliability in the Cloud
Because the business runs on a datacenter, the reliability for the business is increased. With a VPS, if one component of the server crashes, all the web applications running on that server go down.
This can have a major impact on revenue, especially if the server fails at peak hours. Because cloud hosting scales services across multiple servers, one server failure does not impact performance or uptime. Moreover, there is always someone available to fix issues if they impact the business web applications.
These are just a few of the advantage of cloud hosting. Always shop around before determine which service is right for you. For small companies, a VPS might be sufficient, but to ensure that the business is scalable and to maintain reliability, cloud hosting provides considerable advantages.