Introductory Guide to Cloud Hosting

Managed cloud web hosting

After spotting the word ‘cloud’, you’ve probably realized that this isn’t necessarily something tangible. Instead, it’s a way of configuring servers. With standard server configurations, your site will be hosted on a server with certain physical limitations. On the other hand, cloud hosting can pull from several different servers and therefore it presents a unique server configuration.

What does this mean? For one thing, a more reliable, affordable, and scalable hosting solution!

Definition

If you searched for a ‘cloud hosting’ definition on Google, you would get hundreds of different answers. However, we think it can be summarized nicely as a network of virtual servers that operate using an underlying network of physical servers. Depending on the needs of your website, you can tap into this network more or less (which is why scaling is so simple!).

This isn’t a new idea, and some cloud storage providers use a similar system (including Google Docs and Dropbox). With cloud hosting, the foundations for storage, access, and resource scaling are essentially the same.

How Does it Work?

If we take everything back to basics, traditional hosting will have a single server on which all the website’s files are stored. As soon as a visitor clicks on the website, this single server provides all the necessary files.

With cloud hosting, the resources of your site aren’t pulled from a single server, but instead from several virtual server environments.

There’s a common misconception that no physical servers exist, but they do; the virtualized servers then run on top of this network. By doing this, your website could grow ten times over the course of a year and the server could still handle your demands.

Benefits of Cloud Hosting

Should you choose cloud hosting for your website? Ultimately, there’s no single answer to this and it very much depends on the needs of your website.

If you’re expecting large growth and you need hosting that will cope with fluctuation and traffic spikes, it’s fair to say that cloud hosting would be beneficial. We’ve listed three benefits below;

  • Scalable – As we’ve already mentioned, multiple different servers will allow you to upgrade memory and disk space at the click of a button. While a single physical server causes hardware limitations and significant downtime for improvements, cloud hosting is almost infinitely scalable.
  • Stability and Security – Firstly, a cloud server setup runs in an isolated environment which is the first contributor to stability and security. Secondly, there’s always a back-up server ready to take on your demands should a physical server be compromised.
  • Performance – Finally, a single physical server does have its benefits, but it also means that all visitors to your platform are pulling resources from that one physical location. Since websites with cloud hosting can be pulled from several locations, it’s often the case that a physical server is chosen close to the location of the visitor. Suddenly, they have a lightning fast experience and your reputation improves.

Making the Right Decision

If you’re currently considering your options, we should also say that cloud hosting offers a flexible pricing structure.

What does this mean?

Essentially, it means that you’ll never pay for server resources that aren’t being used. Instead, you’ll simply pay for what you use (and you’ll also have extra resources in the event of a traffic spike!).

With this, you should now understand the basics of what cloud hosting offers as well as the benefits of choosing this option. For those who expect growth and don’t want the hassle that normally comes with it, this fantastic solution can be ideal!

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