Part 2: Hosting
Hosting referrers to the computer that stores your website and displays it to the Internet. Web Servers are generally more powerful than a home PC and are located in Data Centres with backup power systems and a larger connection to the Internet.
It is theoretically possible to host your site from your home computer but you would need to deal with a number of technical issues and your site would be slower and have greater down-time.
Why is it better to host my website in Australia?
While hosting in Australia is more expensive than in the USA, the costs are only marginally more but the advantages of hosting locally are:
- Better Latency
The time for information to travel from the hosting computer to your viewers computer is less.
- Better for Search Results
Major search engines take both the search terms and location into account when displaying results. A local host can influence your sites position
- No 'middle of the day, scheduled servicing'
Web hosting companies sometimes need to perform maintenance on the hosting equipment and will do so overnight to reduce the impact on customers. Of course, the time difference means that maintenance is done during the day here.
What is Storage and bandwidth and...?
In a shared hosting environment such as the one we use at Presshost we use a number of terms
means the disk space that you're using to store the website but also includes the space needed to store email messages and statistical logs. Presshost offer 1GB of storage on their starter SOHO plan
is the amount of traffic that travels from your host computer. A small site that doesn't have many images will not have much traffic but a larger site that has a lot of images or maybe offers downloads will use more. 10GB of bandwidth is offered on the Presshost SOHO plan
databases are used to create dynamic sites or sites that require interaction, such as e-commerce sites and Content Management sites. In most cases you'll only need a single database
or File Transfer Protocol is a method of transferring files between computers. A master account can access all files on your hosting account but you can also create accounts that are limited to specific directories if you're needing to share files.
If you're wanting to break up the site into functions then a sub-domain is a great way of doing so. A sub-domain is a domain name under your main domain e.g.. subdomain.mydomain.extension
Our WordPress example site (wordpress.seja-design.com.au)is a sub-domain.
What about hosts that offer unlimited space or bandwidth?
While there are a number of companies that offer "unlimited" storage or bandwidth these offers are often a misnomer, protected by fair use policies.
Companies that provide these types of hosting services do so by having a large customer base and overselling their resources. They are counting on the large number of small clients to cover the occasional excessive user. Users that do utilise a large amount of resources often find that the service is not able to cope with the demands, sites are slow to load and sometimes time out.
Unlimited hosting services will limit other resources such as CPU and memory meaning that some commonly used applications, such as WordPress can grind to a halt, especially if you're running too many plugins.
Large shared hosting environments run larger risks of hacking and denial of service attacks
Some less scrupulous hosting companies even go as far as to deliberately give poor customer support to the clients that they consider to be resource abusers, passively encouraging them to move to a different host, allowing them to concentrate on selling their unlimited service to people who don't need it.