Dedicated Server or a Cloud? What to Choose


Many hosting options are available, and choosing the right one for you can be confusing.

The choice of hosting can impact the rating of your website based on the loading speed. Now, it doesn’t mean there is a one-size-fits-all solution in terms of proper functioning, but the hosting solution that reflects your business objectives and technical requirements would be the ultimate fit for you.

Renting a dedicated or cloud server is a popular option among businesses. However, even though they serve the same purpose, they are different. It’s essential to understand what both options offer and the differences between the two.

And that’s what we’re going to review in this article.

What a dedicated server offers

Dedicated servers are physical servers with individual hardware. When you pay for a dedicated server, you’re renting out the machine for yourself.

When you opt for a dedicated server, you have complete control of its operation and management: you can optimize the machine to sustain the needed traffic because you’re the only one using it. With that, when you choose a dedicated server for hosting, no other user can access it; the physical machine works only to host your data.

Usually, dedicated servers are kept in specialized databases under constant monitoring and on-site support. So, when there’s a technical issue with your dedicated server, a technical team on the database location will help you solve the problem as soon as possible.

Now, let’s look at what a dedicated server can offer you:

  • Complete control. You can configure your server in any way you want and install whatever software you want on the server (including OS) or even request additional hardware to go with it.
  • Enhanced performance. Since you’re the only one using the server, all of its power is directed to your website. Therefore, with dedicated servers, there are rarely any performance issues.
  • The highest level of security. With a dedicated server, you get full autonomy and related security. So, whenever there’s a problem or an attack on your server, you can shut it down to solve the issue or prohibit access. You have the right to do so, as you’re the only one using it.
  • Scalability options. A dedicated server has an existing scalability potential, meaning it can often sustain a big traffic load in default configuration. You can additionally add hardware to the server. In general, businesses that are focused on expansion choose a dedicated server in advance so that it can handle potentially significant traffic amounts.

However, with all of the advantages a dedicated server offers, having it as your hosting option implies a level of responsibility. You will be responsible for sufficient security, performance, and technical maintenance requests. A dedicated server might be for you if you’re ready for such a responsibility and have a big enough budget.

What Cloud Hosting offers

Cloud hosting implies hosting websites through virtual servers that operate through a cloud network. Cloud hosting services are accessed through a cloud platform remotely.

Cloud hosting solutions divide physical servers into virtual servers (often located in different parts of the world), which make up a network, distributing the load across it. With it, if one component of the cloud infrastructure fails, the network doesn’t cease functioning; other network servers always back up your website.

Let’s look at what cloud hosting can offer you:

  • Scalability and flexibility. It is very easy to upgrade with cloud hosting. Instead of purchasing resources in advance, you can scale when the need arises.
  • On-demand resources. With cloud hosting, there’s no need to pay for features you won’t use. You can choose a plan that fits your needs best without overspending, and request additional resources later.
  • Sufficient reliability. Modern data centers that support cloud hosting infrastructure often update the software and hardware and troubleshoot if there’s anything wrong with the service. With cloud hosting, you don’t need technical knowledge to start or configure hosting services.
  • Cost efficiency. With cloud hosting, you don’t need a specialized IT department to manage the services or purchase or rent hardware your service will be hosted on – both reducing your expenses.

Cloud hosting can support multiple websites simultaneously. And since it is shared, traffic spikes originating from other users can affect the performance of your website. There are also different types of cloud hosting, including shared or private.

However, the performance specs largely depend on the plan you purchase.

What to choose: a dedicated server or cloud hosting?

A dedicated server and cloud hosting are excellent options, the choice of which depends solely on your needs and, of course, budget.

If you want to start running your website as soon as possible, cloud hosting might be your option, as cloud hosting plans usually include all the necessary configurations.

If you want to ensure uninterrupted performance and confidence in having room to grow, a dedicated server might be your option.

Another thing to consider when choosing a hosting option is traffic amounts. If you anticipate considerable traffic on your website, a dedicated server would be the one to go with. Cloud hosting still carries a risk of performance issues since it shares the resources of physical machines between users. If you want to see how it’ll go, traffic-wise, cloud hosting might be enough for you.

Ultimately, it all comes down to your budget. Dedicated server hosting is a pricy solution. The lowest price for dedicated server hosting is $100 a month (considering providers offering monthly plans). The price for a dedicated server mostly depends on the machine resources you’ll have access to. The price for some dedicated servers can reach thousands of dollars.

When it comes to cloud hosting, it is significantly cheaper than dedicated server hosting. Some cloud hosting solutions cost under $3 a month. Of course, with such prices, you must be mindful of the features you’re purchasing and whether they’ll be enough for you.

The bottom line is if you have the financial capacity, go with a dedicated server – it’s a robust, reliable, and future-oriented solution. If a dedicated server is beyond your financial capabilities, don’t stress: cloud hosting is a powerful enough option for your website, with excellent offerings out there.

Ultimately, go with what is more available to you. That is your best choice.


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