A Guide to WordPress Hosting

CHAPTER 1: Hosting Your Own WordPress Website

In this world of technology, we rarely find a book worm. Want some information but too shy to ask someone? Don’t worry all you have to do is open up any device with internet access and Boom! You’ll get all the information you need in no time. But do you know how all this happened? Yes, you know that you can get any information from a website, but what is a website and how this website is available for you? Let’s start with a flow.

What is a website?

It is a set of web pages under a single domain name. To understand this, let’s understand its 3 categories:

  • Static HTML: A type of website that possesses a set of documents and pages in a collected form.
    Web applications: It includes your Google, games, other email providers etc.
  • Content management system: It uses the skill of the web applications to collect the documents. The web page that you open to read is not a single file, but the application is continuously taking the content out of the database and sending it to your browser as it is a single document.

Running your own website

In order to run a website on a browser, all you need is an internet connection, that is capable enough to receive the request, able to take a suitable action and then respond to the request.

You may run a website from your home on your home computer, but to be very honest it would be a disastrous idea. Let’s see how. To run a website, your computer must be turned on all the time and connected to an internet connection all the time. But the problem is your home computer only allows you to deal with only one client at one time. If a lot of people start to access your website, your connection will be lost and your website will stop working immediately. But the web hosting companies can solve this problem for you.

Considering the web hosting company is the best way to run your own website. In this process, you buy some of their computers on rent, and then you can put the files and software required to run the website. For your ease, they provide you with tools for managing your computer, building and running the website.

CHAPTER 2: Types of WordPress Hosting

There are five types of hosting:

1. Shared hosting:
Shared hosting is the most common form of hosting. It is less expensive but less powerful. As you may guess from its name, it is “shared” hosting, all the websites under this are stored on a single drive, a lot of people with different accounts share one server. You can use shared hosting if your website is not very popular, crowded or don’t have large and heavy contents. The problem with the shared hosting is that they are vulnerable to attacks no matter how secure it is.

2. Dedicated server hosting:
The dedicated server hosting is the type of hosting that gives you complete control over an entire server but it is a bit expensive and complicated as well. Because on shared hosting you may share the server with other hundreds of users but on dedicated server hosting you are the only person which increases the speed of your website. However, you are responsible for all of your work like updates and debugging issues and problems. With such hosting service, you can install software, build custom software or change the operating system etc.

3. Virtual private server:
When you blend the advantages and disadvantages of shared hosting and the dedicated server hosting, the virtual private server pops up. In VPS, you have your own dedicated server but the server is not physical, it is a virtual machine. With VPS, you have complete control over the system but you are also sharing the servers. However, as compared to a shared server, you will get much bandwidth and overall computing power. There are also fewer security issues and you’ll get your own IP address.

4. Scalable cloud-based VPS hosting:
The VPS and the dedicated hosting also have their limits on storage bandwidth etc. When a website goes viral unexpectedly and the traffic rushes to it in large numbers per day. The website crashes sometimes. To solve this problem there are Scalable cloud-based hosting servers in which hundreds of customers share a giant system. This is best for business owners who don’t have less traffic at the start and then the traffic increases after time. In this type of web hosting service, you only pay for what you use.

5. Managed hosting:
This system is best for you if you have no technical skills. This system provides you the overall control and technical support. With managed hosting service, you’ll have direct access to VPS or a dedicated
server. You will have complete control without caring about the server administration.

CHAPTER 3: What Are You Paying For?

To understand the various pricing schemes provided by web hosts. Let’s know what you are actually buying from them.

1. Servers
All the physical equipment that web hosting companies use including all the powerful computers.

2. Data centers
That big building where the company keeps all the big computers. They also pay a high amount of electricity bills, keep the building cool and guarded.

3. Software
Most of the software that companies use are paid software.

4. Internet connection
Web hosting companies have to purchase their internet connection and in order to manage their system, they need a very powerful internet connection with an almost unlimited bandwidth limit.

5. Support
Whenever you need some information, you can call or email the hosting companies and you can get your answer. They hire a large number of workers for your support.

6. Business head
Like all other business companies, web hosting companies also have some extra expenses like taxes, bills etc. Companies that are better managed provide better and less expensive services to their customers.

Recommendation: Don’t look for price list
Do not just choose any data plan that is less expensive. Look for the plans, compare them and choose the one that better suits your requirements.

Before choosing any data plan, look for the list given below to compare for the best web host as per your requirement.

  1. Speed
  2. Bandwidth limit
  3. Storage
  4. Scalability for your website
  5. Technology you need
  6. Access to your account
  7. Customer Support

CHAPTER 4: How Does the WordPress Hosting Servers Work?

A web hosting server is like a computer that holds your database and website’s contents. There are two absolute requirements of the software that runs your website.

Operating system: It always requires an operating system (just like you have windows as an operating system for your computer). The most common system used by web hosts is Linux.

Web server: The term “web server” is also used for the software that is responsible for the processing of requests from the internet. When you enter a URL in the address bar of your browser, the web server reads the request and responds by providing you with the website you are trying to reach. The most common web server you’ll find in most hosting plans is Apache.

Apart from serving static files, if you are doing something else, you will also need:

Database management system: Many websites require a database management system to store web contents. MySQL is most commonly used because it is very powerful and free of cost. There are also other database systems available if you want to try something unique and new.

Programming Language: There’s always a need for a software that receives contents from the database and sends it to the web server. Whether you write a blog, game or any other application, there will always be the need for a programming language. You don’t necessarily need to know the language. It is the job of web servers. The most commonly used language for this purpose is PHP. You may choose any other language but make sure that you choose the server that supports it.

CHAPTER 5: Web Hosting With WordPress

WordPress is highly recommended for beginners. It is easy to use, highly professional, powerful and is great for learning.

Which hosting plan to choose for WordPress?

Shared hosting
If you are running a personal blog or a small website, shared hosting is the best option for you. WordPress itself recommends Bluehost that is a shared hosting provider. But it is not good for the website that has large traffic.

Salable VPS hosting
If you have a website with growing traffic scalable VPS WordPress hosting is the one that you should choose over a shared hosting provider. But you may also face the bandwidth and speed issues. For this, you’ll have to choose the right VPS plan for you.

Managed hosting
If you are a business owner with a huge traffic on your website, managed WordPress hosting is a better option for you. They provide you a lot of control on your website without caring for updates, security issues, monitoring etc. They will do everything for you and you can save a lot of your time.

Chapter 6: Cloud Hosting Email and Mail Servers

Cloud is the term used for the cluster of computers. The web hosting companies use cloud-based hosting plans. In cloud-based hosting plans companies may or may not have all the computer systems but, they can connect to other companies. The benefit of cloud hosting is that it never exceeds the limit. If there is the very large amount of data, more computers can be added to it.

Some website owners use their email address like Gmail, Outlook but that seems very unprofessional for business owners and professionals. To solve this problem there are email hosting service providers who give you your personalized email address like your_name@yourcompany.com. You will just have to buy their services just like web hosting service.

Email hosting requires 2 things –

  1. Email server
    The software that runs on the computer and receives or sends the email.
  2. Email client
    The application that is used to view the email.

The server and clients use email protocol to communicate. Email protocol includes:

  1. Post office protocol (POP): It sends message but doesn’t keep the record
  2. Internet message access protocol (IMAP): Syncs the email, keeps all the records.

Chapter 7: Mistakes People Make While Buying WordPress Hosting

Many customers are fooled by some web hosting companies. Let’s discuss the common mistake most people make when buying a web host.

  1. Most customers pay attention to the TV ads instead of actual search on the company website before buying and pay a lot of money for the service that can be bought in less amount from any other good company.
  2. Randomly picking the companies that provide a lot of free software. Do some research, pick the company that offers the right software as per your need, not all the software are helpful for you.
  3. Buying the cheapest one. Get the one that fulfills your requirement. Saving a few dollars won’t help if you won’t get what you need.
  4. Choosing the host that provides less customer support over the one with 24/7 customers support to save a few bucks.
  5. Clicking continues without reading the terms of conditions. It’s not good in the case of web hosting because a lot of companies disallow some important controls that you unconsciously accept.
  6. Starting long term contracts with a new company.
  7. Caring much about the ads that say “free domain”. A domain is not expensive and companies that offer this service often disallow the basic controls.
  8. Paying for the features that you don’t need during the buying process like domain name privacy, dedicated IP and backup services etc.
  9. Fooled by the word Unlimited like unlimited bandwidth. They might allow you the unlimited bandwidth but on the other hand, may give you less storage space.
  10. Buying the wrong hosting plan that doesn’t suit your requirements.

Resources For WordPress