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What’s Best to Host Your Website? Cloud Computing Choices Explained

If you do businesses on the internet at all, you’re aware of the benefits of cloud-based computing, especially as it relates to cost and resource conservation. As the tech evolves, it becomes more affordable and varied.

That’s fortunate. Your ideal cloud solution may not be the right one for me. 

However, that leaves us with some decisions to make. Do we place all of our faith in a public cloud, keep all of our data close to home, or use some combination with a hybrid model? There are many variations in between these three, so check with your potential hosting services to learn more about the advantages of their cloud solutions.

In the meantime, let’s take a closer look at the options and advantages for different computing requirements and business models.

Public Cloud: Agent of Change

If you need a cost-effective platform that can scale up or down according to your peak traffic requirements and business plateaus, a public cloud may be suitable. You won’t need to purchase and maintain any equipment, and all updates and security are handled by the provider.

Although the infrastructure is shared with other clients, this option allows creation of virtualized machines with dedicated resources. It also provides access to apps and storage remotely, so that’s less concern and expense for you. Examples of public cloud service providers are Amazon Web Services, MS Azure, and Google Cloud, as well as cloud hosting providers and email clients.

This is a good choice for sole practitioners, startups, small websites with static content,and companies with smaller budgets and no IT professionals.

Private Cloud: Ultimate Control

Larger enterprises or those that have the budget for dedicated IT departments and room for infrastructure might prefer a private cloud server. This option allows you greater control over resources, access, and customizations. You’ll also enjoy greater security and privacy.

This isn’t necessarily an option if you’re looking for cost-efficiency, and you’ll need some level of technical knowledge at your disposal to configure and monitor your server. But, if you have a lot of sensitive data that needs protection, a private server will give you and your customers and vendors peace of mind. It’s also ideal for government agencies and organizations with special tech or data management requirements.

Hybrid Cloud: The Best of Both Worlds?

If you’re looking for a platform that allows to to retain control of some data while providing you with the benefits of public cloud for scalability and flexibility, a hybrid solution may be the answer for you. 

Hybrid cloud hosting plans are very flexible. With a managed, private server, your organization will be able to run differentiating process close to home while relegating non-essentials to the private cloud. This will allow you to accelerate certain projects and processes while enjoying the cost savings, expanded storage, and scalability a public cloud computing environment supports.

Best of all, you can customize your hybrid model to support on-premises-to-cloud and cloud-to-cloud in any configuration you need without jeopardizing data integrity and integration. This will promote the responsiveness and agility most companies need to remain competitive and viable in the 21st century.

With the rise in demand of cloud based solutions many consumer centric hosting companies have stepped up to the plate and offered hybrid solutions. Hostpapa is one of the first companies to offer  a hybrid cloud/shared hosting solution.

Giants like Bluehost have also moved into the space announcing multiple plans that address both consumer and business requirements.

Pros and Cons of Discount Cloud Solutions

While free service can be iffy, you don’t have to make a huge investment to have reliable cloud computing service. You just have to choose wisely and ask the right questions before making a commitment. Most cloud hosting begins with a low base price and allows you to add resources as you need them on a pay-as-you-go basis. That’s the beauty of PaaS.

 The cost savings and scalability are two of the best features of discounted hosting. The fact cloud computing is also a green technology choice means it’s a platform you can feel good about at any price. Add to that the ability to have a borderless platform that’s available any time, from any location, and you’ve got it made.

Now, for the downside.

The twin threats of availability and security are still a concern, especially with a public-only model. The distributed nature of cloud servers means a wider attack surface and more endpoints to protect. If you choose a cloud platform, you’ll be more independent than ever on your ISP to maintain reliability. Another issue is that some discounted hosting services can disappear without notice, leaving you without access to your own website and any data that’s stored on their servers.

Before choosing a public cloud host, make sure to find out about the availability of backups and restoration features, and whether you’ll have access to these. Will they retain proprietary control, or will you be able to download your data? What about third-party access? Free and discount services have to make a profit somehow. Make sure it sin;t off of your information.

Final Thoughts

Migrating to the cloud is no small decision. Take heart. No matter the nature and size of your business, there’s a cloud platform that’s right for you. Cost shouldn’t be a factor since there are many budget-friendly options on the market. The most important considerations when choosing a cloud configuration are security and availability. So, check the uptime of your hosting service, choose a reputable company, and make sure to read your SLA carefully before making a long-term commitment.

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