What Is Web Hosting? Beginner’s Guide

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_toggle title=”Web Hosting”]Most of the time when working in web development there will be two types of operating systems. Linux Server vs Windows Server, which one is really the best server operating system?
This could be a big decision depending on your business success. You might be wondering which one is better? As there isn’t a clear-cut answer to this, we can take a look a the advantages and disadvantages of both of them.

There are a few common features that you will find in both operating systems.
The first one is how to manage your website files. Linux and Windows both support FTP and SFTP. This is the ability to use the File Transfer Protocol and connect to computers together.
For development, you will find all your basic coding languages. HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, your most common frontend languages are fully supported.
For server processing, you can easily use PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby. Database languages that can be used are MySQL and SQLite.
Using Linux or Windows doesn’t restrict any or the industry-standard coding languages.

Linux web hosting is probably the most used server operating system in the market. This is because of the cost. Linux is a free open-source operating system. This makes server software upgrades and management easy with no extra overhead.
Web developers will set up a LAMP system environment. This gives them Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP software on their server. This is used because they all work seamlessly together.

Linux

Allows for running scripts written in PHP, Perl, Python, and other Unix-originated languages. It usually supports MySQL and PostgreSQL databases.

Windows

Allows for running ASP scripts and utilizing .NET and other Microsoft technologies. It supports Microsoft SQL Server and Access database.[/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title=”Domain Name Server (DNS)”]

Domain Name Server (DNS)

Today I’m going to talk about Domain Name Servers. The short form of Domain Name Server is DNS. Every device which is connected to the internet will be give an IP address. IP stands for internet protocol. The IP addresses have two version. Such as IPv4 and IPv6. The IPv4 addresses are represented using 4 octets. The example of an IP address is “192.168.21.2”

The IP addresses change all the time. When a particular get connected to the internet it gets an IP address and again if the same device get connected to the internet it will be given a different IP address. Because of this reason, that’s why I said IP addresses change all the time. Before going into Domain Name Servers we need find out what is a domain.

The devices, websites all have IP addresses. These IP addresses are unique. Actually these are used to identify the particular device, particular website in the internet. Actually these IP addresses are difficult to keep in mind. So as a solution for this domains are introduced. Actually domain name can be identified as a more human readable format which represents an IP address. Sometimes you may not understand what I said. Don’t worry, I will explain it to you? Just keep reading.

I said that domain name can be considered as a human readable format of an IP address. Now you may be wondering what is the meaning of this. Okay I’ll explain it to you. Domain name is simply a name given for a particular IP address. Since these are names, they are easy keep in mind. As an example;

Let’s say a particular website has an IP address “192.168.30.2” and the domain name of this website is “bitsy”
You can simply type www.bitsy.com to visit this website rather than typing and remembering the IP address. No matter how much of a genius you are, it is impossible to remember the IP addresses.

Now I’ll move on to Domain Name Servers or simply DNS. As you guys think what is a DNS?, What is the purpose of it?, how is it used? And why is it used. Don’t get confused I will explain it to you.
Domain Name Server can be considered like a phonebook. In here what I meant by phonebook is the phonebook which is available in your home, workplaces, etc. So just think, what is in the phonebook?. That’s right, phone numbers are available in the phone book. When you want to give a call for a particular person, you simply look in the phone book to find the phone number of that person and simply dial it. Domain Name Server is also something quite similar to a phone book. Domain Name Server simply matches the domain name with the associate IP address. I’m pretty sure you didn’t understand it. Okay don’t get confused or scared, I will explain it to you. Just keep reading.

If you had read this post from the beginning, I hope you saw the fact that I said Domain Name is simply a human readable format of an IP address. Let’s say you simple type the domain name to get a service from the server. Though domain names are understood by you the computers can’t understand domain names. Then what do the computers understand?. They can only understand IP addresses. Now what?. You type a web address in domain name format and computers can only understand numbers or in other words ‘IP addresses’. This is where the problem arose. If there is a problem, there should be an answer or a solution for that, There can’t be problems without an answer. This problem also have a solution. The solution is the Domain Name Server. Domain Name servers simply translates the domain name into an associate IP address

I hope you all got a basic idea about what is Domain Name Server. Now I’m going to reveal more details about Domain Name Servers. Oh sorry, I forgot to mention, Domain Name Servers are also sometimes called as Domain Name Systems. Both these two have similar meanings. Before, I said that Domain Name Server is something equivalent to kind of phone book. Now I’m going to say that Domain Name Server is kind of a translator. Don’t get confused. I will explain why it is considered as a translator. Just keep reading guys.

Let’s take an example. As an example think there are two persons, a girl and a boy namely Jane and Darn respectively. Jane is an American and Darn is a French. Jane understands and speaks only English while Darn understands and speaks only French. Now they want to communicate with each other. But how can they communicate?. Your guess is right. They should use a translator. Now I will again move into DNS. Computers understand only numbers while humans remember domain names. So to make a communication between these two, Domain Name Server acts as the translator between them. The Domain Name Server will translate the Domain Name into IP address.

Now you may be wondering how this is done. In Domain Name Server, there is a table. This table contains Domain Names and its associate IP address. When the Domain Name comes as an input for the Domain Name Server it will give the associate IP address as an output. After the IP address is given for the web browser, then the web browser will pass the IP address for the web server and requests the required service.

Domain Name Servers have 4 types. They are;

  • DNS recursive solver/DNS resolver
  • ROOT name Server
  • Top Level Domain/TLD server
  • Authoritative name server

When you type a URL, the web browser will the domain name to the resolver. If this domain name had been accessed before, the IP address for this domain name was store in its own cache memory. Ah I forgot to mention. Resolver is simply your ISP. But if you accessing this Domain Name for the first time, it will send the domain name to the root server. Then the rot server will pass this to Top Level Domain and Top Level Domain Server will direct this Authoritative name server. Then authoritative name server will respond the IP address of the website you requested. Then this IP address will be stored in resolver’s cache memory, in case if you request this website again, the resolver do not need to again go this whole process to find the IP address.[/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title=”Shared or Dedicated?”]The first step in web hosting is for you to decide whether it should be Shared or Dedicated. First you need to understand the hosting requirements as it varies in terms of cost and performance.

Shared Hosting

In Shared hosting, many websites are operated in one server. The main advantage for you here is that the host will be able to reduce the cost and therefore the service will become affordable. On the down side, bandwidth and storage will be limited. Similarly the performance of your website will be affected by the requirements of other websites who are sharing the same server resources. Shared hosting is best if your website requires less storage, bandwidth and CPU consumption.

Dedicated Hosting

In this environment only one website is hosted by a single server. As a result you will be able to use server resource without limits. Dedicated hosting is ideal if you are planing to run a popular website with lot of disk space or if you run scripts with above average CPU consumption.[/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title=”Features Of A Hosting Plan”]There number of features in Hosting Plan.

  1. Disk Space
  2. Email Accounts
  3. FTP Access

When we consider about Disk Space, All hosting accounts are providing some spaces to store our files. Those plans give some options like, how much space that we want to store our Emails, DataBase, Web files.

Second Feature is the Email Accounts. In there described about three types of Email Accounts.

And this feature is very common if that we use web hosting domain.let’s pay our attention for that three types of Email Accounts.

  • POP3

We can identify this as very usual one or traditional inbox. There are space to save our emails and that is good opportunity for all users. And we can download our mails also. Special case is login and password will same to one account.

  • Forwarding mails

This also very useful because without saving mail we can redirect those to another person.

  • Alias Account

This can identify same as above Forwarding mails. we can collect the emails those are sent to unknown mail servers.

Third feature is the FTP Access. As our first step we will create Web page and we will transfer our all necessary files to Web Browser. For that process, that means we are transferring our files by using FTP Access.[/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title=”What is ASP Web Hosting?”]In a nutshell, ASP web hosting can be regarded as the web hosting companies that provide support for Active Server Page (ASP).

Now let’s dive more into ASP web hosting.

What is ASP?

So, First, let’s discuss what ASP is. ASP or Active Server Page is an HTML page with embedded ASP scripts. Before rendering the web page in the visitor’s web browser, the ASP scripts are processed in the server. Apart from that, creating a dynamic database-driven web page is possible with ASP. Therefore, a visitor can access database data while interacting with web page objects such as Active X and  Java components.

Hope now you have an idea about ASP. Now let’s proceed to grasp how ASP works.

How does ASP work?

let’s take a scenario. Suppose, you typed an URL in the address bar of your web browser and hit enter. That means you requested a file from the webserver to send it to your computer. In this situation, If the requested file is in standard HTML format, then the file which your web browser receives will look like exactly the same as it looked like on the webserver. But, if the file is an ASP script embedded HTML file instead of a standard HTML file, things will be different. When an ASP file sent to your computer, it first runs the HTML code. Then the ASP script which could contain the current time, date and any other information related to previously mentioned.

How to find an ASP web host?

In order to provide you with little more information when it comes to finding an ASP web host, I would like to share the followings with you.

  • It is safer to host your ASP pages on a Windows server.

It is because Windows servers are more stable and most of the ASP components work specific to Windows.

  • Make sure your web host provides support for the type of database which your website requires.

 

[/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title=”Can I host my website on my personal computer?”]Of course, you can. But you have to aware of certain facts before doing so.

  1. First, you have to know how to set up a WWW server software on your PC. The function of the particular software is to facilitate internet users to access the web files on your PC.
  2. Then you have to find out your bandwidth quota. So that your internet service provider will let you run websites on your home computer.
  3. You have to keep your PC ON always. your website will not be available if you turn it off or restart.
  4. If your home internet connection is not capable of serving web pages, your website will load slowly. So, be aware of that also.

[/vc_toggle][vc_toggle title=”Which Web Server – Linux or Windows?”]

Both these web servers have same functionality. But they use different technologies. They are vary according to the factors such as stability, versatility, and cost. Both of them have strengths and weaknesses. It  determines their popularity. When selecting a web server you should consider the technical support and the database support that you need. You can choose the most convenient one for you.

Cost

Windows is more expensive than Linux. Linux is an open source (free) webserver but Windows is a proprietary (non free) webserver. Windows with good features is a bit expensive. You need to pay close attention to the features you need and check whether the necessary features are present. If using scripting support is unnecessary, using Linux would be much profitable.

 

Stability and Security

When it comes to stability and security factors, Linux is superior to Windows. When comparing Windows with Linux, you can see a huge difference in these factors. Linux is not stuck like Windows while working with multiple applications. Windows tends to get unstable when working with several scheduled tasks. Linux does not always need to be rebooted. It has a Unix-based operating system. It provides a huge support and strength to Linux servers. Linux has proved that it is safer than Windows web servers. Windows easily becomes a target for hackers due to it’s instability. From that perspective,  choosing Linux is more  advantageous than Windows.

 

Linux supports for programming languages such as PHP, Python, Perl etc. It also supports for database software applications like MYSQL and PostgreSQL. Windows has mainly built up to support Microsoft technology based applications such as Microsoft SQL server, Microsoft Access etc. It also allow to run and utilize ASP scripts. If you’re going to run an Exchange server or a SharePoint site, Window is the preferred server. It is best to choose Linux as your webserver when installing content management systems like Word Press and Joomla.

User-friendliness

Although stability and security are more important factors, it should be easy to use. Therefore user-friendliness also considered as an important factor when choosing a web server. When it comes to user-friendliness, Windows is much better than Linux. Windows web servers run an operating system that provides a Graphical User Interface (GUI).

The user has to work in a WIMP (Windows, Icons, Mouse, and Pointers) environment in the GUI. So Windows is easy and simple for the user to use. Linux has a more complex user-Interface called command line interface. It uses type written commands instead of graphical objects in order to enter commands.While the GUI is easy to use, the command line is faster to enter commands. You will get some idea to choose the bet web server for you through this post.[/vc_toggle][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][/vc_column][/vc_row]