When it comes to creating a website, there are a lot of technical terms that can be confusing to beginners. The phrases “web hosting” and “web server” are often employed interchangeably, yet they possess unique definitions.
It’s vital to recognize that the selection of web hosting and the web server can significantly impact the success of your online presence. Therefore, it’s crucial that you know it all.
Before we dive into the differences between web hosting and web servers, it’s important to understand what they are and how they work. So let’s begin with it.
What is a Web Server?
When users request web pages, a computer program called a web server serves those pages to them. It’s responsible for storing all the files and data related to a website and processing client requests, which are typically HTTP requests from web browsers.
Web servers can handle not only static web pages but also dynamic content generated by server-side scripts like PHP and ASP.NET. These scripts run on the server and generate content that’s then sent back to the user’s browser.
What is Web Hosting?
Web hosting is a service that enables individuals and organizations to make their websites accessible to the general public over the Internet. It is a form of internet hosting service that provides the essential technology and tools required to publish a website on the World Wide Web.
Web hosting companies offer clients space on their own or leased servers, along with internet connectivity, typically located in a data center. This service permits clients to store their website’s files on a remote server that is continuously available, creating a reliable and secure environment for their website.
Furthermore, web hosting companies provide the option for other servers to store their hardware in their data centers, referred to as colocation, along with access to internet connectivity.
What’s the difference between web hosting and web server?
In the realm of the Internet, web hosting and web server are two distinct terms. The main contrast between the two is that web hosting is a service that permits people and businesses to present their websites to the public on the Internet, while a web server is a software program that saves and distributes web pages to users when they request them.
Well, there are some other aspects in which you can differentiate between the two. For example:
- A web server is responsible for storing and serving web pages and other resources, such as images and videos, to users who access your website.
- Web hosting companies offer additional services like domain registration, email hosting, and website builder tools.
- With web hosting, the hosting provider takes care of maintaining the hardware and software infrastructure and ensures that it is secure.
- When you own a web server, you are responsible for maintaining it, applying software updates, and ensuring that it is secure.
- With a web server, you have complete control over the hardware and software infrastructure, which means you can easily scale up or down as your website traffic demands.
- Web hosting plans are typically designed for a specific amount of traffic and may not be as flexible in terms of scalability.
- Running and handling a web server can be a costly endeavor, as it involves investing in hardware and software, along with bearing ongoing maintenance expenses.
- Web hosting is typically more affordable, as the hosting provider shares the infrastructure costs across multiple customers.
Web hosting and web servers are two distinct methods of making your website accessible on the Internet. Web hosting is generally more affordable and easier to use but offers less control over your website’s environment. Web servers, on the other hand, are more expensive and require more technical expertise but offer complete control over your website’s environment. When choosing between the two options, it is essential to take into account your requirements, financial resources, and technical knowledge.