Small Business Owners: Why Outsourcing Computer Services Matters

Should You Invest In Colocation Or Virtual Private Server Hosting For Your Business?

When you need robust hosting for your website, you have several options available to you—so many, in fact, it can be difficult to choose. Here are some of the pros and cons of the two most popular options to help you decide which one best fit your needs.


Colocation is sort of like owning a condo. You own and are completely responsible for a server. However, the machine is housed in a secure facility with staff members who keeps it cool, clean, and away from potential thieves.

The primary benefit of this option is you have complete control over your server and can do whatever you want with it, including upgrading the physical hardware at any time and installing any software you want on it. Another benefit is you don't have to worry about making space for the machine at your business, keeping the area cool, or preventing people from stealing the box. These things are handled by the colocation provider as part of the monthly rent you pay.

However, the main benefit can also be a big drawback. You still have to maintain the equipment and keep the software up to date. If the hardware malfunctions, you have to replace it physically, so you would need to live near the facility. Many colocation companies offer managed services where a member of their staff will do these things for you for a fee. Still, though, the cost may be less than employing a full-time IT person.

Virtual Private Server Hosting

Virtual private server hosting (VPS) is a type of premium shared hosting. The difference between it and regular shared hosting is the hosting company only allows a few people to be on the same server (e.g. 3 to 4 accounts vs. 100s on a regular hosting server). Additionally, the server is partitioned with a strong firewall that prevents problems with one account on the machine from bleeding onto the others. For instance, if one person's account was hacked, the partition would prevent the hacker from gain access to the other accounts.

This type of hosting requires minimum monetary investment, at first. As your site grows, however, you will need to purchase more space and bandwidth to keep up with it, which may eventually surpass the cost of buying and managing your own server. Another issue is you may be limited in the type of software you can install on the machine, because anything you put on there must be compatible with the hosting company's existing software.

Lastly, even though the accounts are partitioned, you could still experience site outages if your roommates suddenly experience a surge in traffic or get hit with a DDoS attack.

For more information about either of these options or assistance with choosing the best one for your needs, contact a colocation broker from a company like Data Center & Colocation.