All About Website Hosting

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So you want to build a website, and you’ve heard about website hosting, but you’re not sure what it’s all about. This tutorial is for you!

Simply put, your website host is the company or person who stores your website, and makes it available to be viewed on the internet. This person usually has a computer that stays connected to the internet, and is set up to allow people to come and browse through the information that you have placed on your website.

There are a number of different options available for hosting your website… some of them better, and some worse. There are some places that will host your website for free, as long as you are willing to display their advertising. There are other places that can charge you up to $100 each month, or more. The difficulty is learning what is right for you.

Factors to Consider:

Space. How much space is your website going to need? If you have a lot of content, or large quantities of graphics, you are going to need to be sure that whomever you host your site with, will provide adequate space for your site, without charging exorbitant fees.

Bandwidth. Bandwidth is the amount of data that you expect people to be downloading from your site on a monthly basis. If your site is mostly text with few graphics, bandwidth probably won’t be a problem. If on the other hand you plan to provide video or audio for download, or large data files and graphics, you will need to be concerned with how much bandwidth your host is able to provide, as well as the cost for additional bandwidth.

Speed. You don’t want people to have to wait 15 minutes to download your pages when your website happens to be busy. Make sure that your hosting provider is connected to a fast internet connection.

Scripting Options. You will want to make sure that your host provides the ability to run scripts on your website. If you intend to build a site with any sort of dynamic functionality (guestbooks, counters, user interaction) you will be needing scripting ability. At the time of writing, major scripting abilities you will want to ask about are PHP, CGI, ASP, FrontPage Extensions, and possibly Ruby.

Cost. The final, and usually the most important factor that you will need to consider is cost. How much do you want to spend on your hosting package. WarkenSoft would suggest that unless you operate a large company and intend to build a large online presence, you should be able to find excellent hosting for under $25 / month. In fact, in most cases you should be able to something under $10 / month.

You will notice on places on our site that WarkenSoft suggests hosting with DreamHost. For most small or medium sized businesses, the services and quality that they offer are excellent. In reference to the factors mentioned above, DreamHost offers the following:

Space: 167 Gigabytes (plenty for almost any website)
Bandwidth: 1.6 Terabytes / month (that’s a lot!)
Speed: Excellent
Cost: $7.95 / month (very competitive)
Click here to visit their site.

We have been very happy with our experience with them so far. We recommend that you give them a try. You’ll find it worth while.

Related Reading:

The Joy of PHP: A Beginner's Guide to Programming Interactive Web Applications with PHP and mySQLThe Joy of PHP: A Beginner's Guide to Programming Interactive Web Applications with PHP and mySQLThird Edition now with bonus chapters. Have you ever wanted to design your own website or browser application but thought it would be too difficult or... Read More >
Head First PHP & MySQL: A Brain-Friendly GuideHead First PHP & MySQL: A Brain-Friendly Guide

If you're ready to create web pages more complex than those you can build with HTML and CSS, Head First PHP & MySQL is the ultimate learning guide ... Read More >

Modern PHP: New Features and Good PracticesModern PHP: New Features and Good Practices

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