When you are in the market for a dedicated server, it is important to make sure you get the most for your money. Whether you are buying the server or leasing it, you do not want to end up with a machine and service that is less than what you expected. Since needs vary, I can not tell you exactly what you should want in a server, but I can give you a few pointers that should help make the decision easier.
1. Choose server-quality hardware – Unfortunately, there are some server providers that will offer servers that are not actually server-grade systems. If you see things like Celeron processors in the specs, that should raise a red flag.
2. Check the terms of service agreement – Make sure the type of site or sites you plan to host will actually be allowed on the server. For example, if you have a network of adult sites but the provider does not allow them, you are in for a world of hurt.
3. Understand the service type – Managed servers and unmanaged servers are very different. Furthermore, the two terms do not always mean the same thing to every provider. Read the feature list and find out exactly what you are getting.
4. Ask around – If you are about to put your server in a data center that has a history of being hacked or broken into, you probably want to know that before you sign up. Read reviews and talk to other customers on forums.
5. Find out what is not included – Services like automated backups are usually not included in standard packages. You should also know how much additional RAM, hard drives, and other upgrades will cost.