Starter Server Series Part 3: Virtual Private Servers

Some people are stuck in the unfortunate gap between shared hosting and dedicated servers. They need the functionality and flexibility of a dedicated server, but they don’t need its storage or computing power. Paying almost 200$ a month for total flexibility is a bitter pill to swallow; fortunately, there have been other people with this same problem and server providers have come up with a solution. Virtual Private Servers (VPS for short- also known as Virtual Dedicated Servers) are different partitions of a single machine that run independently of each other. Each partition functions as its own independent server, meaning that everyone on the server shares computing power but gets complete control as well!

What’s next? You guessed it- Price check! VPSes tend to fall in-between dedicated servers and shared hosting in price. Take a look at LiquidWeb’s price breakdown:

Cheapest shared hosting solution – 14.95$/month

Cheapest VPS – 60$/month

Cheapest dedicated server – 189$/month

It’s pretty easy to see that the VPS price fills that flexibility niche: You get the flexibility of a dedicated server and the resources of shared hosting for somewhere in-between. Not bad!

So who is this for? Well- this one’s a little tougher. This option is really ideal for businesses or individuals who need customized applications that simply can’t be run on shared hosting. VPSes offer that flexibility for a price that’s pretty hard to ignore, so if you’ve been searching for a customizable platform that can run a lightweight custom app you might want to look into a VPS. Be wary, though- different companies have different rules as to what you can run in their VPSes. Make sure you’ve done your homework!

There’s also another, less obvious use for VPSes (one more nostalgic and fun, in my opinion)… older games! Many older games have dedicated servers that don’t require tons of RAM, space, or processing power. I run an Enemy Territory dedicated server myself, and I’ve noticed it only uses around 180MB of RAM and 12% CPU usage on average even with 20-25 players on. That’s about ideal for what resources you’ll get from a VPS (LiquidWeb’s most basic solution above offers 384MB of RAM, plenty for an older game like ET). Newer games, obviously, require more than a VPS can offer; if you’ve got a hankering for a game in its teens, however, you may want to look into renting a VPS for cheap if it’s worth it you. Is a blast from the past with a few of your college buddies worth 60$ a month? If I didn’t already have access to servers I could use- it sure would be for me!











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