What is a server?

A server is simply a program running on a computer that computes the request of other programs. These requests generally come from a client and that client can use the same computer or connect to the server via the internet from a remote location.

What kinds of servers are there?

There are numerous servers available and each one is defined based on its uses. Servers range from game servers and file servers to proxy servers and web servers with numerous others in between.  Since almost every action on the internet requires the user to interact with some sort of server, you can imagine how important and diverse servers are.

Which server should I need for my website?

When it comes to websites, you will always need some sort of hosting. This ensures that your site is always up and can handle the traffic/queries/ and requests from the visitors. Web servers are used for this service and can be hosted on server computers from anywhere in the world.

You can find free servers and free hosting for your site, but it is recommended that you use a paid server if you plan on having a successful site or if your site has a lot of data or traffic.

Different characteristics of Web servers:

  • Bandwidth – is a bit rate measure of available or consumed data communication resources expressed in bits/second or multiples of it (kilobits/s, megabits/s etc.). This is a measure of data transfer and it is expressed in bits per second (bps). Good bandwidth for a server would be unlimited.
  • Hosting space – this is the amount of room you are allotted for the files stored on the server. You can easily find servers with unlimited hosting space.
  • Email accounts – For servers this is where you can make as many email accounts as you’d like on your server and read them from the Control Panel.
  • Domains – Quite a few servers offer unlimited domains for their users.
  • MySQL databases – MySQL is a relational database management system that helps you manage all of your data for the server (like registered users).
  • CPanel – This is a user interface for the admins and owners of the server so that all of the features of the server can be managed.
  • Uptime – Servers sometimes crash, go offline, or experience other technical issues. This can be a problem when visitors come to visit your site and they are not able to access it. Making sure you have a reliable server is essential.
  • Customer Support – Having a server that comes with 24/7 customer support is very handy as you will sometimes encounter issues and a quick resolution is necessary.
  • Support of a variety of scripting languages (ie php and perl) – This is excellent for programmers and scripters who prefer to use a different scripting language.

Where to get a web server

So you decided you want a server but need to know where to find one, well below is a list of the top sites that offer these services. Also included is the price they charge and some of their features.

1)      http://www.hostmonster.com/

Features – Unlimited Space & Bandwidth, Host Unlimited Domains, Unlimited E-mail Accounts, Free Domain, cPanel, Google Adwords credit, Free Site Builders, WordPress, No outsourcing.

Price – $8 per month, specials at $6

2)      http://www.ipage.com/ipage/index.html

Features – Unlimited Disk Space/Bandwidth and Email, Free Domain, Free Security Suite, Free Site-Building Tools, Free Online Store, Free Yahoo & Facebook Credits, Powered by green energy

Price – Regularly $8 per month, specials low as $3

3)      http://www.justhost.com/

Features – Unlimited GB’s of Space, Unlimited GB’s of Transfer, Unlimited Domain Hosting, Unlimited E-Mail Accounts, Unlimited MySQL Databases, FREE Site Builder, FREE Domain Name, FREE Instant Setup, Anytime Money Back Guarantee

Price – $7 per month, specials at $4

4)      http://www.hostgator.com/

Features – Unlimited disk space and bandwidth, Free site builder, Control panel, Free website templates, 99% uptime guarentee, 24/7 support, Google Adwords credit

Price – $4 per month