Our experts have tested critical aspects of different VPS providers, including hardware, performance, and support. Learn all you need to know to choose the best VPS provider for your heavy-traffic site.
The best part is; you don’t have to rely on several professionals from the VPS niche. At HostAdvice, we perform independent studies, surveys, and tests led by industry experts. However, all of this is backed up by thousands of user reviews from around the globe. Assess the quality of the leading VPS providers firsthand – read the experiences of beginners in the niche or your colleagues.
Want to avoid getting into too many details? Here’s a summary of the best virtual private server providers on the market!
Short on Time? Check Our 10 Top VPS Providers Ranked:
- Kamatera – Best Overall VPS Hosting Provider
- Cloudways – Best VPS On An Enterprise-Grade Platform
- Ultahost – Best VPS for Flexibility
- InterServer– Best VPS For Uptime
- Time4VPS – Best Windows VPS Hosting
- A2Hosting – The Least Painful Upgrade From Shared Hosting
- Hostinger – Best Unmanaged VPS Hosting
- Contabo – Best Cheap Virtual Private Servers
- GoDaddy – Best Linux VPS Hosting
- Bluehost – Best VPS Hosting for Developers
Full Overview on our 10 Best VPS Providers:
Rating based on expert review:
- Overall Score: 4.9
- Features: 5.0
- Reliability: 5.0
- User-Friendly: 4.8
- Support: 4.9
- Pricing: 4.9
Four CPU Types, 1 to 104 vCPU, 256MB to 512GB of RAM, 5GB Storage to tens of terabytes of block storage, and up to 1174 various cloud server setup configurations, starting at $0.005/hour or $4/month. Personally, I would go with Kamatera if I had specific requirements (such as OS) since it offers a wide range of services of top-notch quality.
Kamatera is the best VPS for instant scaling. It provides a pay-as-you-go solution on a cloud infrastructure with zero maintenance and no single point of failure.
- Incredible flexibility, customization, and scaling
- Cloud infrastructure with a dozen of data centers
- Round-the-clock customer support with decades of experience
- Managed Virtual private server solutions are a bit expensive
- Requires at least a bit of technical knowledge (luckily, customer support is always available to guide you step by step in the process, even without managed support)
Features: Advanced cloud solutions for businesses of all sizes, leading cloud technology and versatile products, firewalls, load balancers, and more!
Reliability: No single point of failure with 99.95% guaranteed uptime. Data centers in America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.
User-Friendly: Flexible, fast, and reliable solutions for startups, SaaS developers, and web & app developers, with maintenance and information conveniently accessible via a single Control Panel.
Support: Live technical support around the clock, 24-hours a day, 7-days a week personal assistance.
Pricing: Pay monthly, hourly, or by the minute and only for what you use. Cancel at any time if you’re not 100% satisfied.
Cloudways is what we like to call a reseller. The company resells Virtual private server services from five original cloud providers, AWS, GCP, DigitalOcean, Linode, and Vultr. However, it bundles them with useful features, such as an easy-to-use control panel.
- Overall Score: 4.6
- Features: 4.6
- Reliability: 4.8
- User-Friendly: 4.5
- Support: 4.7
- Pricing: 4.6
Cloudways is one of the best VPS providers, granting you full control of your cloud server with a dedicated IP address and a host of resources. You can also enable enterprise-grade security, advanced CDN, and performance-enhancing features on your demanding applications.
- Super fast performance without restraints (fully optimized stack with built-in advanced cache, Cloudflare CDN)
- Time-saving simplicity (user-friendly control panel, 1-click installs, staging environment)
- Backed by 24/7 real-time expert support
- No cPanel implementations (might be confusing to beginners)
Features: All Cloudways hosting plans include unlimited application installation, 1-click installs for over ten apps, 1-click free SSL installation, free website migration, staging environment, managed backups, dedicated firewalls, SSH, and SFTP access.
Reliability: Cloudways utilizes SSD-only, HTTP/2 servers. You’ll benefit from Cloudflare Enterprise CDN, optimized stack with advanced cache, built-in WordPress and Magento cache, auto-healing servers, regular OS and patch management, and 24/7 real-time monitoring.
User-Friendly: With Cloudways, you can forget about infrastructure complexity. You’ll get the ultimate freedom to transform your online presence on its managed platform, go live in minutes, and manage like a pro.
Support: You can always reach Cloudways professionals via live chat and ticket support 24/7/365 for free. If, however, this is insufficient for your needs, you can also consider Advanced and Premium Support as paid add-ons.
Pricing: The price you’ll pay depends on the cloud provider you choose. You can start with DigitalOcean at $12 per month for 1GB RAM, 1 CPU Core, 25GB storage, and 1TB bandwidth.
An image (Screenshot) from the host’s website that best illustrates what we want to say about it
Who doesn’t like flexibility? With Ultahost, you will get to choose from a wide range of Linux and Windows OS, different programming languages, multiple locations, and host as many websites as you need. You can also install your own ISO and scale your resources with just one click!
- Overall Score: 4.9
- Features: 4.8
- Reliability: 4.8
- User-Friendly: 4.9
- Support: 4.9
- Pricing: 4.9
With Ultahost’s managed low-cost Virtual private server hosting plans, you can host unlimited websites, get unlimited bandwidth, enjoy one-click vertical scaling, and choose the control panel that you prefer (Hestia, CyberPanel, Plesk, and cPanel), and never pay for the resources that you don’t use!
- Excellent flexibility (you can choose from multiple OS options, programming languages, locations, and more)
- The provider does not make you sign a contract or pay a fixed amount for resources that you don’t use
- You can choose between four different control panels, including Hestia, CyberPanel, Plesk, and cPanel
- Storage limitations on all plans (you can get up to 750GB of storage with its Ultra Windows VPS, which is still more than enough for most)
Features: All Ultahost Virtual private server plans come with fast-paced SSD & NVMe storage, built-in cache including Varnish, Memcached, and Redis, free SSL certificates, SSH & SFTP access, dedicated IPv4 addresses, unlimited application installation, and more!
Reliability: Ultahost offers managed Virtual private servers with the highest virtual server reliability and performance built for speed. It also includes Apache and Nginx as web servers, ultra optimized servers which are powered by 14th generation Dell servers with a 99.9% uptime guarantee.
User-Friendly: You will get fully managed services with which you can enjoy excellent assistance from the provider’s team. Namely, the team will update your security patches, OS, and more, for you. You can also choose from four user-friendly control panels and manage your server from there.
Support: Ultahost offers 24/7 expert support that will help you with maintaining your server and perform automated troubleshooting if needed.
Pricing: Ultahost’s VPS plans start at $5.5/month for one CPU core, 1GB RAM, 30GB NVMe SSD, managed services, and one IPv4 dedicated IP address.
- Overall Score: 4.7
- Features: 4.8
- Reliability: 4.9
- User-Friendly: 4.5
- Support: 4.5
- Pricing: 4.6
Are you worried about server downtime? Get InterServer and enjoy the best uptime in the industry empowered with high-performance SSD storage that ensures flawless performance!
- The best control panels (cPanel, DirectAdmin, and Plesk)
- Lightning-fast speeds with a 99.9% uptime guarantee
- Full root access for full configuration on the cloud
- Not entirely beginner-friendly
Features: Flexible Virtual private server platform (Linux, Windows, or Storage) with full root access, managed support, one-click installs, and hundreds of scripts.
Reliability: Virtual private server hosting service with a 99.9% uptime guarantee. A cloud VPS infrastructure, high-performance SSD storage, lightning-fast speeds, self-healing hardware, and top-notch security.
User-Friendly: Free alternatives (DirectAdmin or Plesk) can be installed. InterServer also allows for the cPanel at an additional fee.
Support: InterServer offers managed support when you purchase four slices or more; phone and email support are also available (with fast response times).
Pricing: Flexible pricing available month-to-month, an excellent choice for a wide range of customers.
If finding the best Linux VPS is tricky, finding the best Windows VPS is mission impossible, as there are far fewer choices in this regard. We recommend Time4VPS as the top choice powered by Windows Server 2012, 2016, or 2019.
- Overall Score: 4.1
- Features: 4.0
- Reliability: 4.2
- User-Friendly: 4.1
- Support: 4.1
- Pricing: 4.2
Time4VPS offers self-managed KVM Windows VPS with amazing features designed for Windows professionals. You’ll get easy and fast service management merged with secure and scalable infrastructure at an affordable price.
- Free Windows license for every Windows Server 2012, 2016, or 2019 OS
- Easy and fast server deployments + complete control over your Virtual private server
- Seamless upscaling on cheap Windows VPS services
- The discount is not recurring (choose a longer billing period for more savings)
- Necessary features come at an extra cost (backups, SSL certificates)
Features: Intuitive GUI, automatic and instant setup, administrator access, RAID-enabled storage array, unlimited bandwidth without extra fees, free Windows OS license, IPv4 address, and IPv6 support.
Reliability: Time4VPS utilizes an Uptime Institute-certified TIER III Data Center in the center of Europe. You’ll benefit from powerful hardware, advanced software, high security, and speed.
User-Friendly: You can install your chosen template with Time4VPS’s handy Init Scripts and enjoy a fully licensed Windows machine with just a few clicks. There’s no need for a manual setup, as the scripts are executed automatically after the OS installation.
Support: Time4VPS offers assistance for the Plesk control panel of your VPS Windows. You can get support via live chat, submit a ticket to the help desk, or use its broad knowledge base and active community forum.
Pricing: With Time4VPS, you can pay monthly or annually with better discounts in the longer term. You can start at €5.49 for 1 CPU, 2GB RAM, 40GB Storage, and 4TB Bandwidth, backed up by a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Overall Score: 4.8
- Features: 4.7
- Reliability: 4.8
- User-Friendly: 4.8
- Support: 4.8
- Pricing: 4.7
If you were to upgrade from your shared hosting plan, you could easily do so using A2 Hosting’s Virtual private server solutions. With A2Hosting, you can choose from different management levels, features, and affordable pricing.
- Managed and unmanaged VPS hosting available
- Ease of use and optional full root access
- 24/7/365 Guru Crew support available
- The managed virtual private server plans are pretty expensive
- Prices increase at renewal
Features: SSD VPS hosting solutions, up to 20x faster turbo, development-friendly, free account migrations, cPanel/command line management, root access, managed support, etc.
Reliability: Managed hardware and network, turbo servers available, 99.9% uptime commitment.
User-Friendly: 100% worry-Free HostGuard server management; a seamless upgrade from a beginner’s shared hosting plan with the managed Virtual private server. The unmanaged (self-configure your custom server) is less beginner-friendly.
Support: Guru Crew support is available 24/7 with the managed Virtual private server option.
Pricing: Affordable prices at sign up, but significantly higher fees on renewal. Benefit from longer-term contracts with excellent discounts.
If you want to be in full control of your server, Hostinger is the way to go. It’s the best virtual private server provider – you get the freedom and flexibility to run it as you like, whether you’re hosting one large website or multiple smaller sites.
- Overall Score: 4.6
- Features: 4.7
- Reliability: 4.8
- User-Friendly: 4.5
- Support: 4.5
- Pricing: 4.7
Hostinger grants you full root access and unparalleled control over how you manage your server and resources. You can configure the server environment to your needs, including how you dedicate your resources, install custom software, or transform your Virtual private server for many purposes, including a VPN server, web server, mail server, or game server.
- Impressively fast website loading times and a 99.9% server uptime guarantee
- Top-notch protection (BitNinja, advanced DDoS protection, and other custom-built tools)
- Full control and flexibility to customize your Virtual private server to your needs
- No Windows-based VPS (you can choose from CentOS, Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian, and Suse)
- Limited customer support (you are responsible for your Virtual private server)
Features: You’ll get full root access, a user-friendly dashboard that simplifies server management, a dedicated IP address, FTP access and domain-based email service, automated backups, and manual live snapshots.
Reliability: You can choose from five data center locations to ensure maximum performance with minimum latency. All Hostinger servers utilize the latest Intel Xeon processors, terabytes of NVMe SSD storage, 512 GB RAM, and a 100Mb/s Network.
User-Friendly: While you’ll benefit from Hostinger’s user-friendly interface, you’ll still need technical skills to take full advantage of its self-managed Virtual private server.
Support: You’ll be responsible for your Virtual private server. However, you can still refer to Hostinger’s tutorial base for server management, creating your WordPress website on Virtual private server, and other VPS-related topics. Furthermore, you can contact their support team, available 24/7 to answer all general questions.
Pricing: Hostinger offers eight self-managed VPS plans, starting at $3.49 for 1GB RAM, 20GB SSD disk space, 1TB bandwidth, and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Who said that a Virtual private server has to cost a fortune? Contabo proves the opposite with its cloud VPS servers with fast NVMe storage and modern infrastructure at a price you’ll love. The best part is that the company is committed to delivering German quality in every aspect of its business.
- Overall Score: 4.3
- Features: 4.2
- Reliability: 4.3
- User-Friendly: 4.3
- Support: 4.3
- Pricing: 4.5
Keeping prices low is deep in Contabo’s DNA. The company utilizes long-lasting and inexpensive hardware, a fully unified hardware platform in all data centers worldwide, proprietary optimization scripts to manage the load on its servers., and takes the lean approach to offer low prices.
- One of the cheapest, high-quality VPS on the market (actively working to push costs down)
- Global availability (the US, UK, Europe, and Asia)
- Focused on providing German-quality service, security, and support
- The Windows license costs extra (the amount charged depends on the size of your Virtual private server)
- cPanel and Plesk admin panels come at an extra fee (Webmin is available free of charge)
Features: All Contabo VPS plans include API & CLI, DevOps features, instant snapshots, dedicated IPv4 and IPv6 addresses, full DNS management, and DDoS protection. You can choose from multiple OS distributions (Linux and Windows), panels & apps (cPanel, Plesk, Docker, Webmin), and custom images.
Reliability: Contabo provides energy-efficient servers in six key regions worldwide. You’ll benefit from private networking, super-fast NVMe drives, generous traffic (32TB of outgoing and unlimited inbound data transfer), and brand-new AMD EPYC processors to handle intensive workloads.
User-Friendly: You’ll get your Virtual private server provisioned in minutes and a straightforward customer control panel to manage all your services and accounts.
Support: Contabo offers first-class support 365-day-a-year via phone and email.
Pricing: With Contabo, you can start at €4.99 for 4 vCPU Cores, 8GB RAM, 50GB NVMe/200GB SSD, 1 Snapshot, 32TB Bandwidth, and unlimited incoming.
While GoDaddy offers Windows VPS as part of its offer, it excels in Linux VPS. It’s one of the best Virtual private servers for CentOS and Ubuntu, well suited for web developers and system administrators with the technical knowledge to manage a server.
- Overall Score: 1.5
- Features: 1.6
- Reliability: 1.6
- User-Friendly: 1.5
- Support: 1.4
- Pricing: 1.5
GoDaddy is one of the best unmanaged VPS providers for hosting an eCommerce store, multiple sites, web or database server, resource-heavy apps, email server, or testing environments.
- Offers both Linux (CentOS or Ubuntu) and Windows OS
- Total control with full root access and optional control panels (cPanel/WHM or Plesk Obsidian Webhost Edition)
- Excellent performance (99% uptime and high-performance NVMe SSDs)
- Limited customer support (live chat is available only during work hours)
- Misleading prices (the displayed price is a discounted offer for a three-year billing term)
Features: You’ll get full root access with SSH keys for total control, a command line, unlimited hosting accounts with optional cPanel/WHM + Installatron or Plesk Obsidian Web Host Edition, automated weekly backups with scheduling on-demand, monitoring, alert tools, DDoS protection and a free SSL for the first year.
Reliability: GoDaddy utilizes server locations around the globe, including North America, Europe, and the Asia Pacific. You’ll get high-performance NVMe SSDs powered by Virtuozzo for 3x the speed plus unlimited traffic.
User-Friendly: You’ll need an advanced degree of technical know-how and a basic understanding of Linux and the command line for the unmanaged Virtual private server. However, you can also take the easier route with fully managed support.
Support: GoDaddy offers standard hosting phone support, comprehensive help/how-to video library and technical blogs, and community peer-to-peer advice. You can also get a fully managed Virtual private server or one-time paid task-based services if you don’t have the time or skill to manage your server.
Pricing: You can get GoDaddy’s self-managed VPS starting at £3.99 for 1 CPU Core, 1GB RAM, 20GB NVMe SSD, and one additional IP address upon request. You can also consider its high RAM VPS plans, starting at £7.99 per month, or fully-managed VPS at £75.99.
Bluehost is ideal if you’re looking for powerful Virtual private server that grants you the ultimate freedom as a developer. Its high-performance servers are suitable for big plans, whether one website or more.
- Overall Score: 2.5
- Features: 2.6
- Reliability: 2.8
- User-Friendly: 2.5
- Support: 2.5
- Pricing: 2.3
Bluehost’s VPS solution truly puts you in the driver’s seat. It’s the best VPS for experienced users since it includes all the tools and resources to build incredible sites. You can host unlimited domains and websites and divide and organize your server environment as you see fit to use your Virtual private server to full capacity.
- Superior performance and speed (raw compute power, dedicated resources, SSD storage)
- Full control over your Virtual private server with full root access
- 24/7 available support assistance over several channels (live chat, tickets, phone)
- No uptime guarantee (you can experience downtime without any compensation)
- Month-to-month billing isn’t available (you have to commit longer term)
Features: All Bluehost VPS plans include multi-server management, root access, access control, cPanel/WHM, and an IP address. Bluehost’s easy-to-use VPS dashboard will simplify managing your site and analyzing performance.
Reliability: Bluehost grants you dedicated power, sufficient CPU, RAM, and storage, high-performance SSD hard drives, and unlimited bandwidth for lightning-fast speeds.
User-Friendly: You can start with a few clicks, following the given sign-up instructions. Once you have an account, you can upgrade your plan and resources using the customer dashboard, which is a fast and simple process.
Support: Bluehost’s 24/7 VPS support is always ready and happy to assist you with any questions you might have. You can reach them via live chat, tickets, and phone, or use the comprehensive Knowledgebase for self-help.
Pricing: You can start your VPS journey at $19.99 with Bluehost. You’ll get 2 Cores, 30GB SSD storage, 2GB RAM, and 1TB bandwidth on the entry-level plan.
How Did We Choose The Top 10 VPS Hosting?
- User Reviews30%
- Performance and Reliability10%
- Types of Hosting Offered5%
- Customer Support10%
- Site Speed8%
- Bandwidth and Storage3%
- Traffic Volume4%
- Scaling Potential4%
- Features Included10%
- Ease of Use4%
- Starting Price4%
- Money-back Guarantee3%
- Other Factors5%
At HostAdvice, we have performed extensive research on the hosting providers to figure out the best VPS services, the features they offer, and what sets them apart from the rest. Our experts have tested 25 products in the Virtual private server category in the past year. More importantly, we are dedicated to continually improving our review methodology. For instance, we have recently upgraded our uptime and speed monitoring processes. Each review process is based on real-time performance, meaning our experts purchase the plans, just as a regular customer would. This way, HostAdvice can compare the VPS host’s promise with measurable results. We give extra points for transparency – we like companies that stand true to their promises, regardless of what they are.
As you can spot, we’ve allocated specific percentages to different factors depending on their importance for a Virtual private server service. The higher the weight, the more critical the factor.
HostAdvice’s AI technology has sorted the best Virtual private server providers dynamically based on several key factors:
- Types of Hosting Offered: Availability of managed, unmanaged, and semi-managed VPS plans.
- Performance and Reliability: Does the Virtual private server come with an uptime commitment attached? What if you experience downtime? Does the web host take responsibility for this and compensate you in any way if it happens? You should not accept anything less than 99.9% uptime. A good VPS host will provide at least a 99.95% uptime guarantee and above.
- Site Speed: Site visitors leave if your site takes too long to load, and that’s why we analyze the site speed a VPS provider can deliver, considering factors such as SSD drives, the number and dispersion of data centers worldwide, server locations, CDN, other security enhancements and real-time performance.
- Bandwidth and Storage: How many resources do you get with the VPS plans? Storage refers to how much content you can store on the Virtual private server, including images and files, while bandwidth determines how much data your visitors can view at a certain time. In other words, both are critical to the operation of your site, so you must get “enough” of the two.
- Traffic Volume: How many visitors can the Virtual private server handle? Usually, these servers can handle anywhere between 1,000 and 1,100 users per day, which is sufficient for medium-traffic sites.
- Scaling Potential: What happens when you exceed the resources included in your VPS plan? How easy can you upgrade? Will it take a lot of time and effort on your side, or will the VPS provider handle this task (for free)?
- Features Included: numerous OS options & API, free migrations, on-demand, and live backups, native IPv6 support, DDoS, firewalls, domains, etc.
- Ease of Use: does the VPS provider allow for a user-friendly control panel option or not? Is the VPS plan appropriate for beginners and first-time users?
- Customer Support: the availability and technical knowledge of the support behind the VPS plan – preferably dedicated, technical support, available 24/7 via live chat, email, or phone.
- User Reviews: Experiences from worldwide users, beginners, professionals, and everything in between. Thousands of customers worldwide have shared their real-life experiences with specific vendors so that you get first-hand advice and honest feedback on one’s quality.
- Starting Price: Not classifying the VPS plans as cheap or expensive, but analyzing their price-value ratios. What is the lowest price of the vendor’s VPS services, and what does this offer include? Check out our VPS Pricing page for more insights.
- Money-back Guarantee: Is the Virtual private server vendor committed to customer satisfaction? If you are not happy with the service, can you get your investment back? If yes, how many days does this policy cover? The longer, the better!
- Other Factors: Awards, establishment date, brand reputation, past incidents considered.
What Is VPS, and When Do You Need It?
VPS (Virtual Private Server) mimics dedicated server environments within a shared server. Thus, it combines the best aspects of the two – dedicated resources at an affordable price.
A VPS provider splits a single piece of hardware (the parent physical server) into multiple virtual servers using virtualization technology, called a hypervisor. In turn, it creates several separate servers on the Internet.
The best Virtual private servers grants users root access to change the hosting environment and install apps independently of other users, which isn’t possible with a shared hosting plan. In addition, VPS servers are much faster, more reliable, and secure than shared servers. At the same time, this piece of software that emulates dedicated hardware is much more affordable than dedicated servers.
In general, VPS makes a perfect choice for individuals or businesses that have begun their web hosting journey with a shared server but have eventually outgrown this plan. If you need more secure environments on a budget, a Virtual private server is the best choice for your website!
Virtual Servers Compared to Other Web Hosting Options
What makes Virtual private server worthy of your attention, time, and money? Let’s see how it compares against the two remaining most popular solutions – shared and dedicated hosting.
- Shared Hosting: The web host handles everything with shared hosting, making it an excellent option for beginners in terms of ease of use and pricing. However, all users get the same “fair share” of resources, meaning you cannot isolate yourself from others. If another user on the same server experiences a spike in traffic or a security threat, your site will also go through issues. With fewer resources available, you will notice a decrease in speeds, inconsistent performance, or even adverse effects on your SEO rankings.
Shared hosting is best for beginners in the niche, bloggers, websites with low traffic, or individuals on a tight budget.
- VPS Hosting: Virtual private server overcomes the issues of shared hosting, allowing for dedicated resources, dedicated IPs, root access, overall better speed, performance, security, SEO rankings, and so on. Thus, it’s the perfect alternative for anyone willing to take the next step from shared hosting and has the budget to back it up!
VPS hosting is best for medium to high traffic sites, programmers, game makers, and SaaS providers.
- Dedicated Hosting: While a Virtual private server is a middle ground, dedicated servers are the most advanced web hosting solution available on the market. With a dedicated web hosting plan, you would get a physical server with all components, including CPU, RAM, and bandwidth, all to yourself. However, these advantages come at a price, making dedicated web hosting the most expensive solution.
Dedicated hosting is best for high-traffic sites, enterprises, or anyone with a budget and tech skills to maintain their own “box.”
What Are the Benefits of Having A Virtual private server?
If you are still indecisive, here’s a summary of all that you can get with a VPS provider:
- Dedicated or reserved resources isolated from other users on the same server
- Zero setup fee, making Virtual private server more affordable than dedicated web hosting
- Less hardware cost by considering a failover cluster to a single machine
- Instant allocation of server resources upon the server setup (including the operating system and CPU)
- Flexibility and scalability to increase your Web hosting resources to support the growth of your website
- Customization options for your resources depending on your needs (increase/decrease on-demand)
- SSH root access (like in a dedicated server) for complete control over the server configuration and application installation
- Better security levels than shared hosting due to virtualization technology separating you from others on the same server
- Use your OS and software (with a few exceptions, such as VPS providers that limit your use to Ubuntu)
- Access to high levels of storage and bandwidth, better reliability and uptime
- Transfer files from PC to Windows VPS through Remote Desktop
- Minimal user interaction with the servers (Managed Virtual private server solution offers pre-installed control panel and software)
- a Virtual private server can replace your physical computer with one running in the cloud
How Much Does A Virtual private server Cost?
As mentioned, a Virtual private server costs less than dedicated servers but more than shared hosting plans. However, the cost of VPS hosting can vary greatly, depending on several factors.
It would be best to differentiate between Managed VPS vs. Unmanaged VPS (but more on that later). While you can pay approximately $5 for an unmanaged VPS, managed VPS prices range between $20 to $100 and more per month, depending on the configuration.
Even so, pricing is a subjective matter, and what might be cheap for you can be expensive for another user. So, that type of classification makes no sense. What you should focus on instead is the trade-off between price and quality.
Initially, you might get a cheap Virtual private server provider but pay for the service in other ways. For instance, you can experience a limited feature set, have to pay for many add-ons (included for free in the best VPS plans), a slow website, and insufficient levels of customer support. In the end, you might lose customers due to worse performance, harm your SEO rankings and overall profitability.
On the other hand, you can pay excessive amounts of money – but “expensive” doesn’t always equal “superior.” The solution is to find the proper balance between price and value. And the best way of doing so is to rely on sound research on hardware components, level of support, and overall performance of the VPS provider.
How Does VPS Work?
VPS (Virtual Private Servers) utilizes virtualization technology, such as KVM (for Linux) and Hyper – V (for Windows), to provide users with dedicated resources on a server with multiple users. The VPS provider uses the hypervisor, which defines CPU, memory, and disk allocation to divide a single dedicated server (bare-metal server) into dozens of virtual machines.
A Virtual private server is similar to shared hosting because it hosts multiple users on a single physical machine. However, these users don’t have to compete with others for bandwidth, space, and storage. Instead, they get their own reserved share of resources. In turn, a Virtual private server is similar to dedicated web hosting because it offers reserved resources, privacy, speed, and security. However, VPS customers get a single share of the dedicated server, virtually (not physically) separated from other users.
The main advantage of the virtualization technology is that other users on the same server cannot hog your resources if they experience a traffic spike. They have a limit on their components or resource usage, and even if they exceed it, they cannot use up yours (which is the case with shared hosting).
In addition, VPS provides you with a dedicated IP address, meaning if another of your server neighbor experiences a security attack (say DDoS), your site will remain unaffected. Furthermore, you can add to your privacy with custom firewalls settings.
How To Choose The Best Virtual Private Server Hosting?
- Hardware Components: Match your project/website needs with the VPS components (CPU, RAM, Bandwidth)
- VPS Performance: Select a reliable VPS provider with an uptime guarantee of at least 99.95%, fast-loading speeds (SSD), and quick response time (ping).
- Ease Of Use: Get a user-friendly cPanel VPS hosting and customer support team available 24/7. Consider all advantages that managed Virtual private server has to provide over unmanaged VPS.
- Set Of Features: what additional features do you get with the plan (free migration, free remote backups, server optimization, automatic patching, and a LiteSpeed web server)?
- Pricing: is the VPS a good value for its price? Can you increase this ratio further with another alternative?
If you still cannot pick the right VPS provider for you, feel free to jump to the bottom of this article to get further assistance on what’s important when choosing a VPS host.
Managed vs. Unmanaged VPS Hosting: Which One Should You Choose?
Are you deciding between getting a managed or an unmanaged VPS for your business? The question you should ask yourself, at this point, is, how much control do you want, or are you comfortable having?
The key difference between managed and unmanaged VPS is who assumes the core server maintenance and management responsibilities.
If you go for a managed VPS, you will be able to take the hands-off approach, meaning the web host will take care of all technical aspects of your server. On the other hand, you would have to take on this responsibility with the unmanaged option. That’s why unmanaged VPS plans are significantly cheaper than managed solutions.
What Is Unmanaged VPS Hosting?
With an unmanaged VPS, you will get a bare and flexible server with no pre-installed software, applications, or operating system. The VPS provider is responsible for maintaining the hardware and performing system-level health checks. On the other hand, you would have to assume server management and maintenance responsibilities.
And since you receive no licenses or support, you must have some advanced skills for this option, such as managing Linux CLI, Secure Shell (SSH), Security information and event management (SIEM), Web server software management, or Disaster Recovery (DR), specifically backup and snapshot management.
What Is Managed VPS Hosting?
A managed VPS comes with a pre-installed server administration software on a predetermined operating system, such as Web Host Manager (WHM) or cPanel on a CentOS server, or Plesk, DirectAdmin, or Virtualizor for Linux.
With a managed VPS, the VPS provider takes on server maintenance and management responsibilities, such as server monitoring, technical support, software updates, malware protection, or DDoS protection. Better yet, you can benefit from 24/7 customer support via live chat, phone, or email and get technical assistance if some issues affect your server.
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What Is Semi-Managed VPS Hosting?
A semi-managed VPS is a middle ground between managed and unmanaged VPS hosting.
The VPS provider grants you a bare server with core software installation and support, such as operating system updates and patches, security enhancements, full web server support, proactive response, and restoration of monitoring events.
However, you will not receive control panel support, updates, patches, virus and spam protection, or external migrations (which is the case with a managed Virtual private server).
Linux VPS vs. Windows VPS: Which Is The Best Option For Hosting On A VPS?
If you are running a Python or an ASP.NET application, you should opt for Windows VPS. The Microsoft technologies will only work with Windows servers.
However, if your web application is developed with PHP/Node/Ruby, Linux VPS will be the best choice for you. PHP is much harder to configure on Windows. So, you must ensure that the Virtual private server runs a user-friendly control panel, like cPanel, especially if you have no extensive experience or skills. Another great option would be the customized solutions, such as Scala Hosting’s SPanel and Webdock.io’s feature-rich control panel.
If you’re using a Node application, you will be set with Ubuntu. With this option, you can customize the webserver based on your preference.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) vs. Google Cloud Platform (GCP): Which One Offers The Best Hosting For Virtual private server?
Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud offer VPC (Virtual Private Cloud) services. It’s similar to a Virtual private server; only VPC provides all resources on-demand in the cloud, utilizing different network technologies, such as encryption, tunneling, and virtual LANs (VLANs). In turn, VPC delivers isolated cloud environments.
AWS and GCP are both top-rated solutions, but AWS has a lower average latency error than GCP, accounting for faster performance. For instance, GCP exhibited three times the network latency compared to AWS and Azure when connecting Europe to India, says BunnyShell.
Besides, the CPU of AWS can compute more operations per second. The read/write and network speeds are much higher than GCP.
How To Choose The Right VPS Hosting?
VPS hosting requires profound expertise to run well. When choosing a quality Virtual private server service, you should consider several factors, including hardware components, your skill level, project needs, and budget. Essentially, your choice of a VPS provider will determine the performance and reliability of your website.
Here are the key factors you need to dedicate special attention to when choosing a Virtual private server.
1. Get A Managed (or Unmanaged) VPS
The first thing you should consider is the type of VPS you need. It will define your ease of use and the scope of services you can expect.
With an unmanaged VPS, the web host takes on the responsibility of ensuring that the Virtual private server works and is connected to the network, but that’s all there is. If, however, you select a managed VPS provider, you can expect and analyze several other factors.
2. Match The Virtual private server With Your Project/Website Needs
While shared hosting is more oriented to beginners, Virtual private server resembles dedicated servers more closely. So, if you have decided to upgrade from your shared hosting plan, it’s essential to approach the Virtual Private Server as a professional.
You should consider the hardware components. Whether you select managed or unmanaged VPS, you will need to analyze the machine’s hardware specifications: CPU, RAM, and Bandwidth.
- CPU (Central Processing Unit): It’s better to go for a processor with more cores and modest clock speeds than the fastest processor available. For example, 2xCPUs with 2.4 GHz and ten cores can grant you better performance than 2xCPUs with 3 GHz and four cores.
- RAM (Memory): You need at least enough memory to support the number of workloads you run on the system. Less memory can compromise your consolidation or your performance. However, adding more will only overspend your money. If you have a total of 40 threads of potential workloads (as in the example), and each workload requires 2 GB, you will need at least 80 GB of memory on your server. The closest binary equivalent to this number is 96 GB.
- Bandwidth: The adequate amount depends on the size of your website, the number of visitors, and the number of pages they visit. 5 GB of monthly bandwidth is sufficient for an average-size page of 50KB, 20,000 monthly visitors, and five pages per visitor.
- Storage Space: You need sufficient storage to support your site. While calculating the total size of your website isn’t very straightforward, you can use a web page size checker tool to estimate your storage needs. Usually, 5GB is sufficient for small sites, while 50GB works for regular eCommerce sites.
And that’s not where it ends. Instead of entirely relying on the promises of the VPS provider, you should also review what happens in practice. At this point, you should also review real-time results and measurements, including reliability (uptime) and stability (response time over a period).
3. Measure VPS Performance and Reliability
Your Virtual private server should be able to handle traffic spikes, and you can estimate this ability using two performance metrics of your potential VPS provider:
- Uptime Rate: how much time of the total your server will stay up, which ideally should be 100%. In reality, you can expect anywhere around 99.9% backed up with a Service Level Agreements (SLA). You should check how much uptime the provider guarantees and avoid anything below 99.95%. Keep in mind; scheduled maintenance won’t qualify for the uptime commitment.Warning: Even a 0.01% difference can amount to a couple of hours of downtime, so consider the disaster this type of outage can cause for your website.
- Response Time: the time it takes the server to respond to a request, measured by TTFB (Time to First Byte) or how many milliseconds it takes to receive the first byte of the page after sending an HTTP request. The rule of thumb is the faster, the better. Still, it would help if you did not accept anything below 600ms – anything above is considered sufficient.
In addition, you can test the Virtual private server performance / perform server benchmarking using various scripting tools. This way, you can fetch various information about the server, including CPU and RAM, and perform various tests, including Sequential Disk Speed Tests, iperf3 Network Speed Tests (IPv4 and IPv6), and Geekbench 4 Benchmark Test.
4. Ease of Use and Support
While managed VPS can significantly facilitate your user experience, it doesn’t end there. Different VPS providers allow for different features and support. The best option at this point is to get an easy-to-use control panel, such as the cPanel. It grants complete access to essential features that significantly enhance the website’s performance.
At this point, you should also consider the help and support you can get. Customer support is an issue that’s easy to overlook while choosing your VPS plan. However, if something goes wrong with your site, you’ll soon regret not giving this more consideration.
So, whether you get a managed or an unmanaged VPS, make sure that the VPS provider offers 24/7 customer support. The support team must have highly experienced professionals with years of experience in the industry to promptly fix technical issues. Also, make sure that they respond to the queries quickly. Try making a test call or chat with the support team to analyze their responsiveness and proficiency.
5. Set Of Features and Pricing
The VPS service’s set of features and customization options can either make it or break it. You should take a close look at the feature set before subscribing to any VPS plan. Does the Virtual private server provide root access? What are the security features that it offers? Can you benefit from free migrations? Can you choose from several operating systems? And so on.
If you choose a Managed VPS hosting plan, look at the additional features it offers, including free migration, free remote backups, server optimization, automatic patching, and a LiteSpeed webserver.
After all, different users have different needs and preferences. So, it would be best if you found what works for you. Ensure you are not paying extra for add-ons that you can get for free with other VPS providers, and you will be good to go!
Best VPS Hosting: Final Recommendations
You can choose from so many virtual private hosting solutions to suit your needs. However, you will have to make several choices along the way. Both managed and unmanaged VPS solutions have their respective pros and cons. So, which one works better for you? Make sure to match the best VPS provider with your project/website needs, skill, experience, and budget. Also, don’t overspend on resources you don’t need! After all, the main benefit of a Virtual private server service is that you can start small and scale as your site needs grow.
Clearly, there’s no one-size-fits-all, and there’s no winner in the race. Which is the best virtual sever provider in 2022? It depends on your needs! The best way to know what works for you is by testing. So, why not get the provider and see how it goes? After all, these VPS providers come with money-back guarantees so that you won’t spend a dime in the process!