Are you new to web hosting? Confused about a whole new world of terms you need to understand; choices you need to make and processes you need to follow?. Well, don’t worry. Web hosting is easy to learn and navigate, once you have all the information in place. So, that’s what we’re going to do – helping you understand the basics of web hosting – what it is and what terms you need to know.
What is Web Hosting?
In simple words, hosting is the home of your website. If you own a website, you need a place to host it. Web hosting is the process where you rent or buy server space to host your website on the World Wide Web. In order to be viewed online, website content like HTML, CSS, as well as images, need to be hosted on a server.
When a hosting provider offers space on the webserver for your website to store its files, it means that they are hosting your website. Every website you visit is hosted on a server. The amount of space that you can get on a server is based on the type of web hosting you choose. For instance, in Shared Hosting and VPS Hosting, you get a part of a whole physical server for your website. However, in Dedicated Hosting, the entire server is dedicated for your use.
If you’re looking to create a stable and reliable online presence for your audience, you need reliable hosting. To choose that you’ve got to understand some basics of web hosting. Here are 10 terms to familiarise yourself with, when you are looking into web hosting.
Essential Web Hosting Terms
- What is a Server?
A server is a system or computer that offers resources, services, data or programs to other computers (called clients) over a network. Essentially, when computers share resources with client machines they are regarded as servers. The different types of servers include web servers, virtual servers or mail servers.
- What is a Domain?
A domain name is your website name. It is the address where users can access your website. Your domain name can be a combination of different letters and numbers and can be used with different domain name extensions, such as .com, .net and more. You must register the domain name before you use it, and it must be unique. No two websites can have the same domain name.
Bandwidth is the volume of information that can be sent over a connection over a particular period of time. This is calculated in megabits per second. It is often confused with speed. However, bandwidth is the amount of information you receive per second, while speed is how quickly that information is sent, received or downloaded.
- What is Disk Space?
Also known as disk storage, storage capacity or disk capacity, disk space refers to the maximum amount of data that a disk, disc or drive is capable of storing. This capacity is often displayed in MB (Megabytes) GB (Gigabytes) or TB (Terabytes). In web hosting, disk space refers to the amount of data you can store on the webserver. The amount of space you need depends on the size of your website.
- What is CPU?
When you host a website on a server, the CPU (Central Processing Unit) handles all the information requests and helps execute programs. The bigger the CPU, the more it can do, the more information it can process before losing performance. If multiple requests are made to the CPU, each will be queued and handled in turn. Each request will get a fraction of a second of processing time before the next request is handled. Think of it as the brains behind the entire operation.
- What is SSL?
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer and is the standard technology for keeping your internet connection safe. It safeguards any private or sensitive data sent between two systems, preventing hackers from modifying or reading any of the information exchanged. It does so by using encryption algorithms to conceal data, preventing it from being leaked.
- What is Managed/Unmanaged Hosting?
In order to host your website online, you need a hosting plan. One of the choices you’ll have to make with a hosting plan is managed or unmanaged hosting. Unmanaged hosting allows you more control over the server, whereas, with managed hosting, your hosting provider will handle most of the tasks like automated backups, updates, security scans and maintenance.
- What are Operating Systems?
Operating Systems, like Windows and Linux, are the interface between computer hardware and a computer user. It is a software, which performs all basic tasks, including file management, process management, handling input and output, memory management and managing peripheral devices like printers and disk drives.
- What are Uptime and Downtime?
Uptime is the period of uninterrupted time that a hosting system experiences. It is the number of hours that a server is available and working. The ideal uptime would be 100%, however, that is hard to achieve. Downtime is the exact opposite. It refers to a period where a system, server or network is shut down or unavailable for us. This could be due to attacks, system crashes, system reboots etc.
- What is Control Panel?
A Control Panel effectively allows you to take charge of the web hosting environment and smoothens how you manage your services. This includes web hosting, mailboxes, DNS settings, server databases and more. Another important part of the Control Panel is monitoring. You can use a Control Panel to monitor the use of memory, CPU and bandwidth. It essentially helps you manage your hosting package. A Control Panel covers a wide variety of tasks, like managing domain names, creating and managing email accounts, installing applications and more.
Now that you know the basics of web hosting, it’s time to put this knowledge to the test. Visit HostGator and check out our web hosting plans. We offer unmetered bandwidth, quick installations, 99.9 per cent uptime, steady 24×7 customer support to handhold you through problems that need to be taken care of and more. Contact us today to find yourself the best home for your website.