What are Cloud Servers?
What are Cloud Servers?
Cloud servers offer great benefits over the traditional options of shared or dedicated servers.
In some respects cloud servers work in the same way as physical servers but the functions they provide can be very different.
When opting for cloud hosting, clients are renting virtual server space rather than renting or purchasing physical servers. These are often paid for by the hour, depending on the capacity required at any particular time.
Traditional Servers vs. Cloud Servers
Traditionally, there are two main options for hosting; shared hosting and dedicated hosting.
- The cheaper option, as servers are shared between the hosting provider’s clients (e.g. one client’s website will be hosted on the same server as those of other clients)
- Suitable for small enterprises, where the required capacity is relatively low
- Setup is inflexible and cannot cope with a large amount of traffic
- A much more advanced form of hosting, whereby clients purchase whole physical servers
- The entire server is dedicated to one client, with no one else sharing it
- In some instances, a client may utilise multiple servers which are all dedicated to their use
- Allows for full control over hosting
- Capacity needs to be predicted, with enough resource and processing power to cope with expected traffic levels. If this is underestimated it can lead to a lack of necessary resource during busy periods, while overestimating will mean paying for unnecessary capacity
- Clients get the best of both worlds: resource can be scaled up or scaled down accordingly, making it more flexible and, therefore, more cost-effective
- When there is more demand placed on the servers, capacity can be automatically increased to match demand without needing to be paid for on a permanent basis
- Cloud servers can run on a hypervisor. The role of a hypervisor is to control the capacity of operating systems so it is allocated where needed
- There are multiple cloud servers which are available to each particular client. This allows computing resource to be dedicated to a client if and when it is necessary – additional capacity is temporarily accessed when required, and then removed when no longer needed
- Cloud servers offer more redundancy – if one server fails, others will take its place