If you are planning to own a website and are looking for a web hosting provider, you’ll notice that there are basically two main types of hosting services: Windows hosting and Linux hosting. It is important to know the differences between these two types of hosting platforms because which platform you choose can determine the performance of your website.
The first step you should take when determining which hosting platform is right for you, is to write down a list of all the features that your personal or business website will require. You might list items such as a shopping cart, the ability to accept user data via forms, e-mail abilities, or reliable and robust security features.
If you happen to be running a Microsoft website, you’ll need to use some form of Windows hosting. Sites that operate with Windows hosting platforms tend to be interactive sites filled with dynamic content. Windows hosting usually leads to websites that have a smooth and streamlined user interface, that allows for the user to have convenient access to the database. Sites that would benefit from this type of platform include large-scale business websites such as financial institutions, which often place enormous demands on a database that needs to handle thousands of users simultaneously. It may come as a surprise then, that given the ability to handle complex database interactions, Windows hosting requires very little experience for a webmaster to manage. On the other hand, Linux hosting should be reserved for a more experienced administrator.
One of the reasons that it is vital to decide on your type of hosting platform is that converting between Windows hosting and Linux hosting is virtually impossible. Having to go through a conversion like this is generally considered to be the result of lack of knowledge and poor planning.
Stability and reliability are two of the features that Linux hosting is best known for. For this reason, customers with websites hosted on Linux servers don’t have to worry as much about security as users who host their websites on Windows servers. If you own a website where security is paramount, you’ll enjoy greater peace of mind by hosting your website on a Linux server. Obviously, when security is an issue, customers will feel more at ease giving up personal information on a protected, reliable web host. While forums, online surveys and other interactive applications aren’t quite as easy to administer with Linux hosting, these servers can still handle their fair share of dynamic content.
Another factor that may help you decide what type of hosting you want for your website is the programming language that is used to build your site. Linux hosts support PHP, PERL, and Python code, while Windows hosts support ASP code. Linux is consider to be open source code, meaning that it is readily available and free for modification by the programmer. This leads to greater flexibility and affordability when it comes to integrating with third-party applications. This represents a very cost-effective and efficient platform, ideal for small businesses and websites that are works in progress. on the other hand, if your website has access to a team of developers who are well-versed in Windows hosting and the ASP that is required to program them, then spending the extra money at the start of the project will reap benefits later on down the road.