The rapid rise of remote working, and the continual growth of the internet and the role technology plays in our lives has placed increasing demands on business tech. Many people - especially those new to servers and hosting, have found it difficult to distinguish between VPS hosting and cloud-based hosting, and which would be best for their project.

It’s an easy mistake to make, and there are certainly some similarities - but virtual private servers and cloud servers operate very differently, and are managed differently too. Each has its own benefits and limitations, making them especially suited to a range of projects. So, if you’re torn between VPS and cloud hosting, keep reading to find out which would work best for your venture.

What is VPS hosting?

A VPS (or virtual private server) is a type of hosting service that effectively spreads resources over several virtual machines contained inside a single physical server. This gives you many of the same advantages as a dedicated server, but at a more affordable price.

How does VPS hosting work?

Simply put, a VPS uses advanced virtualisation technology to break up one physical server into multiple virtual ones, which can then be used individually in a similar way to a dedicated server. While the physical server you’re using is technically shared - your virtual portion of it is secure, and you’ll have your own dedicated resources.

Benefits of VPS hosting


Cost-effectiveness

In terms of cost, VPS hosting is pricier than shared hosting but far more affordable than a dedicated or cloud server - for the additional security and resources, it’s well worth it.

Control and customisation

With an unmanaged VPS hosting package, you’ll have root access, giving you total autonomy over the server. That means any installations, applications and even the operating system are at your discretion.

Speed

With shared hosting, your project’s performance can be directly impacted by the activity of other users on the server, whereas a VPS needn’t share bandwidth.

Scalability

When you opt for a VPS, you’ll have the option to upgrade your server to one with more resources as your project grows.

Security

The virtualisation tech used in a VPS isolates your data from other users, so while you’re on a shared physical server, your information is protected.

Dedicated resources

VPS hosting gives you access to a pool of dedicated resources, so your project won’t need to share RAM, storage, CPU or bandwidth with any other users.

What is cloud hosting?

Cloud hosting is arguably the premium hosting solution currently available on the market. While it may not be the right choice for a project with a small budget, there are a lot of reasons to recommend it. With cloud hosting, you get access to an unlimited network of virtual cloud resources, where applications and solutions are deployed.

Find out more about the different use cases for cloud servers.

How does cloud hosting work?

A cloud hosting service uses a network made up of many interconnected virtual servers, which work together as a single server would. This means that any hosting resources for your project are replicated across every server in the network - so if one server goes down, there’s no disruption to your service.

Benefits of cloud hosting


Reliability

Cloud hosting should guarantee a high level of uptime. If one server in the network goes down, another will take over automatically, minimising any impact on performance.

Flexibility

While a traditional hosting setup is quite rigid, cloud hosting is very flexible, and your resources can be easily scaled up or down in line with the development of your project.

No geographical ties

As cloud hosting is completely virtual, there’s no obligation for you to be based near the location of a specific physical server, giving you complete geographical freedom.

Economical

With cloud hosting, you only pay for what you use, which means you’ll never get tied into a contract where you’re paying for more than your project needs.

Collaboration

International or remote organisations with staff located in different countries can also benefit from cloud hosting, as the same files can be accessed and worked on simultaneously, from anywhere in the world.

Backups

The multi-server setup that cloud hosting uses means that data is automatically backed up in multiple places, so recovery and restorations are quick and easy.

VPS hosting vs. cloud hosting

Ultimately, choosing between a VPS and cloud hosting will come down to preference, budget and the nature of your project’s needs. For example, a VPS allocates a specific amount of resources, and if your project exceeds this before you have the chance to upgrade, you’ll run into performance issues. By contrast, cloud hosting can easily handle a sudden increase in resource requirements - another server in the network would simply take over to spread the load. This makes cloud hosting the perfect choice for projects where a lot of resources are anticipated from the off, with a little extra budget to spare.

If you’re still weighing up VPS hosting and cloud hosting, take a look at the comparison table below, where we’ve laid out all their core similarities and differences.

Once you’ve figured out which type of service is best suited to your project, take a look at our range of affordable VPS Hosting and Cloud Hosting packages, or get in touch with our sales team.