Dedicated servers are to hosting what designer labels are to fashion – they’re top end – and just like Prada and Gucci clothing, they can come at a cost.
In this blog, we offer up a few top tips for finding the most affordable dedicated servers you can.
What is a dedicated server?
If you’re reading this blog, you’ll probably already know what a dedicated server is and you can skip to the tips.
However, for readers who aren’t entirely sure here’s a simple explanation.
Dedicated server hosting is a type of hosting that gives customers an entire server all to themselves.
All the resources on that server belong to them and they can configure the server with the operating system, control panel and apps that they need.
Dedicated server hosting can be contrasted to the following types of hosting:
Shared hosting: in this sort of hosting multiple customers share the resources on a server or cluster of servers (shared cloud hosting).
Virtual private server hosting: this type of hosting occupies the middle ground between shared and dedicated.
In this sort of hosting, you get your own resources. However, these resources are made private through virtualisation – you still share a physical machine/s with other customers.
Are dedicated servers worth the price?
If you run a simple single page website or a low-traffic blog, you don’t need a dedicated sever. Shared hosting will probably suit your needs.
However, dedicated servers come into their own when:
- You run resource intensive websites or applications
- You have high traffic sites
- You offer live media streaming
- You run a gaming server
- You build sites and apps that require you to install bespoke software
- You build multiple sites for clients
On top of this, dedicated servers have a reputation for being:
- The most reliable form of hosting: because you don’t share resources with anyone else
- The most flexible form of hosting: because you can configure your server in almost any way you want
- The most secure form of hosting: because you’re in full control should the worst come to the worst and a security breach happens
So how do you get your hands on a cheap dedicated server?
Self-managed dedicated servers tend to be less pricy than managed ones.
With a self-managed server, the hosting company will be responsible for:
- Server hardware
- Power and network availability
- Manual reboot availability
- Control panel availability
The customer meanwhile will be responsible for:
- Server software and performance
- Configuring hosting and email settings
- Securing the server
- Network configuration
- Installation of third-party modules and plug-ins
Look for annual billing
Often, if you pay for your server annually, you’ll get a better price than if you pay for it monthly.
So be sure to look at the cost of an annual plan as well as the monthly cost.
Look at the small print of sales
It’s easy to be drawn in by sales that promise a dedicated server for prices like £1 a month.
However, if you see an offer like this, be sure to look at the small print.
- How long does that price apply for?
- How much does the price rise to after the initial offer?
- How long are you tied in to a contract for after the initial price expires?
- What is the renewal cost for the contract in question? Is the company known for imposing price rises on existing customers?
Consider the quality of the tech
It’s one thing to find a cheap deal on a dedicated server, it’s quite another to get a quality server for an affordable price.
Here are a few signs of quality in a server:
- NVMe SSDs not SATA SSDs: the former have been shown to perform up to four times faster than the latter
- Uptime SLAs: for example, at Heart Internet we offer 99.9% uptime as part of our Service Level Agreement
- Intel Xeon-D CPUs: Designed for demanding computing, these processors are fast and powerful
Look at the add-ons
Hosting companies tend to charge extra if you choose a Windows server over a Linux server and for extras like control panels.
So be sure to factor the cost of these add-ons into your calculations when comparing the costs of dedicated servers.
Don’t underestimate the value of support
Quality support is worth its weight in gold. So, before you commit to a dedicated server plan, be sure to check out the TrustPilot reviews for the company in question.
Look for words like:
- Super stars
You’ll find all of the above in the TrustPilot reviews for Heart Internet.
Plus, look for options like live chat and scrutinise the opening hours of phone support to be sure you’ll get the best support should you need it.
Dedicated servers from Heart Internet
You can discover more about Heart Internet’s range of self-managed Dedicated Servers on our product pages.
Plans come with up to 256GB RAM and up to 16 CPUs – that’s 32 threads.
Plus, they feature unlimited traffic with 1Gbps of bandwidth, a choice of NVMe SSDs or HDDs and performance monitoring.