If you are familiar with hosting control panels, shell commands, and you have basic server administration and troubleshooting skills, then unmanaged VPS is the way to go. Note that while you purchase self managed VPS, you should be capable of managing applications, software, services installed on your VPS. Also, you must know installation/uninstallations, resource monitoring, server performance tweaking and troubleshooting of any technical issues.
Two unique features that InMotion VPS hosting provides for free are the Resource Monitoring Dashboard which provides you with charts and graphs to monitor resource usage and allocation on your VPS partition and the Live-State Snapshots functionality, which goes beyond the (free) daily backups and allow you to restore your machine to a specific “known” working state.
Unlike managed VPS plans, unmanaged VPS plans are not actively managed by A2 Hosting. Unmanaged VPS plans are for more advanced users who are comfortable using the command-line interface and doing system administration tasks. These plans include root account access so you can customize the server as much as necessary. As a result, you are responsible for the following items:
A VPS doesn’t just have more RAM, disk space, and a proprietary share of CPU than a shared account. Depending on the provider, some VPS plans offer burstable memory, which is a pool of RAM set aside for extraordinary events. This is the stuff that can help counter the so-called “Digg-effect,” that much-whispered about occurrence that’s the simultaneous hope and fear of everyone who runs a web site. When you have an unexpected high traffic event, burstable memory will call on a pool of reserved, shared memory to satisfy the needs of temporary high traffic. This is not available on shared servers and, while the necessary memory is available on a dedicated server, your site might not get the kind of traffic on a daily basis to justify the expense of a dedicated server. Again, not all VPS plans have burstable memory, so ask your provider if their VPS plans do.