VPS stands for Virtual Private Server and refers to a private, emulated dedicated hosting environment created through virtualization on a host (a computer or other device connected to other computers or devices via a network), server (called the “parent server”), or cluster of servers. It acts like a physical server but, in reality, it’s a piece of software that’s emulating dedicated hardware.
Cloud VPS is a type of hosting where multiple companies use isolated instances on the same host or parent server. This is perhaps the most common type of VPS hosting — when you hear someone talk about VPS, it’s most likely Cloud VPS. As you probably guessed based on the word “cloud,” another benefit is that you can access your Cloud VPS environments from anywhere.

Essentially, here’s the criteria I would use to judge things – if your site is made up of primarily static, HTML-based content, then you probably don’t need a VPS package.  However, if you have a large amount of files stored, multiple sites, dynamic content, and the possibility of major traffic from time to time, then you might consider upgrading to a VPS. It’s a powerful package that allows you to do more than you could with a shared hosting plan, but requires less investment than a dedicated server.

Operating System virtualization refers primarily to Type-2 hypervisors like KVM or platforms like OpenVZ & Virtuozzo that share the Linux kernel (+ drivers) between partitions on the same web server hardware. This form of VPS is common in managed cloud plans where the web hosting company provides a custom web server stack software such as LAMP/LEMP pre-installed on a VM partition. Multiple customers can share a single dedicated or rackmount server with better security, file isolation, database, and programming language extension support than shared hosting provides, as well as having access to a higher level of web server resources when processing scripts like PHP, Python, or Node.js code. Some forms of OS virtualization will also permit Windows, Linux, & BSD to be installed on the same physical hardware.
Do you remember those times when you were living on a college campus with very noisy roommates? Or maybe they were super quiet and you enjoyed every day? The point is, it was a gamble - you never knew whom you ended up with. This is pretty much the same as having shared hosting account - you haven’t the faintest idea who is your roommate on a server. The analogy may sound funny but if someone on a shared server becomes a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack target or get blocked for mass mailing, other accounts on the server will be affected as well. Also, if a shared account abuses server resources, the whole server will be impacted. Using a VPS is like owning a house with a 9 foot privacy fence. You won’t be bothered no matter what your neighbors are doing.
The force driving server virtualization is similar to that which led to the development of time-sharing and multiprogramming in the past. Although the resources are still shared, as under the time-sharing model, virtualization provides a higher level of security, dependent on the type of virtualization used, as the individual virtual servers are mostly isolated from each other and may run their own full-fledged operating system which can be independently rebooted as a virtual instance.
A virtual private server refers to a virtual machine which is generally sold as a service by service providers which provide Internet hosting. A VPS tends to run its own copy of operating systems where the customers are granted super user-level access to the server, basically allowing them to install nearly any software that can run on the relevant operating system.
Essentially, here’s the criteria I would use to judge things – if your site is made up of primarily static, HTML-based content, then you probably don’t need a VPS package.  However, if you have a large amount of files stored, multiple sites, dynamic content, and the possibility of major traffic from time to time, then you might consider upgrading to a VPS. It’s a powerful package that allows you to do more than you could with a shared hosting plan, but requires less investment than a dedicated server.

The web hosting company will also provide regular web server software, installed programming language extensions, & firewall upgrades. Managed VPS plans running Windows normally include the use of Plesk for administration of domains and web server settings, while VPS plans running Ubuntu, Debian, Slackware, etc. can be administered using Webmin or Virtualmin under a free open source license.
Liquid Web has worked hard to build a competitive VPS offering, and as mentioned in this guide, third-party testing has found our VPS hosting outperforms Rackspace, DigitalOcean, and Amazon's. Moreover, our customer reviews will bear out that our customer service and support teams, the Most Helpful Humans in HostingTM, deliver responsive support, pro-active service, and immense value to the businesses we work with.

In answering this question, maybe it’s better to examine how VPS hosting fits in to the overall offerings of most hosting companies. Shared hosting is just that – your site is hosted on a machine with a bunch of other sites, and each of you share the same resources, including RAM, disk space, and CPU.  Your site uses what it needs if it’s available, and if it’s not – well, that’s the limitation of shared hosting. Likewise, a dedicated server is also self-explanatory –  your site is the only one hosted on server, and you have all the aforementioned resources available at your beck and call. Dedicated hosting is therefore  for those large sites with big databases and lots of traffic, whereas the limitations of shared hosting’s usually prevent it from housing that kind of site. Dedicated servers are also relatively expensive, while one can get a shared hosting plan for under $10 per month.
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