Web Hosting (also called hosting & shared hosting) is one real server where allocated resources are shared between websites i.e. users via some cPanel interface etc.
The server mainly runs over one CPU, RAM, one Apache & MySQL server resources which are shared among hosting users. Hence, a shared hosting plan is the most economical method of launching a website as expenditure of the main machine is contributed by many users.
You must have noticed various hosting plans offering you unlimited space, bandwidth, databases, addon domains and websites etc.
So are they really powerful enough to manage large amount of traffic, keep your websites up and running with no problems? It depends on the amount of traffic you receive and the amount of resources your websites use.
In this lesson you will learn about the points advertised on shared hosting plans and what they exactly mean and how customers get them wrong.
#1 Unlimited Websites doesn’t mean you can host many big websites without affecting the loading time. (as RAM is still limited)
Yes it means you can put unlimited number of websites but it doesn’t mean the up time and loading time of each website would not be affected.
If you starts to receive huge amount of traffic and a big database utilizing large amount of RAM and PHP memory, your websites will go slow.
Solution: Use some cache plugin, optimize and cleanup your database or migrate to VPS or dedicated server.
#2 Unlimited Space doesn’t means you can run huge PHP scripts without causing ERROR 500, Internal Server Errors
You can upload and host unlimited large files, photos, videos, PDFs, static HTML files and all files that doesn’t makes use of resources such as RAM, PHP memory, Apache etc.
But a shared hosting plan cannot host unlimited intelligent files like PHP scripts etc. They should be limited depending upon the amount of RAM and other allocated resources of your hosting plan.
Solution: If your website is making Internal Server Errors then cut PHP scripts and other intelligent files, use some cache plugin or migrate to VPS or Dedicated Server.
#3 Unlimited Bandwidth doesn’t mean you can host website with large database tables and heavy traffic without affecting the loading time of your website.
Yes, you have unlimited bandwidth but a shared hosting plan lacks in other important factors responsible for keeping up a website hitting heavy traffic, heavy database queries and heavy PHP scripts making use of allocated memory of your hosting plan.
Solution: Migrate to VPS or Dedicated Server or cut heavy database queries, block traffic, reduce the number of website you are running in your hosting plan.
#4 Unlimited Databases doesn’t mean the size of one database can be any number.
It only means that you can create unlimited number of MySQL databases but the size of one database is always limited (like 1GB or less) on all shared hosting plans.
Solution: In this case, there is only one option; migrate to VPS or Dedicated Server.
#5 Unlimited Domains doesn’t always mean you can host unlimited dynamic websites.
Dynamic websites makes use of database, you can run multiple websites on one database but remember size of a database is limited on all shared hosting plans.
If your hosting option is advertising unlimited domains or websites then look up how many databases it is offering you. If it is offering you 25 databases then it means you can host only 25 dynamic website (one on each DB) and unlimited static website (websites that doesn’t runs over database) unless you run multiple dynamic website on one database. Again, keep in mind database size is not unlimited here.
Solution: Migrate to VPS or Dedicated Server as that can only give you enough resources and real power.
Still a shared hosting plan may fit your needs depending upon the size of the websites hosted, amount of traffic you receive and the resources utilized. Shared hosting plans are cheaper and can be your preferred choice for smaller and unsuccessful websites.
Whereas a Dedicated Server is the ultimate option, where you won’t be needing to migrate, upgrade or worry about how much resources your websites are making use of.