5 Key Differences between Cloud Servers and Hosted VPS

For most system users, cloud hosting seems identical to VPS hosting. This is, however, one of the cases where appearances are deceiving. Both cloud and VPS hosts have software environments and methods for access. While it is technically correct to call a cloud-hosted server a VPS, a virtual private server cannot be called a cloud server. To help you tell these two apart, here is a detailed review of the five key differences between cloud servers and hosted VPS.

1. Hardware environments

In a nutshell, a cloud server is more like an apartment in a high-rise building while VPS hosting is closer to a hotel room. This is because when you opt for a cloud server, you are essentially leasing a portion of a large computer network, which you can then customize to your needs. On the other hand, a VPS is on a dedicated server that hosts a number of virtual servers, each of which is configured to be used as a dedicated server. For example, a dedicated server with 128 GB of RAM and 160 TB HDD could be used to host 30 VPS, each with 4GB RAM and 5TB HDD. The remaining RAM and HDD resources are used to host the virtual machines.

2. Pricing

VPS servers typically have fixed monthly prices and a predetermined maximum capability. This makes VPS hosting ideal for applications whose usage is low, predictable and consistent. A private cloud is preferable when a high, irregular and unpredictable traffic application is being hosted. Private clouds offer economies of scale, higher levels of security and control for a fixed price. For a penny-pinching startup or web-based application whose traffic is highly variable and unpredictable, the pay per request pricing model used on public clouds is preferable.

3. Availability

Backup, disaster recovery and guaranteed up-times can vary according to the VPS host. Even so, high uptime guarantees usually come at premium prices. On the other hand, cloud servers have automated backups and switch-overs, offering better availability.

4. Allocation of resources

On a VPS, your host is a virtual environment built on top of a shared dedicated server. The common hardware shared by virtual hosts such as CPU’s could sometimes limit the availability of the paid resources. In comparison, cloud servers are virtual slices of networked computers, guaranteeing the allocation of resources.

5. Scalability

What happens if your VPS hosted game goes viral and the users skyrocket? In most cases, the server will crash and you will have to acquire new servers, copy files, and configure load balancing between the servers. On the other hand, if the game is cloud-hosted, scaling up could be automatic or you may have to authorize higher billing limits.

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