This section has an overview of web hosting types. For more detailed explanations, see the See also section of this page.
Dedicated / VPS hosting
With dedicated hosting, you have a dedicated server where you can store your website(s). You have remote access on the server, and you can install and update on it any software you want or need. This kind of hosting is suitable for big sites with lot of traffic (and income) because the costs are higher than, for example, shared hosting.
VPS or Virtual Private Server hosting is similar to dedicated hosting except that you have a section of a dedicated server partitioned for your use. You have most of the benefits of a dedicated server, but your resources and costs are less.
Shared hosting means that your website resides on a server with other websites. The total space on the server’s hard drive is divided into smaller amounts, and you get an amount of that disk space. So, for your website, a set amount of disk space and data transfer (bandwidth) will be allocated. Your website will also share the server’s hardware and software resources (the memory, the CPU, the database server, etc.), but rest assured, your information will remain confidential. No user/website can access the files of another user/website residing on the same server. This type of hosting is the cheapest of the three types presented, but it’s good enough for almost 95% of the people looking for a web host.
Collocated hosting, or co-location hosting, is similar to dedicated hosting with the difference that you actually own the server. So, besides software upgrades, you can buy hardware upgrades too (more memory, larger hard drives, etc.). The advantage is that the server stays in a protected environment, with optimal connections to the Internet, rather than staying in an office or at home.