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What OS Should You Host With?

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Web Hosting Geek

When it comes to web hosting, many people make a big deal about operating systems.  Does it really matter?  Some answer yes, others say no.  The truth is that the operating system a company uses to host your site plays a huge role in regard to flexibility, something that is needed to compensate for its growth.  While trying to narrow your options, be sure to follow the tips in this article.

Microsoft Windows

One platform you are sure to come across during your search is the popular Microsoft system, server editions of Windows NT, 2003 or 2008.   These systems offer the intuitive graphical user interface found on desktop versions of Windows.  This platform is easy for IT professionals to work with as a wide variety of commercial applications are available.  Many designers are attracted to Windows because of its integration with other Microsoft technologies such as ASP, FrontPage and the MS SQL database system.

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If Windows is not offered, it’s usually Linux.  Linux is a variation of the Unix system, a platform well known for its reliability and stability.  It is especially useful for common internet functions such as messaging, multimedia streaming and file serving.  As the Linux source code is freely available, this system tends to be the most cost effective solution in comparison to Windows.  When hosting your site on this platform, you are likely to receive other open-source technologies such as the MySQL database, the Apache server application and the PHP scripting language among others.  Linux is also compatible with a few Microsoft products such as FrontPage and MS SQL.  Many experienced developers prefer Linux because of the flexibility, security and authority it provides, able to offer root access depending on the hosting plan.

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Often compared to Linux, FreeBSD is a variant of BSD which is based on the original Unix system.  FreeBSD offers excellent flexibility, stability and performance to its users.  The system is proven and well designed with a wide variety of supporting applications available.  As an open-source solution, FreeBSD hosting tends be one of the most affordable options on the market.

Sun Solaris

Sun Solaris is one operating system you will not find offered by a shared host.  This platform is quite powerful and makes for some of the most robust web servers available.  With a proven track record, the system is primarily used by large Fortune 500 companies. Sun Solaris has been around for a considerable period of time and is supported by a large amount of programs and development tools.  Due to it’s high capacity and stability, this platform is ideal high traffic servers and mission-critical tasks.

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Colbat RaQ

RaQ is deployed by numerous VPS (Virtual Private Server) hosting providers.  VPS hosting with this platform is simple with a clean interface that offers root access and allows you to share administrative functions among your employees.  Cobalt RaQ makes a great option for someone new to server management.

How Do You Choose?

Your requirements will certainly become greater as the business grows.  Although many platforms will give you a good running start, not all of them are scalable.  The best move is to anticipate the explosion you’re looking for and find a system flexible enough to support it.


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