When you are coming from using shared hosting services and get to a point where you need to migrate to a dedicated, or cloud hosting service, a lot of terminologies get thrown at you. One of which is the term Managed/Unmanaged Servers.
Most of the time you already know if you want to choose a Linux Server or a Windows Server but one thing you are also not often prepared for is what Linux Server distribution you want to opt for. And this is understandable especially when all you had to do when you were using shared hosting was just choose one of maybe three plans and you’re stuck with whatever configurations were available, you had no real idea all the technical jargon you see now.
There’s even a chance you have looked at some providers like Google Cloud or Amazon Web Services then see how cheap they look. You then wonder why you have not been using the platforms all your life. This brings you to the platform, you notice the free credit and you’re super excited but one thing you notice almost immediately is that you have no idea what to do with everything that has been set before you.
If this scenario is something you can relate with, by all means, hang around and we will explain to you why you need Managed Linux servers or the Managed Windows Server.
Before we go to the why let’s try to make things easier for you by providing some background information.
What is a Windows Server?
A Windows server is a server that runs the Windows Server OS which was first released in 2003. Before 2003, Windows-based Servers were running on Windows NT and Windows 200 Server.
Windows server OS does come with the PowerShell which is a Command Line Interface. You can also enable the Windows Shell which provides a Graphic User Interface for the OS.
Windows OS is the most popular Operating System for desktop computers but this is not the case with servers.
The main difference between the native Windows OS and the Windows Server OS is that Windows Server OS is made specifically for servers and as such includes server software.
Unlike Linux server distros which are free to install and use, Windows server OS does come with minimum pricing of $500 and can go as high as $6000+. This is why most hosting companies will sell Windows-based hosting packages at a more expensive rate than Linux based hosting packages.
What is a Linux Server?
Simply put, a Linux server is a server that runs on any of the available Linux distribution which happens to be open source and is the leading OS for servers, in fact, over 90% of the top 1 million web servers in the world operate on a Linux distribution.
Linux servers are usually installed with no graphic user interface and one of the first things you have to do is install the LAMP server-software combination. In case you need some clarification, LAMP refers to Linux, Apache, MariaDB/MySQL, and Perl/PHP/Python.
Linux distributions are often preferred by most people and organizations because it’s open-source and free. In return for this, a fair number of organizations do contribute to its continued development making it one of the most successful Open Source projects ever.
It is also important to note that Linux Server distributions are stronger and more reliable than their desktop counterparts because they are designed to handle the more demanding needs of business and web applications.
Linux Server vs Windows Server
Before we go ahead to talk about why you need a managed Linux or Windows Server, it’s fair to talk about some of the differences between the Linux Server distros and Windows Server OS.
- First things first, Linux Servers are free and open-source, while Windows Server OS is paid and Closed source.
- Linux based servers are more reliable and secure mostly because there are loads of people contributing to the Linux project to ensure this fact. Truth is well supported open source projects do have this advantage and other examples are Android OS and the Chromium Project which powers a lot of Internet Browser applications such as Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and Opera Browser.
- Microsoft products like the Microsoft SQL database engine can’t be directly installed on Linux servers. You will need a Windows emulator on your Linux to serve for this to work.
- Windows Servers actually do come with better support and is easier to implement while they also integrate well with all Microsoft software seamlessly.
- Linux server configuration can be modified without rebooting the system and they can generally handle much more than their Windows-based counterparts
While we can still go on and on comparing both server applications, it’s easier to stop here and move on to why you actually need a managed Linux or Windows Server.
Before we go ahead, let’s go ahead and explain what a managed server actually is. A managed server is a server plan or service that comes with usability support.
This support often includes installation of the OS, control panel, updates, security, speed, backup, and optimizations.
Why you need a Managed Linux Server
A managed Linux Server is great to get because it saves you a lot of options in getting the wrong configuration especially when you decide to consult with your web host support before getting one.
This is something that especially holds true with us at Spectrohost as you can always communicate with us before purchasing a plan and we would consult with you based on your needs and we will easily recommend options that you can run with, based on your budget.
A Managed Linux Server will often take the stress of installing, optimizing and securing your server off you, however, you need to always check with the level of support you get with each Managed Server Options
Why you need a Managed Windows Server
Similar to the Managed Linux option, you can have a service provider take the stress off you by taking care of installing, optimizing, and securing your server based on your requirements.
It’s easy to think that because windows servers are easy to install and setup, you wouldn’t need a managed service, however, there are loads of things to keep abreast of in the server technology world that would make operating a Managed infrastructure worth the time and even make the extra spend a wise business decision.
If you are wondering if your current hosting option is good enough for you or you need better performance than you are getting at the moment, you can always contact us to get a one-time free consultation service.