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What is Web Hosting? A Beginners Guide to Hosting

Think of a website as one huge folder that contains tons of subfolders, documents, and files. That information must live somewhere, and web hosting provides a home for website and all its files.

While it does seem like things on the internet just come out of nowhere, the truth is everything on the web is stored in a specific location. For logistical reasons, your computer isn’t the place for your web and all the files to live. It probably couldn’t handle the traffic, nor is it reliably always available. Instead, you’ll need a hosting service that will take care of housing your website for you.

Figuring out your hosting is one of the first and most important things you must do when launching a website. This guide will help you understand more about web hosting so that you can pick a service that is right for your website. 

Website Hosting Definition

What is website hosting? At its most basic form, website hosting provides storage for and access to a website. Your web host gives your website a place to live and lets visitors come and see it. Web hosts often do more than just hosting, but as the term suggests, hosting is their main bread and butter. 

You can technically host your website yourself, but it is extremely technical and beyond most beginners’ capabilities. Additionally, you’ll have to invest in expensive server technology to meet the needs of visitors as your traffic begins to grow. Even experienced web developers rely on web hosting.  

How Web Hosting Works

With web hosting, your site and all the files (HTML, images, video, and more) that make it up live on a server set up by a host. When people go to your site, they’re requesting to see those files from that server. The server then sends that information over to the visitor, and what they see is your website.

Comparing the internet to a big city is one way of understanding what hosting is. Think of all the homes and buildings in the city as separate websites and the land that they are on as host servers. The streets, naturally, would be the connection between users and the sites. Users will travel the streets to your website where your host will open the door and let them in to visit.

Difference Between Web Hosting and Domain Name Hosting

Oftentimes, people may confuse web hosting with domain name hosting. The two are related, and many companies offer both services, but they are quite different.

  • Web hosts provide a place for your website to live.
  • Domain hosts provide a way for users to easily find your website.

To go a bit deeper, domain hosts manage names of addresses. Your site’s actual address is a series of numbers known as Internet Protocol (IP). The internet would be a lot more cumbersome to navigate if we used IPs. Domain names are much easier to remember. Most of us don’t even remember phone numbers anymore.

Web hosts are where you keep your site — web domain hosts are who you turn to when registering a domain.

7 Types of Web Hosting

Learning about what web hosting is means understanding the different types of hosting. As someone new to running a website, it might be hard for you to see the differences between each type.

These are the several types of web hosting services you can find.

1. Shared Hosting

With a shared hosting service, your website and several others share the same server. Going back to our analogy, it’s like you’re renting a bed in a hostel. There is a ton of shared common space. This option is especially appealing to those just starting out on the web as it’s relatively cheap.

Of course, with a lower price, you can face some issues. Shared hosting is not ideal for sites that get a lot of traffic as that can bog things down for every other website or application on the server, including your own site. However, if you’re just starting out, and on a budget, shared hosting is all you’ll need to get your site up. You’re also likely to get helpful tools like email support and website builders.

2. Virtual Private Server

A virtual private server (VPS) is a step above shared hosting. You still share a server with other sites, only now you have virtual dividers that give you your own space on that server. This time it’s more like you have your own apartment in a building and no roommates to share your space. With a VPS you aren’t sharing RAM and CPU with other sites.

Virtual private servers are typically more expensive than shared hosting but should be able to handle a bit more traffic, and more customizations. VPS hosting is much more scalable than shared hosting, making it a better option for those who want to go bigger when the time is right. 

3. Dedicated Hosting

 Dedicated hosting gives your site its own server. This is like having a house all to yourself. You will not be sharing any of the space on the server with any other sites. All its resources are dedicated to you.

As you might expect, this is one of the most expensive website hosting options. It also requires a lot of technical know-how as you’ll be responsible for things like security and maintenance. On the other side of that coin, however, you get an extremely high level of customization, and you don’t have to worry about other sites’ traffic impacting your site’s performance. 

4. Cloud Hosting

There’s a good chance you’ve heard about the cloud. Everything these days seems to be on it, including websites.

Cloud hosting uses resources from several different services rather than just one dedicated server. This provides exceptionally reliable hosting as your site and its files live in multiple points. One server going down isn’t going to affect your site as it can pull resources from elsewhere.

Because resources are seemingly endless, cloud hosting is extremely scalable. That doesn’t mean you have to pay for all those resources all the time. With cloud hosting, you only need to pay for what you use. While this is a nice feature, it does make costs unpredictable. 

5. WordPress Hosting

WordPress hosting refers to hosting services specifically designed and optimized for WordPress websites. It can take the form of several of the other types of web hosting, such as shared, dedicated, VPS, and cloud hosting. 

Because of the optimizations, even shared WordPress hosting is fast and doesn’t quite suffer from slowness often associated with that hosting type.

Check out this guide to learn more about what managed WordPress hosting is.

6. Reseller Hosting

Reseller hosting is where a person or company buys hosting from one company and sells that space to others. You can look at this as subletting your house or apartment. This is often done by those who want to get into web hosting or even by web developers who want to offer hosting as part of their services.

7. Managed Hosting

Most website host services offer some form of managed hosting. This is where the hosting company takes care of a lot of the day-to-day management of the server and site. Managed hosting often comes with technical support, maintenance, software installation, updating, and more.

There are managed hosting options for all different types of sites, including managed WordPress hosting and fully managed WooCommerce site hosting.

What to Look for in a Web Hosting Service

Now that you have a better grasp on what web hosting is and what types of web hosting are available, you’re now ready to find one and get your site launched. As you look for web hosting services, consider these key factors.


When starting out, you probably don’t need too much storage, and even the most restrictive of shared hosting services will probably suffice. Still, if you have big growth plans, you might want to make sure you have the room to grow. Consider that even unlimited storage offered by many hosting services comes with some drawback


When you’re choosing your hosting service, make sure you understand the bandwidth limitations they may have. This is the amount of traffic that can visit your site. To start, you probably don’t need to worry about this, but as you gain a larger audience, bandwidth could quickly become an issue. Know what your options are once this happens. 


When your business is web-based, there’s really nothing worse than downtime. Every moment your site is not up adds up to potential revenue loss. Do a bit of research to get an idea of how reliable your potential web hosting service is. Find customer feedback, expert reviews, and stats when possible. 


Security is a big deal with everything internet-related these days. Web hosting services know this, and all of them make it a point to focus on security at least a little bit in their marketing materials. Make sure security is as important to your web host as it is to you. 


Like we said earlier, most website hosting companies offer managed hosting. Check with your potential hosts to learn just what they are offering to manage and for how much. You’ll want to see if they handle things like updates, backups, hardware maintenance, software setup, and more. 

Try Hosting With Hostdedi

Web hosting is a vital part of having a successful website. Choosing your host should not be done lightly. No matter what type of site you have, or the level of support you need, Hostdedi has a web hosting offering that’s right for you.

Learn more about Hostdedi’ fully managed hosting and find the package that fits your needs. Or, experience it for yourself with a free two-week trial.

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Is WordPress Secure? | Hostdedi

More than 40 percent of websites run on WordPress. But is WordPress secure?

Yes, WordPress is secure if you follow the best security practices. But, the popularity of WordPress makes it a frequent and easy target for hackers. In this guide on WordPress security, we’ll review the most common security vulnerabilities and what you can do to protect your WordPress website.

WordPress Security Vulnerabilities

WordPress isn’t a perfect platform. If you’re questioning whether WordPress is secure, you need to understand the system’s weaknesses.

Common WordPress security concerns include:

  • Weak Passwords. Using a weak password or the same password for multiple accounts or websites increases the chances of someone accessing your WordPress admin.

  • Outdated Core Software. If you’re not regularly updating your WordPress version, you could be missing vital security patches.

  • Undefined User Roles. The default role for creating a user gives them full admin access. Thus, limiting the number of users with admin access increases security.

  • Outdated Themes and Plugins. Like your WordPress core system, you need to keep any themes and plugins updated to have the latest security patches and features.

  • Unused Plugins. Plugins are the largest source of security issues. Having outdated or unused plugins on your WordPress site is like leaving the door to your house unlocked. It’s an unnecessary risk.

  • Incorrect File Permissions. Misconfigured file permissions settings give hackers easier access to make changes to your files. WordPress system files should have a 644 value for file permissions, while folders need 755 as their permission.

  • Insecure Web Hosting. Your web host should provide some security protections. Using a managed WordPress hosting service provides an extra security layer that incorporates some best practices, like file settings.

Types of WordPress Security Breaches

Hackers use common vulnerabilities, like the ones listed above, to try to access your site. But they use these weaknesses in different ways.

Common types of attacks on WordPress sites:

  • Brute Force Attacks. The brute force attack method targets the WordPress login page because it is the easiest way to access your website. A bot will use trial and error to enter different username and password combinations until it unlocks your site. Even if the attacker doesn’t manage to guess your login, the attack can easily overwhelm your server.

  • File Inclusion Exploits. These attacks exploit vulnerabilities in the PHP code running WordPress and any plugins. Attackers load and execute remote files, allowing them to modify important WordPress system files like the wp-config.php file.

  • SQL Injections. WordPress utilizes a MySQL database to operate. When attackers gain access to your database, they can create new admin login accounts or insert new data, such as links to spam.

  • Cross-Site Scripting. Attackers exploit vulnerabilities in WordPress logins to load JavaScript onto your site. The script can modify the way your site acts and even steal sensitive data from your website visitors.

  • Malware. Malicious software is a common problem for all websites. The most prevalent malware infections for WordPress are backdoors, drive-by downloads, pharma hacks, and malicious redirects.

How to Make Your WordPress Website More Secure

While WordPress is relatively secure, you still don’t want to leave your site vulnerable to attacks. Below is our advice for decreasing the chances of a successful attack.

Stay Current on Updates

As attackers find vulnerabilities in the WordPress system, plugins, or themes, developers become aware and publish security patches. If you’re not updating to the latest version of WordPress, you’re missing out on vital security patches. You’ll also need to update your plugins and themes.

Check Your Plugins

Most concerns are not with the WordPress platform itself, but instead with the plugins you add to your site, according to WPScan’s database of WordPress vulnerabilities. Plugins account for 89% of known vulnerabilities. In addition to keeping plugins updated, remove unused plugins. Also, only install plugins from a trusted source.

Safeguard Your Logins

Accessing your WordPress admin through your login page is the easiest way for an attacker to get into your site.

Decrease the chances of a login hack by:

  • Using strong passwords.

  • Setting up two-factor authentication, so you’ll need to get a code sent to your email or text message to complete your login.

  • Activating WP Brute Force Protection, a plugin that limits login attempts, so bots cannot make brute force attacks.

Use a Security Plugin

All Hostdedi managed WordPress hosting plans include iThemes Security Pro, the top plugin choice for protecting and securing your WordPress site. Managed hosting plans also include WordPress and plugin updates to ensure your site is safe.

Regularly Scan for Malware

Running a malware scan regularly ensures you can catch and fix an issue before it gets out of control. The iThemes Security Pro plugin includes a malware scanner to report on your website’s malware status.

So, is WordPress Secure?

WordPress is as secure as you make it. Keeping your system up-to-date and following basic security best practices, such as using strong passwords, can significantly reduce your security risks.

For the utmost protection, consider using Hostdedi Managed WordPress hosting. Security features and industry best practices come with every plan. From automatic updates to the iThemes Security Pro plugin, managed hosting plans are the best choice for business owners. Each plan also includes daily backups, so if hackers breach your site, you can restore a healthy version quickly.

WordPress is the most popular content management system, so WordPress sites will always be a frequent target of attackers. But, with the proper protection in place, WordPress can be a secure system for your website. Ready to learn more about Hostdedi’s managed hosting? Start your free trial today.

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