I remember having to make a huge decision about my websites a few years ago. I was using a shared hosting account that supports multiple domain names to host a number of my blogs and websites.
The service was great, but the performance of a shared hosting service could no longer keep up with the traffic I was generating. Naturally, there were two options I could consider: a larger reseller hosting package or a virtual private server (VPS). I had no experience in running a server of my own at the time, so setting up a VPS hosting was a daunting task nonetheless. Fast forward a few years, and I now have several VPS hosting accounts running and supporting hundreds of WordPress blogs and websites without a glitch. If you are in the position I was in a few years ago, these next few tips will help you get started.
Reseller Hosting Vs VPS Hosting
Reseller hosting is great for hosting a large number of sites, but you still don’t have the full control offered by VPS hosting. The performance level of reseller hosting is also higher than the standard shared hosting services; again, you can squeeze more performance out of VPS hosting in most cases.
You can also go into several levels of VPS, such as managed/unmanaged/fully managed, like the options found here, which can be a godsend if you’d like more than your average WHM interface! So, which one should you go for? Based on my experience, VPS is still the better choice for several good reasons. First of all, there are managed VPS hosting services to choose from. Managed VPS allows you to have experienced server administrators set up and maintain the VPS while you focus on the more important matter: managing your websites.
They are more expensive than unmanaged VPS services, but you get so much more performance-wise. VPS is also much more scalable than reseller hosting. Similar to shared hosting, you can only upgrade a reseller hosting account so much before you hit the hosting company’s limits. With VPS, you can always add more processor cores, RAM and disk space at any point in time. You can even reduce the size of your VPS hosting to save money if you don’t need the extra resources. Lastly, even unmanaged VPS is not so difficult to manage now that there are a lot of tutorials, resources and pre-made server images to use.
This brings me to my next point….
EasyEngine and WordPress
One of the first things I did when researching VPS hosting was to figure out how to manage the server without having to learn so much about server administration. Since I will only be hosting WordPress-based websites, I focus more on control panels that work well with WordPress. CPanel was still the primary control panel I looked into.
I’m familiar with cPanel from using it on my shared hosting account, so managing the server should be a breeze with cPanel installed. In fact, a lot of managed VPS hosting services now come with cPanel pre-installed and already configured. One problem, though managed VPS and cPanel were still too expensive for me at the time. Then, I came across EasyEngine by rtCamp. EasyEngine is an engine that allows WordPress sites to be installed and run efficiently. It uses Nginx for caching, so performance is very good even when you are hosting hundreds of websites. It is also free and has a very good community of developers.
EasyEngine offers several advantages:
– You can update the entire EasyEngine with just one command
– There are hundreds of tutorials on how to set up EasyEngine for maximum performance and security
– EasyEngine offers premium support at an affordable price, which means you can always subscribe to the service whenever you need – help with advanced server configs
– It has everything you need to run fast and efficient WordPress websites
– EasyEngine is also very light since it doesn’t use a heavy graphical user interface or server routines
– It installs with just one command
The setup process took no more than 5 minutes. Remember, I wasn’t an experienced server administrator. After the initial setup is completed, I ran one command to set up my first WordPress website. I used my VPS hosting provider’s DNS panel to map everything, tested the domain and I was all set. Creating and migrating the rest of my websites were just as easy.
Learning by Doing
As I mentioned earlier, there are hundreds of tutorials surrounding the use of EasyEngine. I’ve been reading a lot on VPS and server management over the past couple of years. These are the things you need to do if you choose to use an unmanaged VPS hosting service; it’s a bit more work than using a shared hosting account, but it is definitely worth it.
The VPS + EasyEngine combination is also very flexible and scalable. If you want to know more about how to fine-tune the setup or how you can get the most out of your VPS hosting, be sure to stay tuned for more updates right here on this site.