If you want a website, you need two things: a domain name and (web) hosting: web space to set up your website. You place your website on that space with your hosting provider, and you make it accessible by linking it to your domain name. But what exactly is hosting, and how do you not get caught up in the maze of hosting options? We are happy to provide you with text and explanation.
Anyone who has a domain name or domain (eg domain name.be) does not yet have a website: you also need hosting for that.
You can see your website as a house: then your domain is your address, and your hosting is the piece of land on which you build your website house. Without a domain name, people wouldn’t be able to access your website, and without a website, your domain name would lead to an empty plot of land (and then your web browser would throw an error message, like error 404: page not found ).
When you want to save a file, such as a photo, on your computer, you need storage space for it: free space on your hard drive. A website is actually just such a file, which can contain photos, text, a webshop or all kinds of other data. Only you don’t store it locally: because it would be accessible to everyone, you store the files of your website on a hard drive of your hosting company.
Even if you want to e-mail with your own e-mail address, you need hosting. Your emails have to be stored somewhere.
You rent your hosting from your provider or your host . A provider offers you storage space on its powerful computers (or servers ), so that you can build a website on it.
In theory it is possible to host your own server for your website at home, but most people still choose a hosting company. This mainly has to do with the maintenance of such a server: hosting providers have an advantage of scale and can provide you with updated (and therefore more secure) infrastructure cheaper than if you set up a server yourself.
A host offers space on a server to place your website on. A server is really just a computer, but much more powerful , and without anyone working on a screen: it runs automatically, without a direct user. ‘Server’ means ‘service provider’: he keeps things running and answers questions.
A server is connected to a computer network. That network can be the Internet, but also a local area network ( Local Area Network or LAN , for example in a company). Other computers on the network are clients: computers (or programs) used by users like you and me. Under the influence of those users, clients request information from a server.
The computer you are reading this article with is a client. You use it to request information from the server where combell.com is located. So with your client you actually download this website from the server on your own computer.
Servers can be used as storage for all kinds of data, but here we focus on web servers, which host websites.
Your host ‘s servers are always on . It can happen that someone surfs to your website in the middle of the night. Then your server must of course be turned on to keep your website accessible. The availability of a website can be measured in uptime : an uptime of 99.9% means that your website remains accessible 99.9% of the time. That seems like a lot, but that still means a downtime of 0.1%, or 8 hours a year!
Very good hosting providers provide an uptime of 99.999%.
Another important function of your web host is to guarantee the security of your website.
Your web host will protect your website and data against hackers and other scum . Threats from malicious people are getting bigger and more complex every day, so your provider will be committed to updating the security of your servers very regularly. Large providers such as Combell can enjoy a economies of scale: if you can spread the costs of securing an entire data center full of servers over many different hosting packages, they are lower for everyone.
In addition to constant accessibility, there are a number of other responsibilities and costs involved. Just think of the energy bill: if you were to run a web server yourself, it would cost you a lot of money. Because providers have multiple servers in a data center, they can enjoy economies of scale, and pay less for energy. Which suits you right away.
Your host will ensure that you have control over your hosting package. With wekreate, this is done via a handy control panel. There you will get a complete overview of your settings and packages.
Hosting providers usually have a whole room full of servers: a data center. Thanks to such a collection of servers, a high uptime is ensured: when a server breaks down, another server automatically takes over its task, without you noticing it.
Your web hosting always comes in a package. This means that hosting consists of several parts.
These are the main components in such a hosting package: