Cloud computing is by no means a new technology. The availability of on-demand computing resources has gained popularity since the mid-2000s, with the idea dating back to the early 1990s. Web hosting is one of the industries where cloud computing revolutionized and it changed the whole industry landscape.
But does the average customer understand the cloud? Can they make it work in their favor?
We will review the main features of cloud hosting and how we can make the change easily.
What is cloud hosting?
In the traditional hosting type, you have one or more clients that use the resources of a single server to drive their online projects. Here’s the big one difference between shared and cloud services.
Hosting your website in the cloud means you have access to the resources of a global network of interconnected servers. This includes everything from disk space and bandwidth to CPU and RAM. Resources are available on demand, allowing you to overcome sudden traffic spikes and other things that typically cause service outages.
It is important to understand that cloud services are not an independent type of hosting, but rather an environment that any provider and customer can use. Shared servers, VPS solutions, dedicated platforms – They can be connected and operated in the cloud.
Advantages of cloud hosting services
The way cloud computing works opens up an ocean of opportunities for website owners. Here are a few:
Scalable resources – one of the great advantages of the cloud is to have all the necessary server resources at all times. Because you are not hosted on a single machine, you have virtually no limits on the amount of CPU power or operating memory you consume at any given time. The same thing happens when traffic decreases: resources quickly adjust to lower consumption.
Definitive availability – Service downtime is practically a thing of the past with cloud hosting. Using a wide network of computers means that even if the server crashes, there will always be another one that takes the load. Traditional hosting users should add a CDN solution to achieve these activity time numbers.
Flexible prices – Using as many resources as you need at any given time will help you keep track of hosting costs. Cloud services are paid for per use, so your monthly bill will depend heavily on your monthly consumption. There are days left when you pay an entire account even though you rarely use more than 10%.
Increased loading speed – As with the availability of your service, your upload speeds can also be positively affected when switching to the cloud. It’s a simple principle, really: when a visitor tries to open any of your web pages, they get the content from the server as close as possible. Residing in the cloud means it covers hundreds of locations around the world, always getting the best possible response times.
Backup and disaster recovery – Cloud servers are also a great option for backup and disaster recovery. Keeping all your files properly protected in an off-site location is a must for any webmaster, but with the help of the cloud you can ensure that no breach can cause your data to be lost. Recovering a backup only takes a few mouse clicks, but it can save you months of work.
Types of cloud services
The easiest way to classify cloud solutions is through their deployment method. Alternative types of clouds appear each year, but we can outline the following main categories:
Public cloud – In this type of configuration, you are using public Internet shares. External providers provide these resources, either for free or for an additional fee. This allows you to take advantage of CPU, RAM, bandwidth, or on-demand disk space. Utilities in the cloud are shared between multiple users, causing security issues. Google Cloud and AWS are among the most popular public cloud providers.
Private cloud – compared to public solutions, private cloud hosting offers the set of resources for the needs of the same company. Companies can choose to maintain their local settings or in third-party data centers. The environment is highly safe and adapts perfectly to commercial and even governmental use. VMWare software, Citrix Cloud and BMC are highly acclaimed private cloud service providers.
Hybrid cloud – Taking the best of both worlds, a hybrid cloud configuration allows webmasters to use both public and private cloud servers for the needs of their projects. Rackspace and Microsoft Azure are two of the best places to get such a setup.
Others – This category contains all the other combinations and new cloud technologies that emerged in recent years. Here we can include Community Cloud, Distributed Cloud, Multi-Cloud and others.
How to move from local hosting to the cloud?
Suppose you have made the decision that a cloud hosting solution would be the best choice for your website. If your current provider offers these services, the process would be as simple as asking your support team to upgrade you to the chosen cloud server.
But what if they don’t support these plans?
Don’t worry, as you can migrate to the cloud yourself. Just take a few simple steps:
Find a new host in the cloud
Start by determining the type of hosting plan you need before looking for the provider who can link your plan to the cloud. For example, vendors like it ScalaHosting specialize in premium cloud VPS services, while others, such as LiquidWeb, can fix you with dedicated cloud solutions when needed.
Back up your data
Be sure to create an archive of all your associated files and databases. In the case of a transition from cPanel to cPanel, the process is as simple as downloading the file files to your computer and uploading them to the control panel of the new host.
Recreate your email accounts
If you also want to transfer your email correspondence, you must first go to your new cloud hosting account and create the mailboxes you already have. You can also save all previous email data and move it to the new server to keep it intact.
Try like crazy
Before switching to the live site, you must first ensure that the migration was successful. You can check your pages by IP address, analyze your images, and test the links to avoid hosting issues.
Change the DNS of your domain
If everything seems to be working properly, it’s time to target your domain name to your new cloud solution. Log in with your domain registrar and search for the designated name servers. Change the DNS provided by your new provider when you register. There will be some spread of up to 24-48 hours for the changes to occur globally.
You see, moving your services to the cloud is much less complicated than you might expect. Not to mention that your hosting provider can make the process even easier by offering you migration care for free. A chat with the support team can give you a good idea of the scope of their services in the cloud and how they can help you with the transfer.