jpcuba's picture

Hi, :) thank you all for creating this great website!

So.. I'm being hired for the first time to create a website and I'm being asked how much to charge... So since it is family I was straigth forward domain name 15$ and hosting 50-70$ a year. Now I'm trying to understand if it's better to use amazon ec2 or hostgator to host a simple website. When I googled this people were complaining that their sites were being taken down when they hosted videos and their sites used too much cpu. I guess my question is why not post the video in youtube :P 


So whats the end point what are the advantages of ec2 over hostgator in a simple site that won't get more than 1000 views in a month.


Thanks again!

Jeremy Davis's picture

For small low traffic (non mission critical) sites shared hosting is by far the cheapest and easiest way to go.

The main advantage of using shared hosting is that they are really easy to learn and use. Also they are usually pretty cheap if you are only running one or 2 small websites. All the backend server maintenance is taken care of for you (although some may argue this is a disadvantage).

The main disadvantage is that you basically have no control of the server itself and some more complex configurations are just not possible (without the support of your host). But for simple stuff you should be fine. The lack of control can sometimes be an advantage too though as you will need to troubleshoot your own problems if something goes wrong.

VPS (Virtual Private Server) come in many shapes, sizes and technologies, AWS is but one. Many other VPS providers offer TKL as well. But considering how TKL links so nicely with it (via the Hub) it is a good option IMO. The beauty of a VPS is that you are in (almost) full control of your server. You can add, remove, reconfigure any software you like (within reason). You are not limited to certain things (eg some shared hosting plans limit you to a certain number of MySQL DBs) as long as the virtual hardware of you VPS can handle your desires (and if not - it's time to upgrade!)

Throttling will happen with any setup. Even AWS, especially if you choose a Micro instance - from my reading AWS micro instances have their CPUs aggressively throttled if they get too much usage. Some hosts are better than others on how they deal with this. It's a case of buying the right service for you and your usage (most service providers have tiered service levels with corresponding prices).

If you haven't used AWS before you could try the Free Tier (one free AWS Micro instance for a year). There are still a few other charges in there and you'll need to 'invite a friend' to use TKL Hub to get free access to the micro instances via the Hub. But that would be your cheapest option. But after your free year your costs would probably still be higher (than shared hosting).

davidfrost's picture

Quick one on this please. How do we know or what factors do we need to consider that we need a VPS already? 

Jeremy Davis's picture

It will depend on what you are trying to do and how you hope to do it...

Like I said above if you have simple requirements then shared hosting will probably be fine. If you have more complex (or heavier usage) requirements then a VPS will be better.

Another thing to consider is how much knowledge you have and how involved in the maintenece you want to get... (Again as I mentioned above) using shared hosting you will need very little tech knowledge. However if you have a VPS then you will need to manage it (or pay someone else to). Whilst TurnKey lower sthe bar for Linux VPS entry by including a number of user friendly tweaks and features, and by way of a friendly helpful community, they are still unmanaged servers.

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