Linux Vs. Windows Dedicated Hosting

One of the important decisions you would make for a dedicated server is the platform or operating system that your server would run on. Most dedicated server companies give you packaged OS solutions and/or the option to pick your own. Though the flexibility is appreciated, the problem is how would you select right OS?

Dedicated Server Hosting OS to Choose

The good thing is that your OS choices are generally limited to two: Unix and Windows. Windows everyone should be familiar with, but the Windows that we’re referring to is one that is created for a server environment, such as the Windows Server 2003 or the newer Windows Server 2008. Unix has been around for decades and is primarily designed as a server operating system. Even Unix has several flavors, such as Linux, Red Hat, Debian, Fedora, and others more.

Windows Dedicated Hosting

The choice between the two would be determined by your needs, technical ability, and budget. Once you have these pinned down, it will be easier to select the right OS for you. When you speak of need, what this consists of would be the scripts that you would be running on your site, reliability, and security. When it comes to scripts and programming, the kind you use would help determine your OS. For example, if you use VB and .NET on your sites, it would be better to get a Windows OS.

Linux/Unix Dedicated Hosting

When it comes to security and reliability, Unix is the better choice. It is less vulnerable to attacks, require less reboots, and can handle server load spikes better. Though Unix and Windows perform the same on normal loads, the flexibility to handle surges in demand is a critical advantage for the Unix servers.If you’re using PHP and MySQL, then a Unix-based OS would be better. This is because of compatibility and design. Some programs are made with an OS in mind, and these usually work better in the platform that they’re designed for.

Cheap Dedicated Hosting Plans Compared

Technical ability relates to ease of use. In this, Windows servers take the lead as their interfaces and design are meant for the techies and non-techies alike. Unix on the other hand, would require a bit of study and getting used to. There are Unix servers that still run on the command line interface, which would include a steep learning curve for the uninitiated. But once learned, Unix servers are easier to control and maintain compared to Windows OS.

The next thing to consider is cost. Windows require you to purchase a license, while Unix platforms are free. This is a great advantage for the Unix OS especially if you’re tight on the budget. In some occasions, that could be the tie-breaker there.

The choice of server OS is by no means an easy one to make. You have to consider several factors before making your choice. The choice is usually between a Unix OS, and a Windows OS. The general preference is for a Unix platform because of its advantages, but there are factors that make Windows the sounder choice. In the end, it would depend on your particular situation and site.

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