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Web hosting services for developers are slowly becoming a niche of their own. Usually they are used by web agencies and design studios in order to test projects or to run applications under certain conditions. Developer web hosting in comparison with other packages often includes several price and resource tiers. In this article we review some of the top offerings for 2021.
Also Read The Beginner’s Guide to How to Host a Website
An Introduction to Developer Web Hosting
Developer web hosting is a fast growing niche that caters to experienced developers, web design specialists and digital agencies. Its main distinction is that it allows customers to tweak the purchased server environments and extended features. The prices reflect the packages and the support offered by the company.
Developer web hosting can be easily spotted even by inexperienced users — usually it will have a far greater support for programming languages and frameworks. This is done in order to enable the loading and execution of server-side scripts written in almost all popular languages. The extended code support and the option of choosing what version of programming language processors adds to the convenience.
An important factor is the speed optimization which is provided by the hosting provider. This is essential as most users who have purchased these plans will depend on fast hardware and connectivity to launch their projects. Developer web hosting when used by agencies might mean that web code and the hosted applications might be developed in real-time via collaborative tools.
Web development of such projects and resources need to be optimized for optimum security. The fact that in many cases test versions of complex applications will be uploaded and run means that there will be a lot of possibilities to launch hacking toolkits that will attempt to find a vulnerability and exploit it. Web hosts are expected to offer firewall protection, advanced anti-malware engines and DDoS protection.
The uploaded web sites will eventually grow and this means that the providers will need need to provide room to grow — scalability options. This ensures that as the content, database, features and other elements increase in size the web hosts will always scale accordingly.
Support is essential and important developer hosting plans. The users will need to ensure that they can reach the relevant experienced team at any time. This means that several support options will need to be provided — phone, chat messages, emails and etc.
1. HostGator Cloud Web Hosting Plans
HostGator offers cloud hosting plans which are very convenient for developers looking for a cheap and optimized package. The plans start at $4.95 and include the basics that are expected for small appliances to be set up. The company has ensured that the hosted sites are deployed on low-density servers which means that there will be a large speed benefit when compared with other companies. Usually cloud servers and networks are optimized to host a given number of sites so that they will meet the best cost and performance ratio suited for the hosting provider. HostGator has tweaked this formula in order to provide a much better performance by deliberately lowering the number of possible sites.
The deployed projects can be scaled easily as per the requirements and the needed resources. The machines which are used by the customers can be easily managed by a web-based dashboard. This enables the site owners to check on the performance and detailed statistics: usage trends, page loading speed, uptime, global reach and etc. Resource management is practically instant as the administrators can use these web tools. The hosting provider advertises its optimized caching configuration which will further optimize the loading speed of the served contents. There is an optional advanced security package.
When it comes to cloud hosting and especially plans that are suited for developers the hosting provider has integrated an automatic failover option — this means that if a hardware issue or fail happens the site will automatically load from a mirror copy located from a different server. As per the company policy the cloud hosting packages will distribute three independently mirrored copies of the sites.
Also Read How to Install WordPress on Hostgator
2. BlueHost VPS Web Hosting Plans
BlueHost offers a VPS (Virtual Private Server) hosting plan which is very popular with developers. The company is one of the top choices among many digital studios as they are well-known for providing quality services for a good price. Like other providers a 30-day money-back guarantee is offered along with 24/7 support. When a plan of this type is purchased the customers can rely on the optimized parameters the service offers. If the deployed applications require any additional resources additional services and even servers can be purchased.
Developer teams can use several different types of accounts. Specific credentials may be issued to site editors, administrators, database admins and etc. BlueHost has also created their own custom database management service: it allows the users to create, edit, delete and manage the values and tables.
What We Like.
Free domain for the first year.
Multi-Server Management available.
Advanced Access Controls available.
Optional Additional Services.
Some options require additional payment.
3. WebFaction Web Hosting Plans
WebFaction is one of the specialized web hosting providers that caters to many web developers and site owners. The provided servers are optimized with SSD drives, top-tier CPUs and have excellent network connectivity to the Internet. In order to facilitate a secure environment all pre-installed configurations will be setup with a hardened profile. All common tools and frameworks will be automatically updated to their latest stable versions.
The servers are managed and continuously monitored by the WebFaction staff to ensure that all installed services are updated and secured against potential hacking attacks. Full shell access is provided to the customers. Multiple server locations are provided so that the sites can be optimized to a given location. Web Faction is also one of the few companies that have produced an extensive User Guide manual which gives full details on practically all operations and services offered on their servers.
What We Like.
The service is built for developers from the ground up.
Operated by a very experienced company.
Pre-installed all frameworks and platforms used for web development.
Good documentation available.
No dedicated server option..
4. DigitalOcean Web Hosting Plans
DigitalOcean is one of the best options used by web developers. The plans offered are highly optimized for setting up appliances and web sites. Clusters, preset configurations and ready-made deployment quick access to install LAMP stacks, WordPress and other software. The customers can deploy their projects to a given data center, they are located across key locations around the world. First-class connectivity and performance is ensured so that the sites will load as fast as possible.
DigitalOcean developer web hosting plans provide enterprise and hardened network security features. This includes a specially configured cloud firewalls that when configured properly will provide an adequate defense against potential hacking attacks. When several servers are operated by the customers automatic load balancers will ensure that performance will not suffer as the tasks are optimized for each core and machine.
Advanced access via command-line interfaces, application APIs and in-depth monitoring are standard across the plan offerings. DigitalOcean allow the user accounts to enable collaborative development with all expected options – two-factor authentication, separate user registration and etc.
What We Like.
Trusted service used by top companies around the world.
Different types of environments where projects can be deployed.
Global Server Placement.
Custom service panels.
Powered off Droplets still require payment.
5. A2 Hosting
A2 Hosting provides several different offerings related to web project development. One of the preferred plans is their dedicated root server which can be ordered with specifications that should match the needs of the customers. A2 Hosting offers a good combination of a 100% Free HostGuard management which is combined with full Root Access. This means that the users will have total flexibility when configuring their rented infrastructure.
All servers offered by the company are turbo boosted providing up to 20x faster than ordinary configured web software. At any time customers can contact the support which comes bundled with the packages. The company takes pride in the way they have setup their infrastructure giving users the ability to seriously boost their SEO ranking when it comes into speed. This is made possible by creating an optimized environment in which the deployed project can work. Turbo boost is also integrated in the caching service which will further enhance the loading speed.
What We Like.
Three distinct types of VPS hosting available.
Managed security available.
Choice of operating systems and distributions.
Lowest plans do not have access to unlimited support.
Also Read How to Install WordPress on A2 Hosting
6. Liquid Web VPS Hosting
Liquid Web provides a very popular service plan suitable for developers with their Managed Virtual Private Servers. This combines both a speed and efficient server in a fully managed environment — the customers can have full root access and at the same time stay assured that their machines will be taken care of.
When it comes to developer hosting the company has integrated all required options and functionality which is to be expected from a secure production environment. This includes an advanced server configuration which includes a firewall, active DDoS attack protection and CloudFlare content delivery network integration.
A distinct feature of this plan is the fast hardware used by the company to power their machines. According to a verified speed test by Cloud Spectator the VPS Hosting plans offered by Liquid Web are faster than Amazon, Digital Ocean and Rackspace.
What We Like.
The ability to host an unlimited amount of sites.
Advanced security options in all plans.
100% Network and Power Uptime SLAs.
Easy Scalability options.
Optional addons require additional payment.
Also Read How to Install WordPress on LiquidWeb VPS Hosting
7. RackSpace Managed Hosting Services
RackSpace is among the most well-known hosting providers aiming to support enterprise and corporate businesses in setting up their projects. For this reason they are also well-known in agencies and developer studios as they are frequently used by their clients. The managed hosting is organized around the needs of the customer — offering both typical VPS options or even custom server packages.
RackSpace supports practically all complex applications that can be deployed to a given system — from complex ERP and complex database operations to small-scale web portals. One of the distinct advantages of the company is that a lot of information is available about the company, many developers are well acquainted with the offerings. As such RackSpace has developed a lot of options that cater to all types of developers. The obvious choice would be cloud hosting solutions. In here RackSpace has brought in an innovative service: multi-cloud deployment over providers such as RackSpace own network in combination with Amazon AWS Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft and other providers. This is especially suited for enterprise and large platforms.
What We Like.
SLA with 100% Network Uptime and 1-hour hardware replacement guarantees.
Custom quota plans.
100% Network and Power Uptime SLAs.
Hybrid Cloud hosting options.
Might be more expensive than competitors.
8. InMotion Hosting Agency Services
InMotion hosting has a special offering for Web Agencies which is very popular among web developer. This is an optimized hosting plan that offers a wide range of support and migration services. Over the years the company is continuously developing it and has a built a reputation as a trusted provider. Many developers choose to use InMotion Hosting due to their excellent migration feature and the ability to easily scale as the hosted project grows. When it comes to hosting sites and blogs the servers are optimized for all popular content management systems including WordPess, Drupal and Joomla. An optimized WordPress stack can be chosen in order to provide for the best possible experience when hosting such sites on the servers.
Here you can find extra tips:
How to create your first blog in proper way
How to install wordpress with PuTTy and FileZilla
Why you have to use shared hosting for your first website
FAQ's Web Hosting
What Is Web Hosting?
A web hosting service is a type of Internet service that allows individuals and organizations to upload their websites on the internet. For example, if you create a website or some kind of content that needs to be accessed by other internet users, you need to host it on the internet with the help of a specific service. This practice can be done by buying a plan.
There are different types of solutions like:
Shared Solution (Server shared between many users)
Dedicated (A dedicated server only for you)
VPS (Virtual Private Server)
Cloud (services that are provided to customers via multiple connected servers that comprise a cloud).
What Is Domain Name?
Domain Name is a unique identification mark that defines your site, in other words, it is the name of your website.
Every site has a different domain name which makes it recognizable in the networking space.
Examples for popular domain names:
and every other popular or unpopular site you have ever heard.
How Much Does Hosting Cost Per Year?
The cost of host services varies according to your needs. For every site, it's a different price and it depends on what host provider and plan you are going to choose. For example, if you choose the "StartUp" plan of the SiteGround shared solution, the price you are going to pay is around $100 per year. But if you have a bigger company and you need better performance the service can cost you more than $1250 per year for a normal plan of a Cloud solution.
Which is the Best Web Service for Starting a Website?
There are a lot of different host services available like Shared, VPS, Cloud, etc.
But which one is the best to start with. Judging from our experience the best service to start with is shared solution.
Even there are a lot of different opinions about how it is best to start your site with this type of service. Here you can find out why shared solution is the best for your first website.
How to Get a Domain Name and Hosting Service?
There are a lot of host providers that give a free domain name when you become their client. But how to get a domain and host service? We all know the free services are not the most reliable. If you want to start your website make sure you have Google-Friendly Domain Name.
How to Change/Migrate your Web Host Service?
If you think that the host service you use doesn't satisfy your needs, it's time to undertake a migration.
Migrating a site is a very vast topic and there can be thousands of reasons for moving from one company to another.
The easiest way to migrate without losing any information is to use a migration tool like Duplicator .
There are also a lot of different tools with which you can do this work. Here you can find the best migration tool for you.