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Windows vs. Linux Web Hosting

There are two main web hosting platforms - Windows and Linux. When comparing Windows web hosting to Linux web hosting you should familiarize yourself with the differences. This article discusses Windows vs. Linux web hosting, or ASP vs. PHP web hosting.

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If you want a home for your business on the Internet, it is usually a good idea to consider using a Web host. A Web host has a server that is connected to the Internet. This server can usually hold the information that makes up your Web site and make it easily retrievable by anyone surfing the World Wide Web. This can make things a little bit easier for you. However, when choosing a Web host, many people get hung up on the hosting platform used by the host. The two main types are Windows and Linux.

Windows Web hosting

Microsoft has creating a platform for Web hosting. It is totally compatible with the Windows operating system. In some cases, this may mean that your Web hosting on a Windows server will cost a little more. However, the price increase is usually negligible. Unless you plan to set up your own server, Windows is not that much more expensive. Web hosting companies have other ways of making up for the fact that they have to buy a Windows platform, while Linux is free.

If you have specific requirements for your Web page set up, Windows might be necessary. If you want to use ASP, MSSQL, Access, .NET, FrontPage or Windows Streaming Media to create your business Web site, Windows might be the way to go. This is because, while Linux offers some support for these programs, it is not always the best, since Microsoft still makes great use of proprietary systems.

It is worth noting, though, that even if you use a Windows operating system, things will work fine on a Linux Web hosting platform. Additionally, you don’t have to be running Windows in order to go through a Web host that uses a Windows platform. Normally, you access your Web site through a special control panel or FTP service (or both) that serves as an intermediary between your operating system and the Web hosting platform.

Linux Web hosting

Linux is a free, open source platform. Linux Web hosting often provides a little bit more flexibility, since there are “tech geeks” working on developing their own code working off the open source code available from Linux. Linux can support the commonly used methods of building a Web site, such as mySQL, POP3 and PHP, among others. It is also possible to build a Web site in Linux using some of the tools offered by Microsoft. However, you might fin that you have limited usability and support in these cases.

Linux is generally considered a more stable hosting platform. Microsoft is notorious for being hacked and issuing security patches. However, the Web hosting platform from Windows is a little more secure than its operating system. Still, though, many security minded businesses decide to go with Linux, due to its widespread reputation for stability. Linux also appears to be a little bit faster, due to the fact that Windows often adds a great many bells and whistles that slow it down and take up more space.

Linux is the most commonly used Web hosting platform, and even if you use Windows, there are usually no problems with Linux.

Windows vs. Linux Web hosting: Does it really matter?

In the end, it really probably doesn’t matter whether your Web host uses Windows or Linux as its platform. Indeed, what is really important is the competency offered by your Web host. If you have a good administrator and a good Web host, it really doesn’t make that much of a difference which Web hosting platform you use. They are mostly comparable. Linux might have a small edge, but if you like some of the specific features offered by Microsoft, then the Windows hosting platform is preferred.

By and large, though, most businesses won’t really notice a difference between the Web hosting platform used. Check different Web hosts for usability and service. Instead of getting hung up on which platform is used, consider total quality of the Web host, price and value.

Related Article: What is Web Hosting? >>

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