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Demystifying Managed Hosting

Hosting can be a difficult thing to wrap your head around. For instance if you google hosting you will get a barrage of hosting solutions listing all kinds of shiny toys that are apparently included. But do you know what really applies to your needs?

But what is actually on offer?


SELF-MANAGED SHARED HOSTING

This is most likely the first product that you will come across.

There will be a variety of options that almost all list “services” they include such as the number of databases, FTP accounts, mailboxes or email address etc. All of this is just glitter, when in reality, packages are only based on one criteria: The amount of space or memory that your website and “glitter” will use on their server. 

For example – if a service listed is “unlimited emails” but the space is 5gb then in actual fact you do not have unlimited emails, you are limited to the amount of space provided; if your website uses 4gb you actually only have 1gb of email, not unlimited.

Self-hosted shared hosting is made for small businesses or personal blogs where the client either has the technical skills and time to be a webmaster, has a webmaster on staff or will employ one on an hourly bases. The kinds of skills required will most likely be advertised as “system administrator” or “webmaster.”

Hosting providers might talk about “unlimited traffic” which will inevitably have an asterisk attached to it. This is because traffic is not measured and the client’s web app is on a shared server. If a server has an issue, one of their system administrators will identify clients that are hogging the resources, make the website unavailable and then notify the client that they will need to be moved to a cloud or other form of dedicated or managed hosting. If you read the fine print, it will clearly state that the product is for small enterprises only.

Menge Media does not offer self-managed shared hosting. We have no intention of ever offering such a service and our business is not geared for this.


MANAGED HOSTING:

Managed hosting is where certain aspects of the system administration involved in operating a dedicated server is managed by the hosting provider.

This service is usually only offered as part of renting a whole dedicated server – It comes in different flavours such as cloud, VPS and dedicated stand-alone servers. The key here is that either the hardware, software or both are managed by the hosting provider.

Menge Media offers a variety of Managed Server Hosting solutions and we can craft one to the needs of the individual client. Whether you need dedicated servers for your online store, enterprise mail servers or cloud storage, we can tailor a competitive and hassle-free solution for you. We also have pre-packaged solutions as a starting point.

However, for smaller clients a dedicated server is not justifiable. The price is too high to rent an entire server, yet they need a solution that includes the benefits associated with managed hosting. For this reason we offer a best of both worlds solution called Website Managed Hosting


WEBSITE MANAGED HOSTING

Website Managed Hosting is a hassle free hosting solution. This means that we take away the need for you to have a system administrator or webmaster on staff to deal with security updates, backups and the general health of your website and the server it is hosted on.

It would be an error to compare Website Managed Hosting to self-hosted shared hosting. This is a grossly inadequate comparison. However, if you do, take the following into consideration:

Make concession in your analysis for an hour or two every month of system administration which will have to be included in a fair comparison (our rates are here or look for alternatives here). But even such a comparison will be inadequate.

Our Website Managed Hosting does not throw your website onto a server with hundreds of other clients fighting for resources. Our clients enjoy the kind of dedicated RAM access which large hosting companies only make available as an entry product to cloud or other dedicated server hosting solutions.

Our servers have multicore CPUs – even an entry level cloud server from Afrihost gives less access to CPU cores than our clients enjoy. The number of CPU cores is the most important factor for web apps to cope with high volumes of traffic.

So basically, to summarise and make it easier – for a fair comparison you will need to look at:

  • An entry level dedicated server, dependent on the RAM and CPU cores you require. On Afrihost this might be Bronze or Silver which you can find by clicking here.
  • Setup costs (A system administrator for a full day, possibly more)
  • Running cost (A system administrator for an hour or two every month to keep things running smoothly)
  • The interaction and organising of the above, which can be incredibly time consuming. 

You may ask yourself why it is so difficult to find exact comparisons online. Why can’t I find a similar product to Menge Media’s Managed Website Hosting solution? The reason for this is that this level of service is usually included within a bigger offering. It might form part of SEO management, a full advertising retainer or as mentioned above, a dedicated server. Frankly our own analysis found that it is best to only offer this to clients who commit to such services. The resources involved, both on physical hardware and our time spent delivering the service does not justify offering the service as a stand-alone. 

For this reason our Website Managed Hosting now has specific stringent criteria. It is a service intended specifically as a bonus for clients who use our other services.

Please take a look at our packaged services under the services menu and make sure to read the fine print. 


We found a few comparable packages elsewhere here, here and here. If the same product or service is offered we can possibly match or beat their price. 

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