What’s the difference between a cloud server and a dedicated server?

Are you thinking about your options when it comes to host your application or website? If you’re not sure which is the right fit, then keep reading.

Cloud Server
If you need to optimize IT performance without the huge costs in purchasing and managing a fully dedicated infrastructure, cloud server is a great option. Many small and mid-sized businesses, and those with variable demands and workloads, find that cloud server meets their needs effectively.

Cloud Server can provide levels of performance, security and control similar to those of a dedicated server. Instead of using physical hardware that’s solely dedicated to you, they reside on a shared virtual environment that’s managed by your cloud hosting provider. You benefit from the economies of scale of sharing hardware with other customers.

With cloud server, you only pay for the exact amount of server space used, and gain the benefit of infinite flexibility. You can scale up or down base on resources demand, and avoid paying for idle infrastructure costs when demand is low.

Dedicated Server
A dedicated server is a physical server that is purchased or rented entirely for your own business needs. Dedicated servers are great for large business, organizations that require exceptionally high levels of data security, or organizations that have predictable demand necessitating all of their servers running 24x7x365. Businesses using I/O-heavy applications such as databases and Big Data platforms also find significant value in bare metal dedicated hardware. Businesses using dedicated servers still need the IT capacity and expertise to manage the ongoing maintenance.

Cloud Server vs. Dedicated Server — Questions and Answers:
How quickly can I have resources online? With Cloud Server, you can have resources online within minutes. But with dedicated servers this can take considerably longer, even weeks in some circumstances.
Can I upgrade the RAM, disk space and CPU? Yes for both cloud and dedicated server. Cloud server only needs a few steps or uses an automated API. However, dedicated servers needs a manual process that would require a scheduled maintenance window.
Can I achieve High Availability? Yes for both. You can configure a HA environment quickly with multiple cloud servers and load balance within minutes. However, it takes hours or even days to build a HA environment within a dedicated infrastructure using multiple dedicated servers and a dedicated load balancer. Another key difference here is that building a HA environment in the cloud can cost up to 60% less.
Are tools available for auto-scaling, auto-provisioning and auto management? Yes, in a cloud environment these tools are readily available via the community-driven open development API. While tools are available in a dedicated environment, you may have to wait for vendor-driven development.
Can I easily run cost-effective segmentation of resources? Compartmentalizing your resources by function allows for easy scalability, management and resource segmentation. This can make cost effectively in the cloud. However, this type of compartmentalization is very expensive to achieve with dedicated hardware.
Can I get technical and monitoring support? Yes for both.
Can I address stringent security and compliance needs? If it is compulsory, it is the best choice for choosing dedicated server in your business. It is completely compliance with most regulations in a dedicated environment.
Can I manage my servers on-the-go using a mobile device? Yes, both iOS and Android operating systems are compatible with cloud server. This is not the case with dedicated hardware and management is a manual process.

And one question we hear a lot:
Can I run both cloud and dedicated resources in same environment?

Gone are the days of the one-size-fits-all approach to cloud solutions. That’s why we’re here to help. The cloud is a powerful technology, but it isn’t the complete answer for all business and workload. You need the ability to use the cloud for applications with the best choice, and run dedicated hardware where needs require.

Combining the power of dedicated hardware with the flexibility and agility of the cloud is something we’ve done since we launched our pioneering RackConnect hybrid technology. This combination creates an even more compelling proposition in terms of both price and performance.

The hybrid cloud is a real game changer, allowing you to combine public cloud with private cloud or dedicated hosting and leverage the best of what each has to offer to meet your needs. Use the public cloud for non-sensitive operations, the private cloud for business-critical operations, and incorporate any existing dedicated resources to achieve a highly flexible, agile and cost effective solution.

Want to Know More?

Selecting the right server and the right approach is a crucial decision for your business. The choice you make will depend on your business goals and objectives, as well as your immediate and long-term IT requirements. We’re here to help ensure you meet these needs and achieve the best possible solution. For more information on our cloud and dedicated hosting options and how we can help you build an architecture for your individual needs, contact a member of our team today.
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