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What are the Main Differences Between a Dedicated Server and a Cloud Server?

Posted by QuoteColo on August 01, 2018 - Updated on July 30, 2018

Often, if you are running a startup, you have two hosting options that are readily available: dedicated servers or cloud servers. As more businesses are moving online, the number of solutions goes up all the time. This is a good thing, overall, but it can be complicated to someone who is choosing between the options.

We want to look at the two main options available to help you determine what might be best for your own organization. We will get into some of the more common differences below.

Level of Control

If you want to have complete control over your server, files, applications, and website – the right answer for you may be a dedicated server. This allows you total control over the server, such as what is installed and who can access it.

However, with a cloud server, you will have to let go of some amount of control. You will want to be sure that the cloud server you choose has the offerings you need and be capable of allowing the server provider to handle many things you might be used to doing on your own.

Cost Effectiveness

When you choose a dedicated server, you are most often billed on a monthly basis. You also traditionally will pay the same amount, even if you might use fewer resources and services over a particular period.

Cloud servers are often different in this regard. Most cloud servers will charge you on a resource-based hourly basis. That means that you are only paying for the resources that are used. Often the price of a cloud server, SQL storage, disk space, and bandwidth is a bit more expensive, but it can even out when considering the different billing types available.

Security & Safety

With a dedicated server, you will need to determine what measures you should take to keep your business information secure and untouched. This might mean monitoring resources or even upgrading your server to have the right abilities.

A cloud server takes that out of your hands. You should always be sure that you trust your provider, as they will primarily be in charge of handling firewalls, IT supports, encrypted solutions, and other security features.

Resource Scalability

With a cloud server, increasing or decreasing resources, such as RAM, storage, cores, and more, is simple and straightforward. Most cloud servers can scale CPU, RAM, storage and even offer technical resources on how to boost the performance of your applications.

On the other hand, with a dedicated server, specifications are more concrete. While yes, you can scale resources, it requires a lot of work and isn’t always even worth it.


As far as availability goes, dedicated servers always carry some risk of downtime or hardware failure. That’s because these servers don’t have additional nodes that share the work like a cloud server does.

In fact, with a cloud server, if a node does go down, other nodes will take over and do it entirely automatically. This gives you the assurance that you’ll have maximum network uptime and zero downtime for your applications and website.

On top of these two options, there is also the possibility of a hybrid cloud, which allows you the best of dedicated and cloud servers. Whatever you choose to use will likely depend upon what the goals of your business are and what your IT requirements may be now and in the future. By looking at these simple comparisons, you may be able to determine what option is best for your own startup or organization.

Categories: Cloud, Colocation

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