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Hosting Market Overview!


Web Hosting or Hosting is the process by which a third-party service provider furnishes a customer with data center facilities, network bandwidth, server equipment, system software, and storage capacity, with varying degrees of administrative and managed services to support an Internet presence or web based software application.  A business hires a Web hosting company to store a collection of Web Pages or a software application on a computing environment or “server” owned and maintained by the hosting company.  The hosting provider is responsible for all day-to-day operations, maintenance of the systems, and the network.  The customer is responsible for the Web site content and/or the software application.  The following diagram provides an overview of the hosting market:


Overview of the Hosting Market


  • Multiple Customer Web-sites Stored on a Single Server

  • Shared Network

  • Shared Disk Storage

  • Low Technical Support

  • Entry Level

  • Dedicated Server
  • Dedicated Network Bandwidth

  • Dedicated Disk Storage

  • Higher Technical Support / Administration

  • Pre-Packaged Managed Services

  • Advanced Level

  • Multiple Dedicated Servers

  • Dedicated Network & Storage

  • High-end Technical Support & Administration

  • High-end Managed Services

  • Customized Solutions & Services

  • Premium Level

  • Customer Owns Servers & Equipment
  • Data Center Rack & Space provided by Hosting Company
  • Bandwidth & Low Level Monitoring Provided by Hosting Company
  • Customer Responsible for Managing Servers & Providing Support Resources
Types of Hosting


Hosting services can be divided into four main categories:

  • Dedicated

  • Shared

  • Complex / Enterprise

  • Collocation


Dedicated Hosting


Dedicated hosting refers to the storage of a customer’s web site or web based application on a rented server (owned by the hosting provider) which is dedicated to that customer only.  In addition, the other components required to run the site or application, such as hardware, software, and network connectivity are also dedicated.  The hard disk generally has high capacity, and the technical support is higher-end and deeper than the level of support associated with shared hosting.  This solution does not require the customer to hire a staff to configure, administer, manage, and maintain the systems, network, and security.  However, the solution does require the customer to manage the web site content or web based application.



Shared Web Hosting


Shared hosting, also called virtual hosting, refers to the storage of multiple customer web sites on one server; hence the named “shared”.  When a customer opts for a shared solution, not only is the server shared, but also everything related to the server is shared, such as the hard disk, CPU, and network bandwidth.  Each server can house up to 300 web sites.  Technical support is generally light.  Shared hosting is primarily for low-cost, entry-level web sites, and small businesses. 



Complex / Enterprise Hosting

Complex or Enterprise hosting typically involves hosting multiple servers in an advanced custom configuration, such as N-Tier architectures which may include load balanced front-end web servers, database clusters, and multiple application servers.  Given the complexity of these types of systems, enterprise hosting providers offer a suite of managed hosting services to customers seeking to outsource these operational functions.  Enterprise managed hosting services include:


  • Security (Firewall, Intrusion Detection, and Incident Response)

  • Tape Backup (onsite and offsite tape rotation)

  • Storage Services (including SAN, NAS, and other advanced solutions)

  • Operating System Administration

  • Database Administration

  • Content Distribution

  • Server Load Balancing

  • Cluster Management

  • High Availability Services

  • Advanced Monitoring and Reporting

  • Public & Private Network Connectivity Solutions (Internet, VPN, Point to Point, Frame, Metro-Ethernet, etc.)

Complex hosting solutions are highly customized and require advanced levels of technical experience and competency in the support personnel of the hosting provider. 



Colocation refers to the provisioning of data center space, bandwidth, and basic system monitoring.  Data center space is typically rented based on racks (or racks) or square footage.  The customer owns and provides the equipment (servers, firewall, tape backup device, switch, etc.) which is located in racks or secure cage space.  The customer is responsible for all configuration, administration, management, and maintenance of the hardware and software specific to its application or system.  The colocation provider is responsible for supplying power, network bandwidth, physical security, data center space, and ping level server monitoring.


WebServe offers colocation services in Canada in our Class A data centers.

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