What is the Difference between VPS, VDS and the Cloud

Many users often confuse VDS and VPS. It may seem as if these are two different concepts. In this article, we will explain what are VDS and VPS, and explore one more similar service – cloud infrastructure

What is the difference between VDS and VPS?

Since the names are different, those far enough from IT technologies, think that VDS and VPS are also different services. It is not exactly true. These abbreviations mean raespectively Virtual Dedicated Server and Virtual Private Server. Both mean the same thing – allocation of a part of physical hardware resources. The client gets a virtual machine (VM) isolated from the others.

They differ in the virtualization method. In the case of VPS, it is virtualization at the OS level, while VDS is hardware virtualization. However, for the end-user, it does not matter.

Working principle and features

The idea of VDS/VPS is that the provider divides the capacity of physical hardware into several parts and rent out each of them to customers. The client receives a full analog of a physical server with the necessary configuration. He can configure it, install applications, grant access, and perform other actions.

Although resources for multiple virtual machines are taken from the same physical server, the owners of neighboring VMs cannot access each other's data. However, this does not mean that there is no impact at all. If one or more clients use all of their allocated capacity, the overall performance can be negatively affected. In addition, some unfair providers, hoping that customers will not fully load their virtual servers, sell more resources than the hardware allows.

VDS/VPS vs. shared hosting

In shared hosting, several sites are on the same server and all use the same software. This option is more cost-effective, but there are some drawbacks.

The main one is that neighbors are not isolated from each other. This directly affects the performance. Moreover, shared hosting sites have the same IP address. In turn, VDS/VPS, as mentioned above, provides isolated machines.

The virtual dedicated server gives the owner access to admin rights for advanced configuration of the infrastructure and installation of the necessary software. Besides, clients can create any number of sites, domain zones, etc. The only limitation is VM resources.

VDS/VPS vs. a physical dedicated server

A dedicated server is a physical machine, which is either owned by a company or is rented. For example, a client can rent such a machine for a project.

Compared to VDS/VPS, physical machines are more expensive, especially if you have to buy equipment. With significant capital investment, you will get an infrastructure where the majority of the resources will be idle.

A virtual server is also easier to scale. To get more RAM and CPUs you simply change the tariff. With the common hardware, this is not that easy.

On the other hand, a physical server is completely dedicated to you and your processes, while with VDS/VPS you share the resources with other users. That is, in case some users overuse the capacity, others will not get enough.

What is the cloud and why is it better

Another solution is cloud technology. In many ways cloud server works similarly to VDS – this is also virtual resources for rent, but with significant exceptions.

While a VDS/VPS is just a conditional "piece of the pie", in the cloud client resources are not assigned to one particular physical server. A cloud provider uses a lot of equipment, the capacity of which is connected to a single pool, and from that pool, the necessary amount of resources is allocated to the client.

The advantage of cloud solutions is that "neighboring" VMs are not simply isolated from each other, they never affect the performance of others. The capacities are automatically allocated so that users always get the necessary amount of resources. 

In addition, clouds allow for scaling up or down depending on demand. To handle the increasing growth you can add the resources with just a few clicks. And you only pay for the resources consumed.

The only disadvantage compared to VDS/VPS is a higher service cost. For some simple and less demanding tasks, it might be worth using a dedicated server. However, for building a reliable infrastructure we recommend choosing the cloud. 
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