Preserving a powerful Web presence can become complex once a company’s hosting requirements progress beyond needing a dedicated server. Many business consumers turn to “managed services” as a solution. Managed services are target businesses that don’t have the time, capital or resources to invest in dedicated server administration.
Managed services can provide:
• Equipment procurement
• Provisioning and installation
• Network monitoring
• Management backed by Service Level Agreement
• End-to-end network management
• Maintenance support for locations around the world
A managed server becomes a dedicated server loaded with extended features and support. They come equipped with features expected from a dedicated provider, including choice of OS, routing equipment, network connectivity and complete administrative control.
One consideration is that instead of leaving the administrative tasks to the customer, managed server providers will typically handle those functions as well. Another attractive benefit is that the business consumer will be assigned a dedicated service representative who solely service their needs and manage only a handful of other accounts.
This exceptional support extends itself in the form of proprietary control panel technology that enables even the most inexperienced administrator to easily set up and maintain sites on a server. Utilizing an intuitive and user friendly point and click method rather than by typing complicated commands at a prompt line, the task is simple and effortless.
Additional supplementary features and services relative to managed hosting include:
• Application and database management
• High-availability services
• Load balancing
Only the most reputable Web hosting firms will offer managed Web hosting services, and can back up their services with performance guarantees and Service Level Agreements. Business consumers should not expect anything less.
Although unmanaged services give the customer complete remote server administration capability and freedom, they require a large amount of time and technical expertise, because the customer is ultimately responsible for installing & managing the server – not the Web host. For this reason, unmanaged servers are only recommended if individuals or companies that have extensive server administration resources, expertise, or significant time available to maintain the server.
Managed servers are more reliable and can be downgraded to an unmanaged service later on, once the business or individual acquires expertise in server administration. However, once a customer receives the personal attention and other benefits from a managed host, they may think twice about changing.