Dedicated Servers

Difference between Managed and Unmanaged Dedicated Servers

Are you deciding between an unmanaged dedicated server ora managed one? Understanding the differences and what each option offers your business is crucial. Let’s explore the pros and cons to make an informed decision.

What are unmanaged dedicated servers?

Unmanaged dedicated servers are rented from a hosting company and managed solely by the customer. The hosting company sets up the server to the customer’s specifications, including CPU, RAM, disk, and network. They also install the customer’s chosen operating system (OS). However, it’s important to note that the customer may be responsible for any licensing fees associated with the OS. Additionally, while customers can choose their OS, hosting providers may have preferred systems for optimal performance.

Once the OS is installed, the hosting provider’s support ends, and the customer assumes full responsibility for server management. This includes configuration, software installation and updates, security, backup, and maintenance. Customers have root access and complete control but must also troubleshoot and resolve issues.

What are managed dedicated servers?

On the other hand, managed dedicated servers are fully managed by the hosting provider. The customer rents the entire physical server, but the provider handles setup and ongoing maintenance. Unlike unmanaged servers, managed server hosting providers have access control at administrator level. 

Managed hosting can vary in terms of the support provided. Basic managed hosting typically covers operating systems and standardized applications like Apache, PHP, and MySQL. The choice of operating systems may be limited, usually offering Windows and a few Linux-based options. Updates may be automated or left to the customer’s responsibility.

Providers at the higher end of managed hosting perform additional services such as overallmaintenance, reboots and backups, as well as software installations and upgrades. They may also offer full application support, including licensed applications. 

Generally, managed hosting providers will assist with troubleshooting issues that arise from human error within the standardized apps and OS. 

When should you choose unmanaged dedicated servers?

Unmanaged dedicated servers provide complete control and flexibility to the customer.

It is the ideal option for businesses or organizations with in-house IT teams or technical experts who can manage server tasksas the hosting provider does not typically provide technical support.

The benefits of unmanaged dedicated servers:

  • Greater control: With an unmanaged server, you have complete control and can configure it according to your needs, including installing the required software.
  • Cost-effective: Unmanaged servers are typically less expensive as you manage them yourself.
  • Customizable: Unmanaged servers allow customization, such as operating systems, control panels, and other software. This is crucial for companies offering unique products or services that require particular infrastructure environments.

When should you choose managed dedicated servers?

Managed dedicated servers are a better option for companies that need the high performance of dedicated servers but lack the resources or expertise to manage them in-house. It’s also suitable for those who prefer to allocate their resources to other areas of the business.

Unlike customizable unmanaged servers, managed servers offer less control. However, customers benefit from the convenience of complete management the hosting company provides, albeit at a higher cost.

It’s important to note that managed hosting companies tend to specialize in specific industries or areas of hosting. In contrast, unmanaged dedicated server hosting providers support various industries and use cases.

The benefits of managed dedicated servers:
  • Technical expertise: The hosting provider handles all technical aspects, allowing customers to focus on their business.
  • Support: Managed dedicated servers come with the backing of skilled technicians who can assist with any technical issues.
Choosing between managed & unmanaged dedicated server

When deciding between managed and unmanaged dedicated servers, consider key factors such as convenience, cost, control, and technical expertise. Managed options offer additional support at a higher price, while unmanaged servers require more effort but allow customization and cost savings.

The decision ultimately depends on the business’s specific requirements and technical expertise. If there are knowledge gaps, a managed option might be preferable.

Regardless of the choice, thoroughly review the services offered by hosting providers, as managed and unmanaged dedicated servers require different skill sets, and each provider has unique offerings.