Web Hosting Jargon: Disk Space vs. Monthly Bandwidth

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There are a lot of important aspects to consider when choosing a web hosting service to use. Upon comparing the available packages and special offers, you will most likely come across a number of common terms and jargon. These terms are used to refer to aspects of the hosting service, some more important than others. Disk space and monthly bandwidth are two of the most important pieces of jargon to understand.

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Disk Space

Disk space simply refers to the amount of web hosting space you get when you buy a particular plan or service package. When a hosting plan says 2GB of disk space, it simply means you can store 2GB worth of files on the server.

To determine the right amount of disk space needed to host your website, you must first understand the kind of website you will be starting. A WordPress blog, for example, needs a minimum of 21MB for the web scripts alone. As you add more images and videos to your blog, you will need more space to store them.

Luckily, almost all hosting companies allow you to extend the disk space allocated to your account without having to upgrade the entire plan. You can expand your web hosting space as your site grows and more content are added to the site.

web hosting bandwidth

Monthly Bandwidth

On the other hand, monthly bandwidth – or simply bandwidth – refers to the allocated data transfer limit of your hosting account. Let’s say a page of your site is 1MB large. Having 1,000 visitors means the page is using 1GB of the allocated monthly bandwidth. The more web elements you add to a page, the larger it will be.

There are no definite rules to follow when it comes to determining the suitable amount of monthly bandwidth to have. You can make estimates based on the expected traffic and the size of your website before choosing the most suitable web hosting plan to use. Similar to disk space, there are also upgrade options available from top hosting companies.

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Unlimited Disk Space & Monthly Bandwidth

There are also hosting plans that offer unlimited or unmetered disk space and monthly bandwidth. These plans offer more flexibility compared to those with allocated disk space and bandwidth. However, there are a few things you need to consider before opting for an unlimited web hosting plan.

First of all, make sure you understand the terms and conditions of the hosting package carefully. Unlimited hosting plans usually come with more terms to follow. Certain files – including backups and archives – may not be allowed on the server; there are cases where backup files are deleted for breaking the terms and conditions.

There will also be a fair-usage policy attached to the unlimited web hosting plan, particularly when the service plan comes with unmetered bandwidth. Excessive downloads and video or audio streaming are among the things that are not allowed when you are using such plans.

Another thing to consider is the service cost itself. Unlimited web hosting packages such as those from HostPresto for example are usually more expensive then their limited counterparts. The web hosting companies that offer unlimited hosting based their pricing strategy on the average usage of their market segment, so you can either pay less for more or vice versa depending on your usage pattern.

With these three aspects properly considered, opting for an unlimited web hosting plan can actually be a good idea. You no longer have to worry about running out of bandwidth before the end of the month or not being able to post more pictures due to limited hosting space.

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Tips & Tricks

You can make the most out of the disk space and monthly bandwidth allocated by applying several simple tips. Using free cloud storage to store static files such as images and documents, for example, can help save on disk space and monthly bandwidth.

You should also consider using CDN and caching. A good CDN can help distribute bandwidth usage across multiple, well-placed international servers. Not only will you be able to save on monthly bandwidth, your website will also be equally fast and responsive when access from different parts of the world; content are fetched from the nearest CDN node instead of from the primary hosting server for a faster delivery.