So, What Exactly is Managed Hosting?

What is Managed Hosting?

Many people have heard the term ‘managed hosting’ but don’t know exactly what it refers to and how it can benefit their business. The term is open to interpretation depending on you who talk to, since each service provider may offer a slightly different version of ‘managed hosting.’ Managed hosting is generally known to be an IT provisioning model in which a service provider leases associated hardware and dedicated servers to a single client. The equipment is stationed at the hosting provider’s facility and managed by the service provider. The provider owns the data centers, the network, servers and other devices and is responsible for deploying, maintaining and monitoring the entire system, while the customer still has full control of their operating systems and applications. Balancing the work load allows for increased levels of security and flexibility while also reducing cost of operation and increasing the effectiveness of your resource usage. Many businesses all around the world are beginning to find the peace of mind involved with having a hosting provider looking out for their systems 24/7/365.

Server Configuration & Maintenance

When beginning the process, a hosting provider will typically assign an experienced, specialized staff person who will make sure that the hosting solution configured is going to meet the customer’s needs and requirements. The hosting provider will also perform any necessary maintenance to keep the entire platform and system running smoothly.

Server Monitoring

A hosting provider will periodically scan the servers and search for anything out of the ordinary or any potential issues that could bring the whole system to its knees. If taken care of in time, the problems can be repaired before any major disruption is caused, keeping your business operating smoothly with decreased downtime.

Complete Back-Up & Storage

Any business’ worst nightmare is losing data that they have worked so hard to obtain. This can also put a dent in your budget, work time and perhaps most importantly, your customers’ trust in your company. For these reasons, it is crucial that all confidential and personal information is backed up and stored securely. If you have ever experienced this hardship, you know that you never want to experience it again. With redundancy and back-up in managed hosting, you don’t need to worry about lost data. A properly managed hosting provider will implement back-up and storage processes.

Increased Security

Some of the security features of managed hosting include virus scanning, spam filtering, firewall configuration and operating system updates as well as standard physical data center security measures. Basically, they will make sure your information is locked up tighter than a drum and kept secure for you inside a virtual vault.

Support 24/7/365

Perhaps the most attractive benefit of managed hosting is that if there is ever a problem, there is support on hand 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. So that no matter what the issue may be or when it occurs, you can have the peace of mind that by the time you notice a problem, your provider is already working on the resolution. Ideally, there is an actual human to talk to on the phone that will help you work through any issue you may be having.

Increased Flexibility

Using a managed hosting service is an extremely flexible solution. It’s not necessarily a “one size fits all” type of operation, but more of a unique molding of your business’ technological needs and requirements. The provider can work with the client to find something that works with their budget, but also achieve a solution that meets the demands of the business. Most importantly, the solution achieved is not stagnant, but responsive to the behavior and usage changes that occur over time. Providers can scale services and promptly react to ensure the platform continues to accomplish the tasks at hand.

Reduced Operating Costs

Having the hardware and experience needed for in-house managed hosting can be expensive (and often less secure). Managed hosting can be a great, cost effective IT solution with very predictable costs.  Given the huge unexpected costs of down-time for critical servers, the cost considerations of moving to managed hosting is really a no brainer.

Effective Resource Usage

If you have IT staff on your team, having an outsourced managed hosting solution can also be a good way to make sure they’re free to focus on more valuable IT tasks.