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Vijay Singh Khatri
Vijay Singh Khatri

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Cloud vs. Dedicated Server: Which Is Best For Your Business?

Cloud vs Dedicated Server
Today the demand for storing big data has increased along with the number of options to store it. Many companies find themselves in a tricky situation of deciding between the dedicated on-site server and cloud servers to store their critical data. So to select a perfect hosting server is an essential task for a far-reaching business. People look towards a website with zero page response time, and this can only be done if you go for a server that deals with the website request in time and efficiently.

Whether you are a small or big enterprise, many factors have to be considered when it comes to deciding the server option. Choosing between cloud or dedicated servers can shape your business in many aspects as both options have their advantages and disadvantages depending on the business requirement. But the questions remain the same which one is the better option for your small or growing enterprise.

We will discuss what a cloud server and a dedicated server are, their advantages and disadvantages, and how they differ.

What is a cloud server?

A cloud server is a virtual server that operates in a cloud computing environment that can be accessed remotely using a cloud computing platform. Cloud servers provide all required software so that they can work as an independent unit. These cloud servers are created on the dedicated server platform where they can connect to perform specific tasks. These functions can also be replicated to multiple servers to enhance resiliency and efficiency. The cloud server can also be maintained by a third-party using robust APIs.

There is no doubt that the cloud’s popularity can be the sole solution for storing and hosting data. This option is more cost-effective as it does not require an upfront investment. Cloud servers can be public or private cloud servers. If you are looking for an opportunity for a small-scale business, then you can leverage its enterprise-grade SaaS/PaaS solution at a cost-efficient solution.

How does a cloud server work?

Cloud server hosting is a virtual hosting platform that has its underlying hardware and software. These hardware and software are kept at a data-center and act as a host for many virtual servers. You can easily create a virtual server on-demand and can disintegrate if not required, thus providing flexibility. Elastic cloud platforms can manage multiple virtual servers and databases parallelly. Also, many web servers offer resources to the same virtual space within the same cloud. However, clients use virtual space and will pay for its services only without knowing where these resources are being provided.

Advantages of Cloud server

  • For cloud server hosting, you do not have a physical infrastructure at your disposal, and it saves you hardware installation cost.
  • It comes with pay-per-use, which means you have to pay for the required services only and eliminates the pay for idle time.
  • You can opt for services like servers, storage, software, or disk space as per your business demand, making cloud servers more flexible.
  • Using a cloud server enhances availability as you can access the services and resources from anywhere and anytime without impacting your productivity.
  • It is safe and efficient to store, backup, or restore your data from the cloud servers.
  • Cloud server ensures advanced automated redundancy.
  • With the resources distributed among multiple servers, it also ensures resiliency in case of one server failure.
  • The software runs within the trusted data centers ensuring safety by IT professionals.

Disadvantages of Cloud server

  • As the company stores its critical and personal data on the cloud, it is more prone to breach as companies do not have complete control over the security.
  • Companies tend to depend on the uptime of activities; amid downtime, you may lose plenty of time and clients.
  • As third-parties mostly manage cloud servers, their IT team handles all the issues and may slow technical support.
  • Cloud servers are internet reliant; if the internet goes down, you cannot access your data.
  • In the case of data recovery, it may take time due to third-party involvement.

Applications of a cloud server

  • Small business applications
  • Email servers and SaaS applications
  • E-commerce websites
  • Personal game servers

What is a dedicated server?

Unlike Cloud servers, dedicated servers are the physical servers that are dedicated to your websites only. All the services and resources are to be handled by the customers only. You do not have to worry about late IT support, full control over resources, and security. They are highly dedicated and better performing. The service providers maintain all the servers in-house for your business but come with a considerable expense. You can easily monitor and track your data and backups at any time without any third-party interference.

With dedicated servers, you can easily customize your hardware and software needs. You will also get a unique IP address for your dedicated server. You will be billed as per the contract, which makes it somehow more costly than the cloud servers. It may not be a good option for small or upcoming companies to start with from a budget perspective.

How does a dedicated server work?

Dedicated servers can have multiple processors and can have a single client on a physical server. All the hardware, software, and underlying infrastructure are dedicated to a single client on a contract basis. Clients can easily customize their needs for resources. A single client can have a single server or a cluster of the server built on virtual technology and points to a single virtual location.

Advantages of a dedicated server

  • The client will get full control over the resources, which can later be customized as per the business requirements.
  • As it avoids third-party interference, you can easily store your confidential and crucial data on these dedicated servers.
  • It can prove to be a cost-effective option if you are looking for a long-term contract as you do not have to rely on the uptime to work it effectively.
  • Since all the infrastructure is held in-house, you do not have to worry about connecting to your data source.
  • It provides easy customization and faster data access.
  • It allows you to use abundant and low-cost disk space.
  • The provided bandwidth and database is somehow cheaper than cloud-based servers.
  • It is highly scalable and gives you room to grow.
  • It gives you the flexibility to install any resources you need.

Disadvantages of a dedicated server

  • You have to assign space for storing massive data in-house.
  • It is a costly process as you have to spend more on the underlying hardware, software, and infrastructure.
  • If the requirement changes, it is not as easy to upgrade the system.
  • It will also require a dedicated IT team to be available anytime for crucial issues.
  • In this case, your company is more prone to data due to any disaster.

Applications of a dedicated server

  • Game server nodes
  • Large database hosting
  • Large business enterprises
  • Big data analytics

Which one to choose?

We have gone through what are cloud servers and dedicated servers along with their advantages and disadvantages. They have similarities and dissimilarities. But we can choose one which suits our business better. Let’s look at what grounds they are different, and in what cases they are a perfect fit for the small business.

  • Performance- well, dedicated servers are commonly preferred if you want fast data retrieval and processing. As we have the infrastructure in-house so the request will directly go to the servers at our disposal, making them faster to possess. But with cloud servers, the right will have to go through SAN to access and process the data, which may take time depending on the location of the data source.
  • Scaling business needs- cloud servers come with great flexibility when scaling up business needs in infrastructure, hardware, or software, which is tricky with dedicated servers.
  • Data migration- well, both cloud servers and dedicated servers shows easy data migration. But dedicated servers require planning to keep the data growth in mind.
  • Cost- well, dedicated servers will be more costly as you have installed the hardware at your disposal with all dedicated IT teams handling the issues. But with cloud servers, you do not have to worry about the underlying infra; all these will be governed by the third-party where you have to pay for the services used.


Any organization can use both the servers, but depending on the advantage it will bring to your organization, by understanding your business need and the future scalability of your data. After understanding the perspective, you can choose one of the servers to justify your growth and performance. The budget may be the constraint for a small scale, so the cloud server may be an excellent option to start looking into it.

Top comments (1)

yummikus profile image

If your hosting provider does not provide better services and limits you by the capacity of their servers, then you have to change your hosting provider. And go for dedicated servers because their power is disproportionately more than the virtual servers. I use dedicated hosting from Hostforweb. My team and I have a relatively large web application that consumes many resources.