Are you looking for the best dedicated server hosting providers? Has your site or application outgrown what shared, cloud and VPS hosting have to offer?
In this post, we’ve listed seven of the best hosting companies that offer at least one form of dedicated server hosting. We’ll go over the types of dedicated server hosting they offer (unmanaged, fully-managed and semi-managed) and pricing.
We’ll start with our top picks, then cover each web host in more detail.
The best dedicated server hosting providers
Before we compare each hosting provider, here’s a quick summary if you’re in a rush:
- Liquid Web – All-round best dedicated server hosting provider. Great support and great features. Backups included.
- DreamHost – Feature-rich dedicated server hosting with solid support. Monitoring and DDoS protection included.
- A2 Hosting – Best dedicated server hosting for developers. Tailor your plan to suit your needs and choose from managed, unmanaged or managed with root access.
- InMotion Hosting – Solid all-round dedicated server hosting. Allows you to customize server specs.
- HostWithLove – Slightly more expensive than others but offers plenty of value. Includes cPanel, CloudLinux, JetpackBackup, KernelCare and Softaculous Premium.
- HostGator – Great balance of affordability, features and performance.
- Bluehost – Good offering and affordable but you get more for your money with HostGator.
1. Liquid Web
Liquid Web is a multi-service host that supports such platforms as WordPress, Magento, Joomla and Drupal. It offers cloud hosting, VPS hosting, enterprise hosting and, of course, dedicated hosting.
It offers two primary dedicated hosting services: traditional dedicated hosting and a cloud hosting service powered by a traditional dedicated infrastructure. The latter allows you to combine the computing power of a dedicated server with the scalability of a cloud server.
Despite their different natures, these two dedicated hosting services share a similar set of features and customizability in the tiers they offer. Starting with security, you’re given DDoS protection for optimum uptime performance as well as CDN services through an integration with Cloudflare. This provides increased page speeds and additional DDoS protection.
You’re also protected by ServerSecure Advanced Security, which includes antivirus, routine scans, malware removal and hardened server configurations. Plus, all traditional dedicated servers come with up to 2TB of SATA storage to back up critical data.
You can also choose the specific control panel application you’d like to use: Interworx, Plesk or cPanel, allowing you to choose which content management systems and hosting tools you have access to.
Root-level access also helps to ensure you maintain complete control over your server and its most specific configuration settings.
As for hardware, you can choose between a single Intel CPU or dual CPUs that have a total of up to 32 cores (28 with cloud hosting). Up to 128GB of RAM is available as is up to 20GB of bandwidth.
In addition to the backup drive, you’re given multiple 240GB or 480GB SSDs for primary storage. A 1TB SATA drive is also included in your server in high-tier plans.
- Fully-managed, core-managed and unmanaged available.
- Ubuntu, Windows, CentOS and CloudLinux available.
- cPanel, Interworx and Plesk available as control panel applications.
- Server locations in Michigan (US Central), Arizona (US West) and Amsterdam (EU).
- 4-32 CPU cores with max speeds of 3.9 GHz.
- 16-128GB of RAM.
- 2 x 240GB SSD-4 x 480GB SSD storage (SSD capacity different for cloud hosting).
- 5-20TB of bandwidth.
- Dedicated IP address.
Plans for traditional hosting start at $199/month. Dedicated cloud hosting starts at $169/month. It should be noted that this price will likely increase as you configure your plan. For instance, control panels cost an additional $20/month.
DreamHost is a multi-service shared host that offers a variety of different hosting services for multiple platforms. Its dedicated servers are fully managed yet still offer a few pillars of flexibility for developers.
While you can’t choose your operating system, you are given root access so you have as much control over your server configuration as possible. You can also reboot or power cycle your entire server from DreamHost’s custom control panel whenever you need to. The latest versions of PHP are available, but you can also use Perl, Python and Ruby. Ruby Version Manager is also included.
The host offers 24/7 support and server monitoring. Server maintenance is also handled by them as is DDoS protection and other security measures.
You can configure a few specs for your server before you sign up for hosting, though there are some limitations. For instance, many plans use an HDD for primary storage by default. You can only upgrade to an SSD if you choose a 12-core CPU over the default 4-core. The same is true with choosing 32 and 64GB of RAM.
As it is, CPU cores, max RAM and storage drive type are the only specs you can configure. You cannot choose how much storage you receive. The amount is configured automatically based on the number of CPU cores you choose.
- Fully-managed with root access.
- Ubuntu operating system.
- Custom control panel.
- Servers located in the US.
- 4 or 12 CPU cores.
- 4-64GB of RAM.
- Up to 2TB of HDD storage. Up to 240GB of SSD storage.
- Unlimited bandwidth.
- Dedicated IP address.
DreamHost’s dedicated hosting plans start at $169/month or $1,788/year.
3. A2 Hosting
A2 Hosting is another multi-service host that mainly caters to WordPress sites, though it also offers support for platforms like Joomla and Drupal. Shared hosting, managed WordPress hosting and VPS hosting are available outside of dedicated hosting.
A2 Hosting has three dedicated hosting services: unmanaged, core and managed. The specs for each are more or less the same, but they differ in the features they offer.
Unmanaged is the best option for experienced developers who want to install scripts and custom applications that aren’t supported by the control panels offered in the core and managed hosting environments. However, cPanel is available for this service. You’ll get root access and the ability to choose which Linux operating system your server uses.
With core management, you’ll still get root access, but you’ll also receive limited managed server configuration and limited support from A2 Hosting’s tech team. cPanel is included for free, and you won’t be able to choose which operating system you use. You’ll also receive managed security and server maintenance.
In managed dedicated hosting, root access is completely removed. You’ll receive user-level management instead. Your server configuration is also fully maintained by A2 Hosting, and you’ll have complete access to the host’s support team.
A2 Hosting’s hardware is completely customizable. You have access to up to 12 CPU cores, 512GB of RAM, SSD and SATA storage, and up to 20TB of bandwidth.
- Unmanaged, core-managed and fully-managed services.
- CentOS, Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian, Slackware and Gentoo available.
- cPanel installed on managed servers and available as a premium add-on for unmanaged servers.
- Server locations all around the world.
- 2-12 CPU cores.
- 8-512GB of RAM.
- 256GB-8TB of storage. Max size for SSDs is 1TB. Max size for SATA drives is 4TB. All plans come with two drives and an additional drive that’s optional.
- 10-20TB of bandwidth.
- Dedicated IP address.
At base prices, unmanaged is the cheapest option at $1439.88/year or $149.99/month. However, you can configure cheaper prices by configuring different server setups for each type of dedicated hosting. For example, you can choose to use 2x128GB SSDs instead of the default 2x1TB SATA drives.
4. InMotion Hosting
InMotion Hosting is another multi-service host that offers hosting solutions for a variety of different platforms, namely WordPress. One of these services is dedicated hosting, which is broken down into two separate solutions: unmanaged and fully-managed.
The unmanaged dedicated hosting service is ideal for developers who want or need full control over their server. You’re given full root access and can choose which operating system to use. Servers are even equipped with remote Kernel Virtual Machine switches that allow you to install your own operating system.
Aside from a simplified control panel and a multi-layer defense system that protects you from DDoS attacks and other malicious traffic, you have complete control over the setup and maintenance of your server.
InMotion Hosting’s fully-managed service allows you to combine the power of dedicated hosting with the hassle-free server maintenance you’re used to. Root access is not available. cPanel is installed on the server instead as a way for you to configure it in a controlled manner.
Security patches and software updates are handled by InMotion Hosting. They’ll even handle automatic backups. You can also configure a bare bones server but include managed hosting services as an add-on.
The servers are powered by Intel CPUs with as many as 24 cores. Up to 384GB of RAM is available as is 8TB of SSD storage.
- Unmanaged and fully-managed servers available.
- Ubuntu, CentOS and Debian available. You can also install your own operating system.
- cPanel installed on managed servers.
- Servers located in the US.
- 4-24 CPU cores with speeds as high as 3.5GHz.
- 16-384GB of RAM.
- Up to 8TB of primary SSD storage with secondary storage available as well.
- Up to 25TB of bandwidth.
- Dedicated IP address.
InMotion Hosting’s plans start at $119/month or $1,199.88/year.
HostWithLove is a shared host that offers two fully-managed dedicated hosting services: semi-dedicated and traditional dedicated. In semi-dedicated hosting, you share a server with a small handful of other websites. This is compared to shared hosting servers, which are often shared by hundreds of websites.
HostWithLove’s semi-dedicated servers are much more powerful than its shared hosting servers yet less powerful than its traditional dedicated servers. The end result is a more powerful hosting solution than shared hosting at a rate that’s much cheaper than traditional dedicated hosting.
Storage maxes out at 120GB for semi-dedicated whereas it goes as high as 4TB for traditional dedicated. Bandwidth in semi-dedicated maxes out at 1TB while every traditional hosting plan has 10TB of bandwidth. Plus, semi-dedicated’s storage and CPU cores max out at 6GB and two respectively.
The other big difference is the way you purchase each service. Semi-dedicated hosting servers are offered as is. You can configure almost every part of the traditional dedicated server you purchase.
Everything else about the way the servers for each service are configured are more or the less the same. The servers use the CloudLinux operating system and cPanel. JetBackup is also used to back up your data.
HostWithLove handles updates and server maintenance. You also have full access to support.
- Only fully-managed available.
- Only CloudLinux available.
- cPanel installed on all servers.
- Servers located all around the world.
- 2-12 CPU cores.
- 2-64GB of RAM available.
- Up to 4TB of SSD storage available. Traditional dedicated servers may have up to 4TB of additional HDD storage.
- Up to 10TB of bandwidth.
- Dedicated IP address.
Semi-dedicated hosting plans start at $19.90/month or $203.04/year. Traditional dedicated hosting plans start at $249/month or $2838.60/year.
HostGator is mostly known for the shared hosting plans they offer for WordPress, but they actually offer a variety of different hosting services for numerous platforms. Among these is dedicated hosting, which it offers in semi-managed and fully-managed variants.
Apart from hardware maintenance and network monitoring, HostGator’s semi-managed dedicated service is fairly hands off. A control panel application is not installed. You’re also required to handle certain security patches and backups yourself.
While it’s certainly more work and maintenance for you to handle, it gives you or your developer the freedom to do whatever you please with your server. You’re even able to choose between three Linux-based operating systems and Windows.
You’re only able to choose between CentOS and Windows with the fully-managed service. Additional layers of security are also included through reactive server monitoring, security patches and off-site backups.
Control panels are available for this type of dedicated hosting, but the application you receive is dependent on the operating system you choose. CentOS uses cPanel while Windows uses Plesk.
All dedicated servers have full root access if you want more control over your own server’s configuration. Server-level DDoS protection is included as well as is an IP-based firewall.
HostGator’s servers use Intel CPUs, standard HDDs and SSDs. The specs for each plan are available as is, meaning you aren’t able to choose the amount of RAM or storage your server has for most plans. If you purchase the mid-tier plan, however, you can choose between a 2TB hard drive and a 512GB SSD.
- Unmanaged and semi-managed dedicated servers.
- CentOS, Ubuntu, Debian and Windows available as operating systems.
- cPanel (CentOS) and Plesk (Windows) control panels.
- Servers located in the US.
- 4-8 CPU cores.
- 8-30GB of RAM.
- Up to 2TB of HDD storage. Up to 1TB of SSD storage.
- Unmetered bandwidth.
- Dedicated IP address.
You can get started with HostGator’s dedicated server hosting plans for as little as $151.52/month or $1,249.92/year. You can also choose three-month, six-month, 24-month and 36-month plans.
Bluehost is one of the most prolific WordPress hosts available in the hosting industry, though they do support other CMSs as well. They offer shared hosting, managed WordPress hosting and VPS hosting.
When it comes to dedicated hosting, Bluehost only offers one type of service. It’s mostly unmanaged, though the host doesn’t offer the same level of flexibility as other unmanaged hosts do. Each of the three plans available to you is offered as is, meaning you can’t configure your specs to suit your needs or change the operating system your server uses.
However, you do have root access. You’re also free to manage Apache yourself. Additionally, while you’re not able to configure the amount of base storage your site uses during the checkout process, you can add additional storage at will without needing to consult tech support.
Bluehost handles server security and maintenance. Support is also expedited for dedicated hosting customers. You’re even entitled to a few additional features offered in Bluehost’s other hosting services, such as a free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt.
The specs Bluehost offers in its servers are fairly conservative. Only four CPU cores are available no matter which plan you choose, and you’re not told whether or not the storage drive your site is installed on is an SSD or standard HDD.
- Semi-managed hosting with root access.
- CentOS operating system.
- Custom cPanel installed as control panel.
- 4 CPU cores.
- 4-16GB of RAM.
- 500GB-1TB of storage.
- Up to 15TB of bandwidth.
- Dedicated IP address.
Pricing for Bluehost’s dedicated server hosting service starts at $149.99/month or $1,199.88/year. More discounts are available if you pay for more than one year upfront.
Dedicated server hosting FAQs
Dedicated hosting (sometimes referred to as dedicated server hosting) is a type of hosting package in which the customer leases the whole server and doesn’t have to share resources or control with anyone else. It’s often talked about in contrast to shared hosting, in which multiple web hosting clients share resources from the same server.
Dedicated web hosting plans are popular amongst larger businesses and high-traffic blogs that require greater resource allocation and full control over their own servers.
Dedicated hosting isn’t the right hosting solution for everyone. You’ll need to weigh up the pros and cons to figure out if it’s the right choice for your business.
With that in mind, here are some of the main pros:
- Greater performance. With dedicated servers, you don’t have to worry about sharing server resources with other users and can allocate more to your website. This often leads to greater website reliability, faster page loading speeds, and generally better performance.
- Improved SEO. One of the upshots of having better website performance is that it can help with SEO. Since Google rolled out the page experience update, website loading speeds and reliability have become increasingly important ranking factors. Therefore, upgrading to a dedicated hosting plan can help improve your performance and in doing so, boost your organic search traffic.
- Complete control. With dedicated hosting, you have full control and can configure your server for your specific requirements. You can completely customize performance and security features to meet your needs, install additional software, etc.
- Increased security. If you purchase dedicated hosting, no one will have access to your servers other than you and your team. As such, you don’t have to worry about other third-party users introducing malware or other security threats onto the server. This makes it much more secure than shared hosting plans.
Of course, there are some downsides too. Here are the main cons of dedicated hosting:
- It’s expensive. Dedicated hosting plans typically cost much more than shared hosting plans as you’re paying for the whole server and can’t split costs with other businesses. As such, it might not be the right choice for small businesses and cash-strapped startups.
- High maintenance requirements. Dedicated hosting plans aren’t as ‘hands-off’ as shared hosting plans, in which the service provider usually takes care of necessary server admin and management tasks for you. You’ll need to hire a server administrator or have a good amount of technical knowledge to take care of these technical tasks yourself. Alternatively, you can opt for a managed dedicated hosting plan instead, but this will come at a higher price.
Here are some key features to look for in a dedicated hosting provider:
- Managed vs unmanaged plans. Some hosting providers will offer both managed and unmanaged dedicated hosting packages. With unmanaged plans, you’re responsible for running your server and will have to take care of things like security and updates yourself. With managed plans, the service provider does this for you.
- Processor & memory. Web hosting providers typically offer different types of dedicated server configurations for different budgets. Plans that come with more powerful CPUs and a great amount of storage and bandwidth will usually cost more.
- Operating system. There are two main choices for your dedicated server operating system: Windows and Linux. It’s important to weigh up your options and choose the right OS for your business.
- Server location. It’s also important to think about where the hosting company’s data centers are located, as this can have a big impact on the speed of your dedicated server. Ideally, you’ll want to choose a web hosting provider with data centers that are geographically close to your website visitors for maximum performance.
- Uptime. Many dedicated hosting providers promise zero downtime, but few deliver on that promise. When you’re comparing your options, make sure you look at the hosting company’s uptime guarantee and uptime history. Try to choose a host that guarantees at least 99.9% uptime.
- Price. Of course, value for money matters too. Different hosting providers will offer different dedicated hosting packages to meet different budgets. Weigh up all your options and look for deals to make sure you get the best value for money possible.
Dedicated servers are ideal for high-traffic websites and mid-to-large companies that manage a lot of data. They don’t come cheap, but they offer unparalleled performance and control, which makes them a worthwhile investment if you have the budget.
If you’re running a small blog or business website that gets a limited amount of monthly traffic, and you don’t need complete flexibility and control over your own servers, you might be better off using a shared hosting provider instead.
If you don’t have the budget for a dedicated server but you’ve outgrown shared hosting, VPS is a great middle-ground between the two.
With VPS plans, you’ll still be sharing resources with other websites. However, unlike shared hosting, you’ll have your own ‘virtual private server’, which is a completely self-contained unit within the physical server.
This gives you more control, increased security, and often better performance, while still costing a fraction of the price of a dedicated server. You can find out more about the difference between VPS and dedicated hosting here.
If none of the above are a good fit, you might also want to look into cloud hosting. This is a relatively new type of hosting plan that is very flexible and scalable. It’s becoming an increasingly popular hosting choice and is expected to grow by over 18% per year.
The cost of dedicated hosting can vary substantially depending on the package you sign up for. You should expect to spend at least $50 at the bottom end of the market or as much as $300+ at the top end of the market.
The main thing impacting the price is usually server resources. This includes factors like:
- RAM. The amount of RAM included in your dedicated hosting plan will impact the price. It can be as little as 4 GB of RAM to 64GB of RAM, or more.
- Bandwidth. This tells you how much data your website can transfer to your website visitors. It’s typically measured in TB and can be as little as 5 TB to 100 TB/month. The best dedicated hosting plans will offer unmetered bandwidth with no hard caps.
- Storage. Data storage is another factor that will impact the price. The more data you need to store on your hosting account, the more you’ll need to spend.
Finding the best dedicated server hosting provider is tough as you’ll first need to decide which type of dedicated server hosting service you need.
Fully-managed is a fantastic option for site owners who need the power of a dedicated server but not the flexibility. This could be due to a lack of technical knowledge or a simple lack of time.
Semi-managed is great for the same reasons, except this type of hosting gives you or your web developer a little more flexibility as far as server configuration goes.
Unmanaged is the ideal choice for developers who need to use the operating systems and server configurations of their choosing as they build websites and applications from the ground up and optimize them.
Consider specs after that. Some hosts have low capacities for specs, which can be a problem if you or your client anticipate a need to sustain millions of concurrent users or run complex application setups.
You can most certainly consider budget, especially if you need to narrow your options down. However, because you’re most likely considering this type of hosting to power high-traffic, resource-hungry websites and applications, you’re better off basing your choices on servers that can sustain your specific needs.
Consider the needs of your business and finding the best dedicated server hosting provider will be easier.
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