July 4 2022

Managed Hosting

What is Managed Hosting and why prefer it to normal generic Hosting plans?

Managed Hosting
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When we talk about Managed Hosting or Managed Hosting we actually commit a rather gross error, assuming that we can actually choose for a managed hosting or an unmanaged hosting.

The reality of the facts, if seen for what it really is, says that there are no managed hosting and unmanaged hosting, but only hosting managed by qualified and specialized technical personnel and hosting managed by non-technical personnel, or simple amateurs.

The difference is substantial, both for the results that can be obtained, for the performances, the availability of the support, the backups and the security procedures and much more.

When you think of avoiding a managed hosting to save a few euros, in reality you save above all the supervision of qualified technical personnel who have not only professionalism but also a vast experience that is certainly greater than those who managed a few dozen hosting during the course of his life.

What is managed hosting?

Managed hosting also called Managed Hosting occurs and can be described when a hosting company manages the installation, administration, management and support of a server and / or application. Management services vary from host to host, but typically include operating system updates and patching, 24/7/365 support, network infrastructure and hardware management, basic security measures, including virus and spam protection , and monitoring and correcting anything that could affect server performance.

It is the job of the managed hosting company to ensure that their customers' websites and applications remain up and running at all times and these guarantees are typically backed up by a service level agreement that indicates how the managed hosting company will compensate the customer if anything it does not work.

In the same way that you work with contractors to scale more efficiently and effectively, you can outsource the management of your hosting to eliminate the need for in-house or expert hosting infrastructure.

We'll talk about why it's beneficial in a second, but first let's answer the obvious question: Why does your hosting need to be managed?

The trade-offs of unmanaged hosting

To really understand the benefits of managed hosting, it's helpful to first understand the alternative.

With unmanaged hosting, you rent server space owned by the hosting company, but it's largely a do-it-yourself experience. You get a server with the operating system of your choice, and the hosting company is responsible for operating the equipment and maintaining the physical environment where the servers are stored. You are responsible for administering the server remotely and this includes responsibility for software updates, patching, security, and monitoring.

Unmanaged hosting gone bad

The classic example of unmanaged hosting gone wrong is when you get a call in the middle of the night saying your servers are down and none of your global customers can access your website.

It is a terrible scenario, which can undermine the serenity of your work of your psyche and which certainly does not allow you to live calm and relaxed when you are on vacation, at sea or in the mountains and you always need to be connected to the internet.

But there are so too many other problems that can arise.

Being hampered by a slow loading site

You notice that conversions and sales drop significantly, only to realize that your site's bounce rates are skyrocketing due to slow loading times.

Becoming a victim of hacker attacks

You're caught off guard by a cyber exploit that would never have happened if you had patched your software faster and more consistently.

Crash and crash or downtime due to traffic spikes.

You launch a new product that gets a huge amount of traffic, but your site can't handle the traffic, so it crashes.

Struggle to find IT support budgets

Some companies choose to hire someone in-house specifically to manage their hosting to avoid some of these scenarios. The problem is that not only is it extremely difficult to find tech talent right now in the midst of a historical skills gap, it's also expensive.

The average salary for an IT manager is 40 euros a year. You'll pay a fraction of that if you choose to outsource to a managed hosting provider without having to make new hires.

The benefits of managed hosting

Choosing managed hosting allows you to avoid all those trade-offs and reap some great-value benefits:

Reduce the risk

In today's digital enterprise, reducing risk isn't the job of just one department. In many ways, it's everyone's responsibility in the organization, from the employee choosing not to open a suspicious email to the accountant making sure financial information is shared securely.

The fact is, people aren't always perfect, and effectively reducing exposure to online risks isn't an easy task. A high level of supervision and constant maintenance on the backend are required to ensure:

  • the operating system is up to date and the security patches have been completed,
  • cyber security threats are identified and resolved e
  • good traffic is able to flow while suspicious traffic is stopped at the gate.

Outsourcing this part of the job to a managed hosting provider is a great way to ensure it is done correctly and consistently.

Keep up with the speed of business

Business growth isn't always linear. Sometimes scaling happens quickly, or it can even come in waves with seasonal changes and market changes.

Your managed hosting provider will work with you to tailor your hosting resources as needed to ensure your IT fits your business. More importantly, as long as you maintain good communication with your managed hosting team, they can help you create a technology roadmap to support upcoming growth and product launches.

Stay up to date with technology

Moore's law means that technology is getting better, faster and more compact at an exponential rate. Not all companies will keep up with these changes, which means many will miss out on the efficiency and customer service benefits of emerging technologies like IoT and machine learning / AI.

Working with a good managed hosting provider means you have access to the latest technology, without having to invest a lot of capital in it. And as progress happens, your business will benefit, while your competitors struggle to catch up.

Stay compliant with the law

Companies handling sensitive or highly regulated data, such as information covered by HIPAA or PCI, GDPR, and the like have a number of compliance requirements that they must meet on an ongoing basis - requirements that take time and attention to meet. Your managed hosting provider will take care of these tasks for you, freeing up time and space to focus on other things.

Get affordable access to qualified experts

Remember that skill gap? Hosting companies are able to attract a strong concentration of talented people who enjoy the challenge of serving more customers. Your managed hosting provider will invest in keeping workers educated and updated on the latest IT threats and opportunities. And with every problem they solve for another customer, they're learning new and innovative ways to improve IT as well. (As the most useful humans at Hosting, we think this is quite important.)

Fully managed hosting

Fully Managed Hosting aka Full Managed is our top-of-the-line service for businesses that want a superior touch experience right from the start. It means that we work closely with you to help you choose the right hosting plan and that our experts design your infrastructure for optimal success based on your operations and business goals.

We'll also take care of the migration and onboarding assistance to limit any disruption to your business during setup. Once you're up and running, we provide around-the-clock management to ensure your infrastructure and applications are up-to-date, secure and up and running quickly for customers around the world.

As technology changes and your business grows, we will also proactively suggest ways we can improve your hosting implementation to keep up with the times.

Fully managed hosting includes:

  • 24/7/365 support
  • Fully managed network infrastructure
  • Fully managed hardware
  • Level 3 technicians on site 24/7/365
  • System-wide health monitoring and graphics
  • System-wide monitoring alerts and notifications
  • SLA with uptime over 99.98 %%
  • Full installation and support of the main software package
  • Core operating system updates and patches
  • Security improvements
  • Full web server support including Apache or NGINX or LiteSpeed ​​(Linux)
  • Proactive response and recovery of monitoring events
  • Virus and spam protection
  • Free external migrations
  • Full control panel support
  • Control panel updates and patches

Furthermore, we specialize in hosting the apps and platforms most used by companies.

Managed WordPress hosting

Managed WordPress Hosting

Anyone who runs a site on WordPress knows it's a great platform. WordPress offers a wide variety of templates, plugins, features and tools that allow small and large businesses to create professional and functional websites.

That's why the  33% of the Internet  works on WordPress.

But as you may have noticed if you've ever run a WordPress site, failing to update a compromised plugin can destroy your entire site. So he can add a plugin that is not optimized to work with your site.

And if you don't know the tricks for setting up secure WordPress hosting, you may also find yourself facing frequent hacking attempts. They occur every minute approximately 91.000 attacks on WordPress, targeting sites of all sizes.

Signing up for Managed WordPress significantly reduces all of these worries, as you know your site will be set up securely, monitored for suspicious activity, and updated regularly.

At Managed Server we also perform daily backups, include an image optimization plug-in to improve page speed, and give you full access to the server and development tools such as SSH, Git and WP-CLI. Additionally, we have optimized our platform for fast page loading speeds using the latest technologies: PHP7, PHP 8 SSL, NGINX and Varnish.

Managed WooCommerce hosting

Managed WooCommerce Hosting

Ecommerce is a booming industry that has changed the face of retail forever. And  22% of the top 1 million e-commerce sites  are based on WooCommerce.

It is a powerful platform that can be used to build and run ecommerce sites of all sizes. But using WooCommerce managed hosting turns it into a high octane sales engine.

Stores that use themanaged WooCommerce hosting Managed Servers are 2-10 times faster than those that don't. The trick is that while most hosts offer platforms that work great for cached WordPress sites, we understand that your online store cannot be cached the same way. So we have developed and created a platform specifically geared to help and improve the loading time of your store.

We've also spent a lot of time ensuring that our WooCommerce powered offering sets you up for online success from day one, with free migration, and server and application side optimization included, along with a double geographic backup system and backup and disaster policies. highly performing recovery.

Premium business email hosting

Email hosting

What company can operate without providing reliable email access to employees wherever they are?

Many businesses turn to Gmail for their business email needs because it has name recognition and checks most boxes for what businesses need. But with Managed Server you can get fully managed email hosting with the features you love (spam filter, phone and chat included, 10.000 messages per day) plus 5x more storage per mailbox, all for ⅕ the price. of Gmail.

We also offer long-term email archiving so you don't lose your valuable data. We currently don't offer email hosting as a one-time service, but if you use or plan to use Managed Server for other hosting services, our premium business email hosting is a breeze.

Managed hosting and public cloud (e.g. AWS, Azure, Google Cloud)

If you have the time and expertise to secure and manage your hosting 24/24, but don't want to invest in servers, public cloud might be a good option for you.

But make no mistake: unmanaged public cloud hosting is DIY hosting. You will be responsible for monitoring your traffic, configuring disaster recovery, performing backups, configuring the firewall, monitoring compliance, scaling and optimizing resources as you grow and, of course, maintaining updated and patched servers and software. In some cases, you will have a la carte options, but these come at a significant premium price. Public cloud is often not the advertised bargain price once all "optional" features are added.

Also, keep in mind that your data will be stored on a server shared with the data of other companies, making them more vulnerable to cyber attacks that could arrive through the networks of your "neighbors", as well as to the occasional degradation of performance due to them " noisy neighbors ”bogging down host server resources.

There are many ways to successfully host public cloud - they only require time and specialist knowledge. For the vast majority of businesses, managed cloud hosting is a more affordable and cost-effective choice that also leads to better security and performance. In business, time is money. Would you rather spend your precious time patching and updating servers or areas of your business that generate revenue?

Managed hosting pricing

Pig piggy bank

One of the most common reasons people don't consider managed hosting is that they assume it's expensive. On paper, it may seem more expensive than unmanaged hosting, but when you consider the hidden costs of leaving your infrastructure unmanaged, paying for management is a breeze.

General comparison

 

Managed hosting prices vary widely depending on the level of attention your infrastructure will receive and the level of experience offered by the hosting company.

As a rule, when very low cost managed web hosting is offered, it is a sign that the host is not using modern technology, not hiring experienced staff or both. For true fully managed web hosting, expect to pay 100-150 / month or more depending on the type of hosting (Cloud VPS is the exception - it can cost a lot less even from reputable providers).

Managed applications, such as WordPress or WooCommerce, are a different story, typically costing less than $ 50 a month. And for managed email, pay no more than $ 5 a month for a basic plan.

If you're comparing the cost of managed hosting to on-premise hosting, the savings are painfully obvious. Doing your own in-house hosting means paying for (and replacing / upgrading) servers, software, 24/24 technology management, and a lot more electricity. Your managed hosting cost will be exponentially lower.

What might be less obvious is how managed hosting can save you money compared to unmanaged hosting from something like AWS or Digital Ocean.

Hidden costs of unmanaged hosting

At first glance, you might think, “I can get unmanaged hosting for a few dollars a month. How can you say managed is a better deal?

It's important to look below the surface to account for the hidden costs of unmanaged hosting, including:

Data breaches and security

According to a study by the Ponemon Institute, promoted by IBM, the cost for each information stolen in Italy is 135 euros, a value that has almost doubled in the last decade. It takes 250 days to identify and contain a cyber threat. Attacks on the health sector are increasing.

Downtime

Using managed hosting significantly reduces the chance of website or application downtime occurring. The cost of IT downtime is a serious problem for the average business.

Productivity

Beyond the time spent patching or responding to downtime and breaches, it's important to consider how those activities will impact your team's productivity levels. Whenever one of your team members is interrupted, it can take around 23 minutes for them to refocus on their previous activity.

Patches and updates

Who manages the patches and updates? Take into account the time it will take them to maintain this responsibility, as well as the server restart time. Keep in mind that 5.000 to 6.000 new vulnerabilities emerge each year, or an average of 15 per day. And patching isn't just about the click of a button - your team will need to test and verify each patch to make sure the patch is valid and has been applied to all systems in the company without disrupting any functionality.

Conclusions and evaluations on Managed Hosting

Considering what we have dealt with so far, it is undisputed to affirm that Managed Hosting can always have advantages over unmanaged Hosting.

Unless you are faced with an amateur website where having it online or having it offline does not make a big difference, having a managed hosting management protects you from a whole series of eventualities that could prove to be fatal for your business. and for your economy.

In the same way as relying on insurance coverage to avoid negative effects, using managed hosting or managed hosting allows you to minimize the risk and move it from your responsibility to that of the hosting provider.

Do you have doubts? Not sure where to start? Contact us


We have all the answers to your questions to help you make the right choice.

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ManagedServer.it is the leading Italian provider of high performance hosting solutions. Our subscription model is affordable and predictable, so customers can access our reliable hosting technologies, dedicated servers and the cloud. ManagedServer.it also offers excellent support and consulting services on Hosting of the main Open Source CMS such as WordPress, WooCommerce, Drupal, Prestashop, Magento.

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