In the Web hosting business, a dedicated server refers to the rental and exclusive use of a computer that includes a Web server, related software, and connection to the Internet, housed in the Web hosting company's premises. A dedicated server is usually needed for a Web site (or set of related company sites) that may develop a considerable amount of traffic - for example, a site that must handle up to 35 million hits a day. The server can usually be configured and operated remotely from the client company. Web hosting companies claim that the use of a dedicated server on their premises saves router, Internet connection, security system, and network administration costs.
In renting a dedicated server, the client company may be required to use a specified computer system or may be offered a choice of several systems. Some host providers allow a client company to purchase and install its own computer server at the host provider's location, a service known as colocation.
Typically, a dedicated server is rented that provides a stated amount of memory, hard disk space, and bandwidth (here meaning the number of gigabytes of data that can be delivered each month). Some hosting companies allow the renter of a dedicated server to do virtual hosting, in turn renting services on the server to third parties for their Web sites. Domain name system, e-mail, and File Transfer Protocol (FTP) capabilities are typically included and some companies provide an easy-to-use control interface.
Back to: Glossary