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It's been a few years since I last considered this, so I wonder if anything has changed.

What's available nowadays (communications wise) for somebody wanting to host a website at their own premises? Is a leased line still necessary? Or is it practical with some kind of DSL technology? Any ideas how much the connection would cost nowadays?

Thanks

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Its not really pracitical since managed hosting/virtual hosting and colocation are all less than the cost of SDSL or a leased line –  JamesRyan Oct 22 '09 at 10:30

5 Answers 5

ADSL is not suitable for hosting more than a very low traffic website. This is down to the way that ADSL has considerably lower upstream bandwidth than downstream. This works find for end users because they mostly download, where as a webserver would be mostly uploading. ADSL lines also have a higher latency than most hosting facilities have. You also have the problem that ADSL lines tend to be contented, so you might find that up to 50 other people are using the same 512kbit upstream that you are.

You may find that an SDSL line might work out better. These have the same upstream as downstream rates and tend to have a lower contention ratio as these are premium lines, but they come with a premium price. Possibly 5-10 times the cost of a business ADSL line.

These products also don't come with the same SLA that a leased line would have.

If it's a simple website for yourself, then you could probably use an ADSL line provided you have a static IP address and your supplier allows you. If you want to run a company website, then I would really consider a hosted solution. These companies provide more than just bandwidth. They provide reliable power supplies, reliable cooling and decent security.

The cost of installing a suitable line depends on what SLA you want, how much bandwidth you want, whether you want guaranteed, dedicated bandwidth, your location, the location of your nearest exchange, that suppliers you have available to you, how much competition they have between them and what country you live in.

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Damn, too slow. –  Dan Carley Oct 22 '09 at 10:28

In addition to the comments about speed and reliability..

You would probably be better off spending the money on a VPS. Which will be located in the best possible place for connectivity - a datacentre. Assurances about the speed and reliability of your connectivity will all be catered for. In addition to physical provisions like power, cooling and fire suppression. All at probably much less the cost of just bringing good connectivity to your home.

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I think the latest trends are moving toward optical fiber connections. If available, this would be preferred over any DSL connection (reliability, speed). Other than that, make sure your provider is reliable and "hosting friendly" (i.e. not blocking ports 25 or 80).

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It really depends what sort of traffic your expecting. I have quite succesfully hosted a number of sites for my own personal use, and for interacting with a group of friends at home on a standard DSL line. For that sort of use its fine, however once you start getting into the realm of other people using your sites you need to consider a number of things:

  • Speed of your link, in particular your upload speed, which is usually much lower than your download
  • Hardware reliability
  • ISP blocking or restricting certain ports
  • Dynamic IP's

Once you start looking at hosting sites that are more than just a utility for yourself, your start to reach the limits of what you can do with home DSL connections, your upload speed is usually pretty limited and will have issues handling more than a few connections. If you really do want to host at home your going to need to look for a connection with good upload speeds.

If your going to host sites for other people (and charge them) then all sort of factors come into play, what sort of reliability do you have. That old PIII you have in the corner may be quite capable of hosting your development sites, but would you really want to host other peoples data on it. If you do get some decent hardware, what about backups, cooling, fire suppression, power, these all become issues when your hosting other peoples data.

It comes down to the fact that if you going to be hosting other peoples data, its going to better for you, and them, and more economical if you want to do it properly) to host in a proper data centre. If you want to own your own hardware, great co-locate, if you don't, rent a server.

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Agreed with the above, for the most part. Bottom line: if it's just for you, or if nobody would mind if it went down, sure, do it. If it's for a job or anyone will have a serious problem if it goes down, send the work to a datacenter with an Ops

I'd discount DSL - it's plain archaic at this point. The two real options are cable and fiber. Fiber is fast and more or less constant speed. Cable is also fast, but can have speed issues (due to sharing of infrastructure), but is generally cheaper for a fast, static IP, business line.

Remember that the "business" connections from Cablevision, Comcast, Vierzon, etc. (cable and FiOS) are just repackaged residential connections - same installers, same tech support, no SLA.

You should probably take a look at: http://serverfault.com/questions/36457/server-hosting-from-your-house-200-to-300-per-month-range/ as a lot of this was discussed there, at great length...

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