I want to upload my site public so people can use it. I am currently using a free PHP webhosting company that supports up to a certian amount.

When sites that say they offer unlimited upload, data, etc for like $10/month, is that all you need to run a big site? Or how do I host a big site, if it gets popular?

closed as off topic by John Gardeniers, Jim B, Warner, Ward, Massimo Apr 27 '10 at 7:40

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Apr 27 '10 at 1:30

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  • I think this is one for ServerFault. – David Z Apr 27 '10 at 0:57
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    David is right. I will add there's no such thing as unlimited upload and data. Some are more unlimited than others. – Matthew Flaschen Apr 27 '10 at 0:59

"Most websites only consume a very small amount of bandwidth and disk space. Web hosting companies that provide unlimited anything as a plan feature are banking on the fact that you won't use very much." -http://www.findmyhosting.com/the-truth-about-unlimited-bandwidth/

Choosing a webhost is situational. There are many solutions out there that fufill different needs. That being said, if you're testing the waters with this project and on a budget, start with a shared host @10$/mo with due dilegence on which company you choose. If your site does takeoff you will want to switch to a beefier solution like one of rackspace's offerings.

Stay away from buying servers and hosting sites yourself. If your site gets popular the last thing you want is downtime. Also you will be constantly dedicating time to your infrastructure instead of improving and marketing your product.

As TomTom said above there are situations where physical servers are the only fiancially reasonable solution. If you end up needing that much "power", consider yourself lucky! You have succeeded in the game of life and can afford to hire sysadmins to do your bidding.


If it gets really popular, you host it yourself. Buy servers and run something like a LAMP stack.

  • If it gets popular, get a VPS or go with cloud hosting. Only host it yourself if you have a compelling reason to become a sys admin. – gravyface Apr 27 '10 at 2:23
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    And considering this question originated on SO the desire to become a sys admin is probably unlikely. – John Gardeniers Apr 27 '10 at 5:53
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    Your definition of popular differs from the rest of the world. Slashdot, for example, IIRC, runs with 20 or so servers. Buy servers is the ONLY sensible financial solution then - together with space in a data center. VPS are too small, cloud hosting SUCKS financially. Only idiots use cloud hosting for 24/7 hosting - look at the prices per month for even a small virtual machine, compare them to a rented server. It HURTS - Clouds are EXPENSIVE. – TomTom Apr 27 '10 at 5:55

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