If you’re shopping out a virtual private server (VPS) provider then it may be worth going over what each of them have to offer in the year of 2017. There are a plethora of cloud services now and each provider has their own strong points. In this article I will cover what the behemoths have to offer (Amazon, Digital Ocean) but also the less known companies who are still establishing themselves.
Described as “… the world’s first professional hosting company with a fully libre hosting platform stack.” They take the FLOSS philosophy to the extreme – each and every component of their service is free and open source. From the green electricity that powers their hardware to the bootloader and all the way up, their service embodies the conscientious spirit. Based out of Germany, they provide not only cloud services but physical hardware as well (minimalist workstations and server racks). If you’re going to use Linux anyway, they might be worth checking out.
Performance wise, I defer to the blog post I linked to earlier for the comparison – the author already did a fantastic job of benchmarking the services. What you get for $20/month does not deviate too much from the norm:
- 2 GB Memory
- 1 Core Processor
- 40 GB SSD Disk
- 3 TB Transfer*
Pretty standard. Though their focus seems to be on the $5 VPS, which you can try for free for one month. I have not used Amazon Lightsail, but I do use AWS. My main complaint with Amazon is that you are limited to Ubuntu or Amazon Linux for the operating system. What about CentOS? Digital Ocean and Linode both have that image, you can be sure of that. The strong points of this service appear to be: many locations, ease and speed of deployment with application development in mind, and scalable pricing options.
You get the same specs as with Amazon, except 2 core CPU instead of 1. DO also offers pre-built images that come loaded with various tech stacks. I used DO for a while, and I can confirm that they have a wider range of system images, documentation, and support for app development. I planning on saying they are more pricey, but DO is fairly competitive with most other providers. They have a $5 per month instance now as well. The documentation and community goes a long way, so I would recommend DO to anyone who is just starting out.
Linode wins at raw performance per dollar, but may be less user friendly to those just starting out. Vikings is an interesting provider that takes the cake for working towards a free and open source world. Amazon stays just competitive enough while also providing a $5 option and their normal suite of development and deployment oriented solutions (RDS, Lambda,GameLift, I can’t even name them all here). Digital Ocean has the best documentation and community hands down – something invaluable to those who are just starting out.