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Windows NT/2000 Vs Unix Web Hosting: Which is best

By: 100 Plus Cheap Web Hosting



Shared or virtual hosting is normally offered in both Unix and Windows NT/ Windows 2000 operating system. The main difference between Unix and Windows web hosting is a difference in the operating system on which hosting server is operating. This difference in hosting platforms is transparent to the visitor of your site, but will have an impact on what applications and databases you can operate on your web site. So which is the best? The truth is it depends on what you are doing. Here are some things to consider about Windows and Unix hosting environments: 


Windows NT/ Windows 2000 

Windows NT and Windows 2000 servers are compatible with Microsoft applications and product suite, such as fully supported Microsoft FrontPage, Microsoft Access and MS SQL. Windows NT servers also offer advance-programming environments and features such as Active Server Pages (ASP), the ASP.NET framework, Visual Basic Scripts, MS Index Server, Macromedia's and Cold Fusion.  All these Windows 2000/NT based products are commercial product with more support options than Unix and Unix based products. 

Windows operating system require little or no experience in web development to get advanced features working very quickly because of better graphical user interface (GUI) Software such as Microsoft's FrontPage is specially developed for the webmaster to decrease the website development time and efforts. 

However, all these better and fancy user-friendly environment, powerful features, and good customer support, comes a cost much larger than similar features compatible with Unix operating system. The major drawback with Windows NT/2000 is stability and reliability. At Microsoft site every other week you can see a new announcement of another Microsoft security fix. To maintain continuous stability issue, windows NT/2000 servers require additional resource and reboot. . Each reboot and additional hardware brings the issue of uptime and better technical support from hosting company. 

A windows based server can support following features:

FrontPage, Flash, Shockwave, Real Audio/Video, Cgi Scripts, Perl, PHP SSH (Secure Telnet), Web Site Graphical Statistics, Web-Based Email System, MS SQL 2000, Visual Basic, MS Access, Windows Media, Miva/XML, Cold Fusion, ASP (active server pages) 

Select a Windows NT/2000 based plan


Unix/ Linux 

Unix/Linux based servers are nest suited for the small and average web hosting user, most Unix web hosting services offer a wide verity features at a very low-cost. Unix is an open source operating system, and most web developers are very familiar with it.  If you are new to web developing field and not familiar with Unix/Linux unlike windows it can be very difficult to use if you plan on adding more advanced functionality to your website. Many of the CGI, PERL and PHP scripts development on Unix, require advance knowledge of Unix commands in order for you to customize the scripts to match your website needs. 

Since Unix is an open source operating system, many web server applications and useful scripts are free and available on the Internet. Most of the Unix host support, Perl, JAVA, PHP, C, C++, Miva, Shell Access and other wide verity of feature like Telnet and SSH that provides lots of flexibility and freedom in managing file and directories. Due to these freely available software and scripts, the cost for hosting on Unix is much lower then using Windows NT or 2000. 

Currently, Unix servers have over 85% to 90% of the web hosting market share because Unix is far more stable than Windows in a shared-server, or multi-user environment. Unix operating system is a robust, time-tested, flexible platform for web server. Unix has proven to be a reliable server platform with a very secure environment. Unix is extremely vigorous and designed to handle heavy Web traffic and server load and can provide up to 99.9% uptime. 

Unix based server can support following features:

FrontPage, Flash, Shockwave, Real Audio/Video, Cgi Scripts, Perl, PHP, SSH (Secure Telnet), MySQL, Web-Based Control System, Anonymous FTP, Web Site Graphical Statistics, Web-Based Email System, Miva/XML, Cold Fusion.

Select a Unix based plan



So which is the best? Well it depends on what you need. If you want the tightest security and looking to create a simple website with little experience in Perl, PHP and other scripting language, a UNIX-based virtual server is recommended. However, you intend or need to use some application like e-commerce that requires Windows to run, such as MS Access or the MS SQL Server, and then Windows is the better choice.   



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