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Cloud VS Local Server Hosting: Which is Best for your Data?

The cloud has helped businesses and innovation thrive over the last few years, and businesses seem to be reaping the benefits of the many advantages over traditional local servers. In today's digital world, businesses are increasingly outsourcing their IT infrastructures to cloud and hybrid server solutions. A key question is, which type of hosting solution is best for your business data and why? There are still some companies who prefer to host their data locally and have their own reasons for not jumping on the bandwagon. So, which is best for your business acumen and safest for your data?

The modern business faces a dizzying array of decisions on where to host their data and applications. A decade ago, companies were deciding between an in-house data center (local server) hosting or hiring outside hosting companies (cloud server). It was an easy choice: in-house was always cheapest. It's not so simple now.

With the growth in availability through cloud service providers (CSP), the cost of cloud storage is plummeting while local server hosting has become increasingly more expensive in comparison. For legacy systems that may not be able to be ported to a public cloud like Amazon Web Services or Microsoft Azure, moving to a private cloud can be prohibitively expensive as well. Most modern companies will want at least some of their data in the cloud for cost reasons alone.

At the same time, organizations are becoming even more risk-averse in changing their core systems and processes, making in-house local hosting less attractive from a risk standpoint as well. In short, there's an argument to be made for each type of hosting. Hosting data is one of the most important yet overlooked steps in any business venture. In this blog article, we look at the pros and cons of both cloud and local server hosting solutions and explore how each can be beneficial to your business. We will look into the differences between cloud server and local server hosting, covering aspects like security, cost, scalability and convenience.

Cloud Servers

Cloud server hosting offers scalability and flexibility, but it can be costly and may require specialized knowledge. Cloud servers come with an increasingly growing range of benefits, including industry-specific services, cost savings when you use less, and improved user experience, and the ability to build out your business capabilities as your needs grow or change.

Cloud server hosting is a great option for businesses that require scalable storage and computing power. It is also more cost-effective than local server hosting, especially for businesses that have high data storage requirements. However, cloud server hosting can be less reliable than local server hosting in terms of uptime and data security.
Let's explore the pros and cons of cloud server hosting.

Pros:

  • With cloud server hosting, you can easily scale up or down as your needs change, allowing you to quickly respond to changing market demands.
  • Cloud servers are often more secure than traditional servers, as they are protected by multiple layers of security.
  • Cloud servers also offer greater reliability, as they are not affected by local power outages or hardware failures.
  • Cloud servers can be cheaper than traditional servers, as you only pay for the resources that you use and don’t have to incur additional costs for maintenance or upgrades.

If you want to learn more, view our article on the benefits of cloud storage.

Cons:

  • Cloud servers can be less secure than local servers, as they are often stored in data centers with security protocols that you have no control over.
  • Cloud servers can be slower than local servers, as the data has to travel further to reach the user.
  • Cloud servers can be more expensive than local servers, as you may have to pay for additional features and services that you may not need.

For these reasons, cloud server hosting is often the preferred choice for businesses across the digital spectrum and has become increasingly popular in recent years due to its many benefits. One of the main advantages of cloud server hosting is scalability. With cloud hosting, you can easily scale up or down as your needs change, allowing you to quickly respond to changing market demands. Additionally, cloud servers are often more secure than traditional servers, as they are protected by multiple layers of security. Cloud servers also offer greater reliability, as they are not affected by local power outages or hardware failures. Finally, cloud servers can be cheaper than traditional servers, as you only pay for the resources that you use and don’t have to incur additional costs for maintenance or upgrades. For these reasons, cloud server hosting is often the preferred choice for businesses of all sizes.

cartoon graphic comparing cloud vs local server hosting


Local Servers

Local server hosting is still a popular choice for many businesses, particularly those that require high uptime and tight security for their data. Local servers are typically more expensive than cloud servers, as you need to factor in the cost of hardware, maintenance, and upgrades that may require training or new parts that could be incompatible. However, they offer greater control over your data and allow you to keep it stored on-site. In the traditional sense, it feels like this option is safer. You can see where your data is, and the a local server might not be subject to outages or slowdowns unless something happens onsite. For these reasons, local server hosting is often the best choice for businesses that require mission-critical data storage.

Pros:

  • Local servers provide more control over security and privacy.
  • Data is protected from external threats and disasters.
  • Lower costs associated with physical hosting.
  • Easier to customize and optimize for specific applications or needs.

Cons:

  • Smaller coverage area compared to cloud hosting.
  • Physical location creates potential access issues.
  • Prone to hardware malfunctions due to age or wear and tear.
  • Higher upfront costs for hardware, installation, and maintenance.

Local server hosting is typically more affordable than cloud server hosting, as businesses can save on the cost of running their own server. Additionally, local server hosting can also give businesses greater control over their IT infrastructure and allow them to customize their setup to meet their specific needs. This means that you have complete control over how secure your data is, who has access to your data, and all the security protocols you have put into place to help keep it safe. Additionally, local server hosting also provides faster speeds since the data doesn’t have to travel as far. This can be especially beneficial for businesses that rely on quick access to their data. Finally, local server hosting can be more cost-effective since you only have to pay for the hardware that you know you need rather than for a whole suite of services that you don't even know you need that are often offered by cloud-based providers. For these reasons, local server hosting can be a great option for businesses that need secure access to their data.

Cloud vs Local Server Hosting - Which is Better?

As we can see here, there are more than a few factors to consider when deciding whether to host your data in the cloud or on a local server. One of the main benefits of the local server is increased performance since the data is stored and accessed on the same machine. This can result in faster loading times and fewer errors. Local hosting is also more secure since it keeps your data from being exposed to the public internet. Additionally, local hosting can be cheaper than cloud hosting, since you don't have to pay for the extra storage and bandwidth. Finally, local hosting is more reliable, since there is no risk of a service outage due to a third-party provider. If you require high uptime and tight security for your data, then local server hosting is a better choice.

If you need scalable storage and computing power, then cloud server hosting is a great option. The cost of setting up and maintaining a cloud server requires the search for a provider and/or CSP and relying on the levels of access and security protocols set in place by the provider or CSP you choose. Security in the cloud has also grown a lot in recent years. As a well-known space in data security and compliance, the healthcare sector has seen massive growth in cloud-based solutions and data management. We wrote about some exciting new announcements last year here, and here. But as with all things in the digital space, there are still some risks to consider. Finally, you will need to decide whether the increased flexibility and scalability of the cloud are worth the trade-offs.

In conclusion, it is difficult to say which type of server hosting is best for a particular situation. Ultimately, the decision of whether to use cloud server hosting or local server hosting should be based on your specific needs and budget. If you need a lot of scalability and flexibility, then cloud server hosting may be the best option. If you need to save money and are comfortable managing your own servers, then local server hosting may be the way to go. The decision comes down to what is most important for your business, and the answer depends on your specific data storage requirements and IT infrastructure management services that work best for your business. At the end of the day, the decision of whether to use a cloud server or a local server will come down to a matter of preference in return on investment and growth potential. 

 

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Cloud Solutions Provider, Data Access, Cloud Services, Cloud Migration, Cloud Computing, Cloud Based Software, Local Software Development, On-Premise