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Glossary of ASP Hosting Terms



Traffic or Data Transfer is the amount of bandwidth provided for your accounts. Every time a person accesses your Web site, they pull down html files, images, etc., in order to view your Web pages. Data transfer is the limit of how much data can be viewed from your site in a month. You would have to have a very large site that has a lot of visitors in order to have traffic measuring in GBs (gigabytes).

Disk Space or Storage Space is the amount of memory on a host's servers provided for your Web files. Your Web files can include html pages, images, audio and video files, log files, data from on-line forms, and any other data files. Most small sites that are under 10 pages in size won't ever exceed a single MB (megabytes) in size.

Server Uptime is one of the most critical aspects of web hosting. Uptime measures the amount of time the server has been online without interruption of service. Uptime can be interrupted by reboots, hardware and software upgrades, or downed lines and routers. Most web hosts will guarantee a percentage of time (i.e.: 99.5%) the server will be online each month. For example, if a hosting company says it is available 99.9% of the time, they are claiming that your web site will up all the time except for about 8 seconds each day. Over the course of a year, in this example, the hosting company is claiming that your site will only be unavailable (couldn't surf to it) for 48 hours. Should the server fail to perform at that level, you are often times entitled to a refund or credit of service for the month. (Individual guarantees vary from host to host. Be sure to check your web hosts Terms of Service for their individual uptime guarantee.)

Control Panels are online tools permitting easy site management and editing. Almost all hosting companies provide this option today. It is a very important feature to have. By having your own control panel, you can maintain basic information about your site, mail boxes, ODBC datasources, etc. without having to send emails to the hosting company or call them on the phone.

ODBC is a generic way for applications to speak to a database. If your website is dynamic and needs access to a database, ODBC acts as an interpreter between your application (such as an ASP application) and a database (like Microsoft Access). By using ODBC, a connection is created that will allow a web application that you create to read data from and insert data into a database that you've created.

Virtual Servers are web servers which share its resources with multiple users. It's another way of saying that multiple web sites share the resources of one server. Some hosting companies limit the number of users that may reside on each server, so look for this. The fewer users there are on a server, the better the server is likely to run. The plans on this site assume you will be using a virtual server, however, most, if not all, of the companies also offer dedicated and co-located servers as an option.

Multiple Domain Hosting means you may host more than one domain or subdomain with just one account. Some companies give you a specific number of domains you may host (such as 5) while some allow you to host as many domains and subdomains as you'd like within your space and bandwidth limits. So, if you have a domain called joe.com and another called mary.com, you could host both without paying extra.

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