A while back, I posted about the WordPress database. It’s a must-read if you’re using WordPress, moving to WordPress or just want to know how the script works. While there are many, many outlets that shed a little light about hosting, domain names and installing blog scripts, but I’ve noticed that many of my peers feel more comfortable finding this information from someone within this group. I am more than happy to supply the information I know, and I hope it helps.
Today’s topic is web hosting:–the what, when, how, how much and why of it–and how any of that applies to us, as sex bloggers.
What is Web Hosting?
If you use the free version of Blogger or WordPress, then your host is technically Blogger or WordPress, respectively. These companies save your website content and data to their servers in a way that is accessible to any Joe Schmoe on the Internet.
How Does It Work With My Domain?
This depends. A lot of registrars now allow you to buy domains and hosting, which means you’re pretty much set right off the bat, without a lot of effort on your own part. I use a separate host and registrar, because that’s how it was done when I got into this scene. If you do that, then you’ll register an account with each company and enter the nameserver data, which you can find in the control panel of your host, into the DNS area in your registrar’s control panel. Either way, your domain will take up to 72 hours to propagate, that is, for the Internet indices to update with the new information about your domain name and which server it should point to.
Why Would I Need a Host As a sex bloggers, there’s pretty much only two reasons why you need a host:
- Your current host will no longer allow adult content
- You want more space or freedom to alter your website directly with HTML, PHP, CSS et cetera
What Do I Need to Know When Shopping for Web Hosting?
You need to know which hosts allow adult content. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. Terms of service may not adequately explain what content is permitted. If you’re unsure, you should absolutely call or email the company and ask. A host might allow you to get away with some sex toy reviews, erotic pictures or porn, but then your host might suddenly deactivate your account and offer no help when it comes to downloading all your content. That’s pretty much the best case scenario. If you don’t already have a backup, you could stand to lost all your hard work, which has already happened to a few sex bloggers and toy reviewers who used Blogger (others have just been forcibly placed behind the warning page).
You need to know what you’re going to do. For example, maybe you’ll just install WordPress and use that to do everything. That’s fine. All you really need, then, is a host with PHP and MySQL support, and that’s pretty much every host out there. In fact, many hosts make it super easier to install WordPress with installer suites like Fantastico; although, the basic installation is so easy I could do it in my sleep!
On the other hand, if you want to run several websites across multiple domains, with a variety of scripts, then you’ll need more–more domain support, more allowed databases, more bandwidth (data transfer) and more hosting space. You’ll see that all types of hosting, including shared, resellers, dedicated servers and virtual privates servers (VPS), offer tiered plans. Essentially, the hosting plans offer more features for more money, so if you need to add more domains, the best plan for you might cost more than the sex blogger who only wants to run a single domain. Similarly, if you plan to upload many photos or videos, you may need more space and bandwidth:
Adriana’s recommendation: Most sex bloggers need no more than 500-megabytes of space. In fact, it’s what I host most of my sites on, and I’m only using a little more than half of that. If your prospective host offers hosting plans catering specifically toward blogs or WordPress, there’s probably less space than “regular” plans, but you might not even notice.
Finally, hosts offer hosting on different server platforms. Again, for a blog, you probably don’t need support specifically for ASP or the .NET Framework. Most hosts default to Linux because it’s stable, and your host’s operating system has nothing to do with the operating system on your personal computers. I have always used Linux, and some users report that WordPress runs a bit more quickly on this OS.
Is There Anything Else You’d Like to Say About Hosting?
Yes. Let me impart you with a few tips:
- Many hosts offer discounts with promo codes that you can find on sites like RetailMeNot
- Some hosts offer automatic backup services, and will restore files should a server glitch, hatch or user error occur.
- If you’re using WordPress, you can install many nifty plug-ins to automatically email yourself a copy of the database or upload a copy to your host’s server for redundancy
- You can upload files to your host’s server through WordPress, the control panel (cPanel is so ubiquitous that its name has become synonymous for all hosting control panels, regardless of actual software name) or FTP. File transfer protocol programs are the way to go, because it’s ridiculously easy to upload, download or edit multiple files simultaneously. Adriana recommends Filezilla.
- If you start out with a smaller plan, your host will show your data and space usage, allowing you to determine if you should move up the tier of hosting plans.
Do you have any hosting-related questions that I haven’t covered? Sound off in the comments!