Dedicated hosting service

A dedicated hosting service, dedicated server, or managed hosting service is a type of Internet hosting where the client leases an entire server not shared with anyone. This is more flexible than shared hosting, as organizations have full control over the server(s), including choice of operating system, hardware, etc. Server administration can usually be provided by the hosting company as an add-on service. In some cases a dedicated server can offer less overhead and a larger return on investment. Dedicated servers are most often housed in data centers, similar to colocation facilities, providing redundant power sources and HVAC systems. In contrast to colocation, a dedicated hosting service provides system administration and owns the server itself.


Operating system support

Availability, price and employee familiarity often determines what operating systems are offered on dedicated servers. FreeBSD, Linux, and variations thereof are often offered for free. Windows is often available for an additional fee to cover licensing costs.


Budget providers will often use a single budget upstream provider.

Higher quality providers will be multi-homed across multiple quality uplink providers, giving redundancy, in the event one goes down, and potentially improved routes to destinations.


Administrative maintenance of the operating system, often including upgrades, security patches, and sometimes even daemon updates are included. Differing levels of management may include adding users, domains, daemon configuration, or even custom programming.


Many providers do not allow IRC (eggdrops, clients or daemons). This is due to rogue IRC users triggering DDoS attacks against the provider, which may overwhelm their networks, lowering service quality for all customers.

Adult content is disallowed by many providers as it may either be of questionable legality or consume large amounts of bandwidth.

Spam is usually prohibited by the provider's Acceptable Use Policy.

Extra features

Useful features for dedicated servers may be included, or cost additional monthly fees:

  • Serial Console or KVM/IP - this is used to gain access to a server if for some reason the user is unable to get in via normal means (e.g. ssh), and permits a server to be recovered from boot-time configuration faults, such as filesystem recovery.
  • Automated restore of OS - an automated system can be used to restore the server to its original configuration.
  • Remote Backup Space - ssh/FTP space to backup data stored on the server.