If you are searching for a hosting provider which offers services beyond shared hosting, you will likely come across the term unmanaged hosting. This term may sound odd. Shouldn’t all hosting be managed? Let’s explain what unmanaged hosting is.
Each host will interpret the term unmanaged hosting in their own way, but the following is a fair definition of what unmanaged hosting is:
Web hosting in which the provider manages the network and hardware of the server, but very little (if anything) else. Unmanaged hosting is a term typically used for VPS, Cloud and Dedicated platforms, sometimes referred to simply by the type of hosting (such as VPS as opposed to Managed VPS), or called user managed.
The unmanaged hosting environment is often chosen by someone who knows how to handle a server environment and requires resources higher than that of a standard shared hosting platform. Also, it will usually come with root access to the server to allow the customer the ability to configure the server the way they want, and install various software which may be unsuitable for shared hosting. For instance, someone wanting to run a resource heavy chat client would choose an unmanaged VPS or dedicated server to run their application, something usually prohibited by shared hosting terms of service policies.
Unmanaged hosting is usually less expensive than it’s opposite, managed hosting. This is because the cost of additional labor to handle configuration and troubleshooting, as well as provider installed software is not needed. However, the cost is only worth it if you know what you are doing. If you feel comfortable with an unmanaged platform, go for it. If not, you may want to check out managed hosting.