How does Web Hosting Work?

Web hosting ensures that users can enter a domain name in their browser and have the appropriate website content displayed. To do this, the website creator must first register a domain and then store content on the server of a web hosting provider. The domain name system (DNS) is used to link the domain name and the server. For this purpose, the information under which IP address a certain domain can be found is stored on name servers. If a user now calls up a URL, the domain name is resolved into an IP address and the corresponding address is searched for on the Internet. If successful, the website is displayed to the user.

Since hardware failures can occur, many hosting providers use multiple servers for a domain (high availability). This way, the resolution of the request can be carried out successfully even if one server is offline. Additional performance can be achieved with a content delivery network (CDN): Content is duplicated on multiple data centers and thus distributed around the world. This way, even users who are far away from the actual web hosting provider can achieve fast loading times.

A typical web hosting offer also includes a database, a PHP installation and an SSL certificate. Nowadays, almost no online presence can do without these basic technologies. That is why many providers include them as a matter of course in their hosting packages.

What services does web hosting include besides the provision of storage space?

Depending on the type of hosting chosen, web hosting consists of different elements. The basic scope of every provider is the provision of web space and web servers, i.e. the linking of domain names with the web space. In addition, users can book further services.

Especially in the area of shared hosting and managed hosting, e-mail services and 1-click installations of CMSs such as WordPress, TYPO3 or Joomla are also offered in various packages or for an additional charge along with the web space.

Common services offered by web hosts:

  • Domain transfer
  • E-mail service
  • Content Management Systems (CMS)
  • Backup service
  • Database backend
  • High availability
  • SSL certificates
  • Statistical evaluations
  • Technical Support
  • Monitoring
  • Server location selection