When it comes to choosing the right hosting solution, one of the things you will need to consider is your choice of storage drive. Essentially, there are two types of storage device available for your server: the HDD hard disk drive and the SSD solid state drive. In this post, we’ll look at why you should move on from the traditional HDD and opt for the more modern and superior SSD.
While the HDD still provides an adequate way of storing data, its popularity today lies in the fact that its long-established technology is cheaper. PCs, servers and other devices which use HDDs are generally of the lower-spec, less expensive end of the product spectrum. SSD drives and SSD hosting, although more expensive per GB of storage, bring some extremely useful benefits.
What’s the difference between HDD and SSD?
The principal difference between HDD and SSD is that HDD drives are mechanical and SSDs are not. To work, an HDD has a spinning disk, similar to a DVD, on which the data is written to or read from. SSDs store data on microchips and so need no moving parts; this is what makes them solid state.
Benefits of SSD drives for web hosting
1. Faster website performance
As SSDs have no moving parts, they can write and load data much faster than a traditional HDD. The increased speed means they significantly outperform HDDs when it comes to helping your website load quicker on your users’ browsers. This provides you with two essential benefits. Firstly, as search engines reward faster loading sites with higher rankings, this can translate into increased numbers of organic visitors arriving at your site. Secondly, and just as important, those additional, new visitors are more likely to buy from you. This is because quick loading websites have lower abandonment rates and higher conversion rates than their slower counterparts.
2. Reduced chance of data loss
One of the big disadvantages of HDDs is that they need moving parts to work and this makes them prone to breakdown or damage. Moving parts like motors suffer from wear and tear and can be easily broken if they are banged into or dropped. Compared to an SSD, which needs no moving parts, it means businesses using HDDs are more vulnerable to disk failure and potentially devastating data loss. SSDs are far more reliable and stable and last for much longer.
As data loss can put a company permanently out of business, especially if you don’t have a suitable backup solution in place, SSDs are the safest choice.
3. Faster multitasking
SSDs differ from HDDs in that they are able to read and write data at the same time. This multi-tasking capability enables them to execute web requests much quicker than HHDs can; improving the performance of your website even when there is a lot of traffic or you are running multiple processes. Furthermore, the increased read/write speed also reduces the burden on your CPU, freeing up processing power for other operations.
4. Boosts performance of CMS sites like WordPress
If your website is built using a CMS platform, like WordPress, and requires a database, SSDs can significantly improve your performance when compared to HDD. A CMS’ reliance on its database means the website’s performance is limited by the speed at which the hard drive can be written to and read. The enhancement provided by SSD can make a huge difference.
5. Cheaper and greener to run
For an HHD to work, the motor which spins it needs a constant power supply. The operation of the motor also generates heat which increases the use of internal cooling fans and external air conditioning, both of which cost money to run and add to your carbon footprint. As SSD drives do not need motors, they consume 80% less energy than HDDs. They also generate less heat, reducing the cost of power even more and keeping carbon emissions even lower. Lower power consumption means hosting companies can charge less for their packages while helping improve the environment.
6. No more defragging
One of the quirks of HDD drives is that to write to disk quicker, they will store bits of data in the first vacant part of the drive they come across. While this speeds up writing, it can significantly slow down reading as parts of the same file may be scattered across the disk and need bringing together before it can be opened. If the data on your HDD is fragmented in this way, it can seriously impact the speed at which your website loads. As a result, you may need to regularly defrag to speed things back up. SSDs, on the other hand, don’t store data in the same way and thus files never become fragmented. As a result, files are stored complete and thus can be loaded much faster.
7. SSDs are available for all kinds of hosting
While SSD drives cost more than HDDs on a gigabyte to gigabyte basis, they are now available for all types of hosting, even on the most basic shared hosting plans. Here at WHUK, for example, our cPanel Starter Plan, with 5GB SSD storage, costs only £2.57 (plus VAT) per month. Our Basic Linux VPS plans, with 30GB SSD storage, are similarly inexpensive at £12.99 (plus VAT) per month. SSD storage is also available for our cloud packages and dedicated servers.
Faster, more reliable, greener and less expensive to run, SSDs are the best solution when it comes to choosing your web hosting data storage. They improve performance in a range of ways, boosting operating speeds and website loading times while reducing the risk of data loss.
For more information, visit our homepage to see our range of SSD hosting solutions.