When you decide to launch a new website, you are faced with an age-old choice: Linux server hosting versus Windows hosting; which is better? The answer depends upon your needs and what you intend to do with the website, but there are some rough guidelines to follow.
The first thing to keep in mind is that if you choose Linux, you do NOT need to run Linux on your PC to host your site on the Linux platform. Which OS you run on your computer does not matter; even if you are running Windows XP, you can still use Linux to run your website.
When it comes down to choosing between Linux and Windows for your hosting, here are the major differences to remember:
Linux is an open source system. It is going to be less expensive for you to operate and keep up than Windows. So, a major benefit of Linux hosting is that it will cost you less than Windows. Also, Linux has a well-deserved reputation for stability and speed. The bottom line here is your Linux server probably is going to crash less than a Windows server.
Linux offers support for many types of applications, software and languages. These include Perl, MySQL, and PostgreSQL a great deal of others. Scalability is a major asset for this platform.
On the negative side, Linux cannot be used with some Microsoft technology. If you are using Access, ASP or MS SQL, you’ll want to opt for a Windows-based platform.
The major asset for using a Windows server for your website is that runs Microsoft software, such as MS SQL and Access. Windows also will give your web developers the full use of the programming ecosystems sponsored by Microsoft, such as Visual Basic Scripts and MS Index Server.
Your Windows developers will be able to develop your website with the tools that Microsoft offers: Visual Interdev and Microsoft Access, for example. If you use ASP, you can design a website that is database driven with Access and Microsoft SQL.
As you can see, running a website on a Linux or Windows server offers both advantages and disadvantages. Which you choose will depend on what sort of technology your site will use, and on your budget.