As your website’s traffic grows, shared hosting solutions become more and more constricting. However, dedicated hosting can leave a sizable dent in your finances, particularly for fledgling sites. Virtual private server (VPS) hosting represents the best of both worlds between shared and dedicated options, offering considerable, yet affordable, Windows server resources. The best Windows VPS hosting strikes the perfect balance between cost and efficiency and represents the web hosting solution of choice for most medium-sized companies.
What Is Windows VPS Hosting?
Virtual Private Server hosting represents a specific hosting service: Virtual servers create a dedicated server on what is practically a shared server. In other words, virtualization allows companies to partition off a piece of shared hosting resources.
Thus, the best Windows VPS hosting providers circumvent shared hosting’s biggest drawback – the division of server resources. With shared hosting, if one of the sites on the server starts pulling more server power due to increased traffic, all the other sites on said Windows server could be negatively impacted. That is the main difference between shared and VPS hosting – virtual private servers reserve a portion of their resources no other site can access, providing you with a stable stream of server power.
Dedicated servers, on the other hand, put a whole physical server at your disposal. The power dedicated servers contain easily overshadows even the best Windows server VPS hosting options. However, a dedicated Windows server is significantly more expensive than virtual servers, so unless your site has a very high traffic load, a VPS hosting plan is the optimal choice.
Top Best Windows VPS Hosting
Cheap Windows VPS hosting is the name of the game with ASPHostPortal. This renowned hosting service is our number one choice because it offers all types of hosting services, on virtual servers and otherwise. Unfortunately, constricting bandwidth limitations are this Windows VPS hosting service’s single – but significant – downside.
ASPHostPortal offers Windows VPS hosting with cloud, HDD, and SSD storage options, as well as reseller, shared, and dedicated hosting plans.
The standard 99.99% uptime guarantee also makes an expected return. And as its competitive comparison chart with other competitors will tell you, ASPHostPortal has proven itself to be one of the most reliable Windows VPS hosting service providers out there.
One crucial aspect that’s often overlooked when reviewing VPS hosting providers is customer support. ASPHostPortal excels in this department, promising to answer support tickets in less than an hour. The value of expedient support cannot be overstated, as you’ll want to resolve any problems with your site’s performance as soon as possible.
ASPHostPortal’s Windows VPS plans are divided into eight main groups – Cloud Tier One, Cloud Tier Two, Cloud Tier Three, Cloud Tier Four, Cloud Tier Five, Cloud Tier Six, Cloud Tier Seven, and Cloud Tier Eight. You can also choose their advanced plan that comes with SQL Web Edition installed on their server. This plan start from $17.99/month.
The best managed Windows VPS hosting you can find here is Cloud Tier Five or above, while self-managers can opt for Cloud Tier One or Cloud Tier Two. Each of these groups includes several plans that differ by Windows server hardware strength.
CPU options range from a single to four cores; bandwidth can be anything from 1000 GB to 8000 GB, cloud and SSD storage goes between 30 GB and 400 GB, and there’s a minimum of 1 GB and a maximum of 32 GB in guaranteed RAM.
The best web hosting here differs mainly in the type of storage offered. With Cloud Tier One VPS, you get SAN storage, SSD storage with the SSD plan, cloud hosting with Cloud Tier Two and Three, and SSD RAID with Cloud Tier Four hosting. All the plans come with remote desktop access and 24/7 customer support. The cheaper VPS plans are unmanaged by default, but you can get fully managed Windows VPS monitoring starting with $12.99/month.
ASPHostPortal prices are affordable and flexible. If you wish to upgrade a particular aspect of your server, like storage or RAM, you can pay a small additional fee instead of opting for a whole new plan. The starting prices for each plan with this top web hosting company are as follows:
- Cloud Tier One VPS – from $12.99/month
- Cloud Tier Two VPS – from $18.99/month
- Cloud Tier Three VPS – from $28.99/month
- Cloud Tier Four VPS – from $39.99/month
- Cloud Tier Five VPS – from $59.99/month
- Cloud Tier Six VPS – from $69.99/month
- Cloud Tier Seven VPS – from $104.99/month
- Cloud Tier Eight VPS – from $159.99/month
The prices shown are for annual subscriptions, but you can also hike up your monthly installment if you want a shorter plan, or addons such as DDoS protection, SSD storage, etc. What’s more, if you go for Plesk or cPanel hosting, you get a free SSL certificate.
ASPHostPortal brings forth top-class customer support, excellent Windows server stability, and affordable VPS plans. Nonetheless, some customers might find the storage and bandwidth limits a bit too constricting.
Founded way back in 2008, HostForLIFE.eu became one of the most popular Windows VPS cloud hosting providers on the market over the years. It offers fully customizable plans with high bandwidth caps and both unmanaged and managed VPS hosting.
Total customization is the main advantage of this virtual Windows server hosting provider. Practically every feature can be altered according to your needs: You can pick the server type, Windows server version (e.g., Windows server 2012, Windows server 2016, etc.), whether the CPUs are assigned to a dedicated or non-dedicated physical CPU, and which data center the server will be located on – something we rarely see Windows VPS hosting companies offer.
The level of hardware tailoring is why HostForLIFE.eu is considered one of the best web hosting companies. RAM capacities start at 1 GB and go all the way up to 512 GB. CPU choices are equally varied, starting from single-core CPUs up to a whopping 40 cores. HostForLIFE.eu only uses SSD storage, ranging from 20 GB to 4 TB in space. Bandwidth-wise, outgoing traffic is limited to 1-5 TB, depending on the data center, with speeds going up to 10 Gbit/sec.
As mentioned, you can also choose the operating system you wish the server to run on, between various versions of Windows VPS and a custom operating system you can import. For a Windows server, you can choose between different editions and 32- and 64-bit versions. The wide range of possible operating system addons makes HostForLIFE.eu possibly the best Windows VPS hosting with remote desktop options. There’s Plesk panel, Microsoft SQL, the aforementioned remote desktop, and more, all for managed and unmanaged Windows virtual server hosting. Unfortunately, no free SSL certificate is provided with any of the VPS plans. On the plus side, they all offer DDoS protection.
Like most web hosting providers, HostForLIFE.eu has a 99.95% uptime guarantee on every server and doesn’t charge extra for hardware maintenance. This cloud hosting platform also claims to need a single minute to set up your virtual private server and can instantly scale it up or down if you ever wish to change your initial configuration.
The pricing plans with this Windows VPS host are simple: From the basic shared hosting plans to the best VPS server packages on offer, the price increases by €12.99 per tier. With a single-core CPU, 1 GB RAM, 30 GB storage, and 1 TB of bandwidth, the cheapest VPS plan will set you back only $10 per month. The most expensive plan costs €139.99/month.
HostForLIFE.eu can be found on practically any list for top Windows VPS cloud hosting, and it’s really no wonder. The customization level and user-friendliness that accompany this VPS hosting service are unparalleled.
TMDHosting may not be as much of a veteran as the other Windows VPS providers on here, but this in no way means it can’t compete with the best virtual private server service out there. This provider offers fully managed VPS hosting, 24/7 support, free backups and site transfers, as well as gratis app and component installation.
Metrics are the foundation of any candidate claiming to be the best VPS service – specifically uptime and load times. TMDHosting ticks both boxes: During testing, their VPS server maintained near-100% uptime and justified the staple guarantee. In the past, TMDHosting’s main drawback was server stability, so these high scores on uptime tests are great news. Also, TMDHosting easily beats many of its competitors in load time comparisons.
All VPS plans come with 24/7 security monitoring and daily backups, as well as TMDHosting’s anti-spam email tool. Additionally, all servers are protected by a firewall.
TMDHosting offers some of the market’s most attractive Windows VPS hosting plans. All plans are fully managed, run on Windows Server 2016, and include 24/7 support, free setup, and Plesk control panel. Different tiers are, as always, set apart by their hardware capabilities:
- WIN VPS1 – 80 GB SSD, 3 TB bandwidth, 2 CPU cores, 4 GB RAM
- WIN VPS2 – 160 GB SSD, 4 TB bandwidth, 4 CPU cores, 8 GB RAM
- WIN VPS3 – 320 GB SSD, 5 TB bandwidth, 6 CPU cores, 16 GB RAM
- WIN VPS4 – 640 GB SSD, 6 TB bandwidth, 8 CPU cores, 32 GB RAM
- WIN VPS5 – 1280 GB SSD, 10 TB bandwidth, 16 CPU cores, 64 GB RAM
The storage space and additional features truly set TMDHosting apart.
TMDHosting might not offer cheap managed VPS hosting, but it does have clear-cut plans, something we don’t see with many web hosts. The WIN VPS1 plan’s standard pricing is currently $79.95/mo, while the top-tier WIN VPS5 package costs a whopping $564.95/mo. These prices are TMDHosting’s only – nonetheless very real – downside. However, you won’t be going out-of-pocket immediately: In case you’re unsatisfied with the service, there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee.
If money is not too much of an object for you, TMDHosting certainly offers some of the best managed Windows VPS hosting when you take into account the server power included with each plan. Its top-notch support team and security features are nothing to scoff at either. Nonetheless, it’s on the premium end of the pricing spectrum, so think carefully before opting for it.
5 Factors to Evaluate Your Windows VPS Hosting
We centered our reviews for this list around a few key factors we feel to be the most important when evaluating VPS hosting options. You can use them to guide your purchase decision, as well
1. Server Power
Hosting servers are, at their core, fairly similar to the PCs we use every day. Their hardware capabilities determine how quickly and smoothly the hosted sites will load and run. In your search for the best Microsoft Windows VPS hosting providers, the essential components to look into are the CPU and RAM.
The CPU represents the server’s muscle, determining how quickly it can process information and whether it can handle high traffic loads or complicated database queries. CPU power is measured in clock strength (GHz) and the number of cores the processor has. For websites primarily running static pages, CPU power won’t be much of a prerequisite. However, if you’re running a content management system or have an interactive site, you’ll need a CPU capable of handling more instructions.
RAM (Random Access Memory) acts as the server’s short-term memory and is crucial when choosing the best Windows-based VPS hosting provider. RAM temporarily stores data that the various applications and processes on your site need to access to run properly. More RAM capacity increases the temporary workspace a server has at its disposal, alleviating the need to fetch data from permanent storage. In other words, more RAM equals a quicker website.
All servers, including those for VPS website hosting, utilize a cloud server, solid-state, or hard drives for backups, config files, and images. There’s really not much wisdom to it – the more storage space you have, the better. Of course, the providers on our best VPS Windows hosting list have varying capacities, and you should pick the ones that satisfy your storage needs. The bare minimum you’ll need is 100 GB, although some basic packages offer much less than this.
You’ll also have to choose between cloud, SSD, and HDD storage. Traditional hard drives are cheaper and usually come with larger capacities but are generally slower than SSDs. On the other hand, SSDs bring lightning speeds with smaller volumes, but at a higher price. The best Windows VPS host will have all options on offer.
3. Windows License
A unique aspect of Windows VPS web hosting is that it requires a Microsoft license to run. These licenses can be costly, but many hosting companies bundle the best VPS hosting with a free Windows license. However, this is not always the case, so make sure of that first. Alternatively, a few hosts might let you use your own Windows license for the server.
The majority of VPS hosting services impose bandwidth caps on their plans, limiting how much data can be downloaded or uploaded, as well as constricting your overall monthly data transfers. Some providers have plans that offer unlimited monthly bandwidth, as well.
There are no rules for how much bandwidth you’ll need, but always go above your projected requirements and choose companies that allow you to increase the cap if needed.
When choosing between VPS hosting providers, remember to check out their security services. Blog-oriented websites with static pages can probably do without it, but eCommerce platforms or those handling sensitive user information need top-notch security. SSL encryption is considered the industry standard for website security, represented by a padlock symbol next to the URL.
Besides SSL/TLS encryption, security features to seek out are backups, security monitoring, and malware protection. These often come as premium features, so make room in your budget for that, too.