5 Reasons to use LiteSpeed Web Server
ScalaHosting has been using the LiteSpeed web server for quite some time and we’ve gathered some information about it. We would like to share it so others can learn from our experience and implement LiteSpeed on their web servers to increase their web sites’ speed, performance and security. LiteSpeed has many advantages and is known to be the fastest web server in the world at this time. Web hosting companies started to install it on their servers in the last 1-2 years. As a result, cPanel now officially supports LiteSpeed and there is a plugin for cPanel servers which can be used for easier management of the LiteSpeed web server from a graphic interface directly in WHM.
LiteSpeed or Apache+Nginx+Varnish+PHP OPcache
We must state from the beginning that the LiteSpeed web server is not free like the most used web server in the world Apache. Some people prefer to try and configure Apache with Nginx and Varnish to do caching and speed up static content. To speed up PHP they also configure Opcache or another php caching free mechanism. But with all custom configurations it is hard to get even near to the performance and efficiency of LiteSpeed. Moreover, such custom optimizations lead to random problems and downtime for the web sites. You will need to restart Varnish/Nginx to “resolve” weird problems. LiteSpeed is the winner here and the only disadvantage is that you have to pay for it.
Let’s stop here and list the top 5 reasons why you should be using LiteSpeed web server instead of Apache or another free alternative.
1. LiteSpeed is a drop-in replacement of Apache
If you have Apache running on your web servers and you want to speed them up significantly that’s very easy to do with the LiteSpeed web server. It is a drop-in replacement of Apache and is 100% compatible. That means anything that works under Apache will work under the LiteSpeed web server too. The transition is smooth and easy. Your code in .htaccess continues to work. Your httpd.conf file continues to work in the same manner. The switch from Apache to the LiteSpeed web server takes some minutes to install and 2-3 seconds to get your web sites loading via LiteSpeed. If you use cPanel/WHM there is a free plugin you can use to administrate LiteSpeed from a graphic interface.
2. The LiteSpeed Web Server increases performance
LiteSpeed works very well in serving busy web sites. By busy web sites we mean pages with thousands of visitors per second. All that happens with minimal hardware resources such as memory and CPU. LiteSpeed serves static content faster than any other web server. It increases PHP performance due to its custom PHP LSAPI. LiteSpeed is most efficient with busy web sites and it saves you tones of money for web hosting. For example, if you have a busy WordPress web site on a cPanel cloud server with Apache which brings down the website costing you downtime and visitors then here is where LiteSpeed kicks in. You install LiteSpeed on your VPS to replace Apache and you will see your load dropping from 20+ to 2-3. You don’t believe it? We could not believe it either until we saw it some years ago. ScalaHosting hosts for busy web sites using the LiteSpeed web server’s advantages to increase efficiency and performance. You better pay $50 for an ssd cloud server and $32 for LiteSpeed rather than $150+ for a dedicated server.
3. LiteSpeed Web Server will increase security
First of all, since it is 100% Apache compatible, you can use the mod_security module that you use with Apache to block most of the web attacks. The same mod_security rules that you use for Apache will work for LiteSpeed. No extra work required. On top of that LiteSpeed has its own security features which will come handy when your web site gets a DoS or DDoS attack. I can tell you that such attacks are pretty popular these days and happen very often. Using LiteSpeed will protect you from most of them. It has built-in anti-DDoS features such as bandwidth and connections throttling. LiteSpeed are also pretty quick in addressing DoS attacks. After a DoS attack has been reported to them they released a fix in less than 2 hours which was available to all LiteSpeed-protected servers to update and become secure. You can read the full story at http://blog.litespeedtech.com/2017/02/17/ddos-attacks-taken-offline-by-litespeed-enterprise-5-1-13/. ScalaHosting LiteSpeed web servers have been updated right away and are currently secure as well.
4. LiteSpeed reduces hardware costs
You better pay $32 for a LiteSpeed license rather than hundreds of dollars to add more hardware which can handle the load of your web site’s visitors. Moreover, LiteSpeed brings other benefits such as the additional security and speed of your web site. The LiteSpeed web server may also reduce your costs for systems administration as it includes 24/7 technical support. You can always contact them and get immediate help. Additionally, cPanel supports LiteSpeed officially. If you use cPanel you can contact them for support too. LiteSpeed will keep the load of your server low and you will have time to work on other projects rather than investigating what is overloading your server and what to do in order to fix it.
5. You get better results and more profit
Downtime and lost visitors is lost profit. If you run a busy ecommerce web site you don’t want your web site to be down for a single minute. That will mean lost visitors which might be lost orders and lost revenue. LiteSpeed will give you the extra performance and efficiency so that your uptime is better, your server is not busy and you don’t lose visitors. You need to ask yourself if it is worth not to pay $32 for LiteSpeed and risk losing sales? ScalaHosting recommends the LiteSpeed web server to all their corporate customers and many of them use it. We don’t have a single unhappy customer using LiteSpeed on their server.