HDD vs SSD Reseller Hosting – A Quick Guide
In this article we want to give you more information about the different types of drives used in web servers to provide the best reseller hosting services. There is big difference between the two and we will explain below what it is and how it affects the performance of your server. Choosing a server with powerful hardware will allow your web sites to load quicker. That is a big factor nowadays. If your web site takes more than 3-4 seconds to load you will lose visitors. That’s why it is important to choose the right hosting company which can deliver quality services by using proper hardware and providing adequate technical support.
1. HDD drives
What are HDD drives? Those are hardware devices used to store data by magnetizing. They have been invented many years ago and they are the most used devices for storing data nowadays. If you are interested to dig very deep into what a HDD is and how it works we recommend you to read the wiki article at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hard_disk_drive. We are not going to get into such details here but we will cover the part related to web servers and specifically reseller hosting. The HDD’s are described mainly by the following points.
- The cheapest devices to store data available on the market
- Support of up to 12TB per drive
- Best for backup/storage purposes
- Slower than SAS and SSD drives
- High failure rate
An enterprise HDD such as the WD RE drive can do about 160MB/s sequential read and you usually need a minimum of 4 such drives to build a decent web server in RAID10 configuration. It is very important to have RAID10 instead of RAID1, RAID5 or RAID6 because it will provide the best performance for your server and in a web server you need performance. With 4 HDD disks configured in RAID10 you can get about 300 read/write operations (IOPS) per second.
2. SSD drives
SSD drives are the next generation media to store data on a high performance block device. They became popular about 5-6 years ago. There are both user grade SSD’s and enterprise drives which are built to be used in datacenters under high and continues load. Below are their main advantages and disadvantages.
- High performance in both reads and writes
- Can do many read/write operations per second
- Allow the server owner to utilize the CPU at 100% by removing the IO bottleneck
- Great reliability. More reliable than HDD drives.
- Cost too much compared to HDD’s
HDD vs SSD reseller hosting
If you look at the advantages and disadvantages above you will easily see that it is better to have your reseller hosting plan on a server with SSD storage. Why? Mainly because of the speed. An SSD drive outperforms a HDD by 10+ times. The huge difference in a web server comes from two factors. The first one is latency. An SSD drive finds the data on the device much quicker than a HDD. That means your web site will load quicker as your mysql queries will be completed quicker. The second factor is random writes. 80% of the IO activity on a web server comes from random writes. The HDD is very weak in that part. An SSD can do 30-40 times more random writes per second.
How the drives affect your reseller account’s performance?
If the drives in your servers are slow then they will make the other parts in the server wait for them. For example, if you have a busy forum with many visitors constantly adding new posts that will mean your server will be constantly saving that data to your forum database. Such writes are random. If the posts are many and you use a HDD your server will slow down much sooner compared to if you had the same server but with an SSD drive instead. Why? Because the server will wait for the current write requests to be completed before new ones can be served. Since the HDD is slow that limit is easy reached.
SSD doesn’t mean you have unlimited power in your reseller account
Keep in mind that using a reseller hosting account on an SSD server doesn’t give you the opportunity to host very busy web sites. Why? Because your web sites will hit the hosting company’s CPU limits. If you have a too busy web site getting many thousands of visitors on daily basis then it’s best to look at a cloud hosting server with SSD storage.
SSD does not guarantee quality
SSD servers can still get overcrowded and overloaded. If the hosting company is not managing the servers well, adding too many accounts on them, not monitoring them properly, allowing single web sites to degrade the performance of the entire server, not keeping the server up to date and secure allowing hackers to easily compromise web sites and use them to send spam. All that will result in bad server performance and you will not be happy with your reseller hosting account. The most important part in web hosting is technical support. Technical support is the big difference between web hosting companies. Everyone can buy hardware.