Linux Hosting: An Introduction

Background Knowledge about Linux and LAMP

Linux is the most common operating system for today's hosting
Linux Hosting is the most common way of web hosting, since Linux is the most popular operating system for servers in today's hosting industry. Linux is a free open source software, that is developed by different groups and companies world wide. Mostly bundeled with Linux, other open source and/or free components come along, like the Apache webserver, the PHP scripting language and the mySQL database system, only to mention the most important. The greatest benefits of Linux Hosting are low costs with very high stability, performance and security.

Advantages of Linux as an operating system

First of all, Linux OS is free, so Linux hosting is cheap. The Linux OS is developed by many different entities. Some well known are RedHat Linux, Ubuntu Linux, SUSe Linux and many others. Linux itself can be downloaded for free. Ubuntu even sends you a free installation DVD worldwide, even without shipping costs.

Linux is an open source software. That means, the source codes of the Linux OS are included in an open form, so that they can be modified by potentially everybody. This is completely contrary to Microsoft's proprietary operating system Windows, where source codes are compiled to binary code and therefore it's not possible to modify the software. Due to many people work on constantly improving Linux, security issues are found soon and immediately closed. Also other software improvements concerning speed, efficience of memory management and much more is improved to a very high level by a large community of people. In this way, the paradox can be explained, that although Linux is for free, it is in many aspects far supperior to the some hundret bucks costing Windows server OS. And that Windows security issues are a constant topic for web hosting on Windows servers, what makes it more expensive, while Linux hosting is very secure and reliable.

Common bundled Softwares in a Linux Hosting environment

As mentioned before, a server running on the Linux operating system uses a set of common applications and software components to provide its functionalities. The most common are:

Apache Webserver
Apache is a free software, that enables the Linux Computer to act as a web server. It is the most vital software on a Linux hosting server - without it, there is no hosting.

PHP scripting language
The most common server side scripting language used today. PHP is extremely powerful. Code snippets writen in PHP are usually in between HTML codes. These snippets are interpreted by the server. After complete execution of the PHP scripts, the dynamically created page is sent to the browser.

mySQL database
This is a very popular, stable and powerful database system. It can be downloaded for free and has a very complete online documentation. mySQL databases are mostly used in connection with PHP, however can also be used by ASP scripting language on Windows platforms via a myODBC driver.

Software for Linux OS

Most common softwares known from Windows platforms exist as a free and open source plagiate with very similar features and look-and-feel for Linux OS. Original Windows software does not work on Linux OS, though. However, most Windows-inspired softwares like Open Office ( do have nearly the same functions as e.g. Microsoft Office (some of them even more features), are for free, open source and natively developed for Linux OS. Firefox web browser and many other programs are working on Linux. It is a powerful operating system for webservers and meanwhile even a serious alternative for desktop PCs and Laptops.

Our editorial staff has compiled a list of the best Linux hosting providers and their hosting packages for our readers. You will find in-depth reviews, thoroughly reserched prices and features of their hosting plans and clear ratings.
Michael Lederstatter
Michael loves helping people like you finding the best hosting provider for their individual needs.

Michael is founder of and the web agency He works as a web designer and server admin since 1998.

When he's not blogging, he's probably outdoors growing food in his garden or doing something awesome with his dearest and the kids.

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