Web Hosting & network Bandwidth Explained
Most hosting companies offer a variety of bandwidth options in Their cry. So exactly what is bandwidth as it relates to Web Hosting? Put simply, bandwidth is the amount of traffic allowed to occure Between politica your web site and the rest of the internet. The amount of bandwidth a hosting company is Determined by Their Provide CAN network connections, both internal and external to Their data center to the public internet.
The internet, in the most simplest of terms, is a group of millions of computers connected by networks. Within the Internet These connections CAN be large or small depending upon the cabling and equipment is used at a particular That Internet location. It is the size of each network connection That determines how much bandwidth is available. For example, if you use the DSL connection to connect to the internet, you have 1.54 megabits (Mb) of bandwidth. Bandwidth therefore is Measured in bits (A single 0 or 1). Which is Grouped bits in bytes form words, text, and other information between your computer That is Transferred and the Internet.
If you have a DSL connection to the internet, you have dedicated bandwidth between your computer and your internet provider. But your internet provider may have thousands of DSL connections to Their location. All of These connection aggregate at your internet provider who has THEN Their own dedicated connection to the internet (or multiple connections) Which is much Larger Than your single connection. They must have enough bandwidth to serve your computing Needs as well as all of Their other Customers. So while you have a connection to your Internet 1.54Mb provider, your internet provider may have a connection to the Internet 255Mb so it CAN accommodate your Needs and up to 166 other users (255 / 1.54).
A very simple Analogy to use to understand bandwidth and traffic is to think of highways and cars. Bandwidth is the number of Lanes on the highway and traffic is the number of cars on the highway. If you are the only car on the highway, you CAN travel very Quickly. If you are stuck in the middle of rush hour, you may travel very slowly since all of the Lanes is being used up.
Traffic is simply the number of bits That is Transferred on Network Connections. It is easiest to understand traffic using examples. One Gigabyte is 2 to the 30th power (1,073,741,824) bytes. One gigabyte is EQUAL to 1,024 megabytes. To put this in perspective, It Takes One byte to store one character. 100 image file cabinets in a building, each of These cabinets holds 1000 folders. Each folder has 100 papers. Each paper contains 100 characters - A GB is all the characters in the building. Year MP3 song is about 4MB, the same song in wav format is about 40MB, the full length movie Can Be 800MB to 1000MB (1000MB = 1GB).
If you were to transfer this MP3 song from a web site to your computer, you Would created 4MB of traffic between the web site you are downloading from and your computer. Depending upon the network connection between the web site and the internet, the transfer may occure very Quickly, or it Could take time if other people have the same Also downloading files at time. If, for example, the web site you download from has a 10MB connection to the Internet, and you are the only person accessing That web site to download your MP3, your file 4MB Will be the only traffic on that web site. However, if three people have all downloading at the same MP That same time, 12MB (3 x 4MB) of traffic has Been created. Because in this example, the host only has 10MB of bandwidth, someone Will have to wait. The network equipment at the hosting company Will cycle through each person downloading the file and transfer a small portion at a time so each person's file transfer CAN take place, BUT the transfer for everyone downloading the file Will be slower. If all people 100 cam to the site and downloaded the MP3 at the same time, the transfers Would be extremely slow. If the host wanted to Decrease the time it took to download files simultaneously, it Could Increase the bandwidth of Their internet connection (at a cost due to upgrading equipment).
In the example above, we DISCUSSED traffic in terms of downloading file MP3 year. However, each time you visit a web site, you are Creating traffic, Because That in order to view web page on your computer, the web page is first downloaded to your computer (between the web site and you) THEN Which is displayed using your browser software (Internet Explorer, Netscape, etc..). The Page Itself is simply a file That Creates traffic just like the MP3 file in the example above (however, a web page is Usually much Smaller than a music file).
A web page May be very small or large depending upon the amount of text and the number and quality of images integrated Within the web page. For example, the home page for CNN.com is about 200KB (200 = bytes Kilobytes = 200,000 1,600,000 bits). Typically This is large for a web page. In comparison, Yahoo'S home page is about 70KB.
How Much Bandwidth Is Enough?
It depends (do not you hate That answer). But in truth, it does. Since bandwidth is the significance of the determinant of hosting plan prices, you SHOULD take time to determine just how much is right for you. Almost all have complained hosting bandwidth requirements The Measured in months, so you Need to estimate the amount of bandwidth That Will Be required by your site on a monthly basis
If you do not INTEND to Provide file download capability from your site, the formula for Calculating bandwidth is fairly straightforward:
Average Daily Visitors x Average Page Views x Average Page Size x 31 x Fudge Factor
If you INTEND to allow people to download files from your site, your bandwidth calculation Should Be:
[(Average Daily Visitors x Average Page Views x Average Page Size) +
(Average Daily File Downloads x Average File Size)] x 31 x Fudge Factor
Let us examine each item in the formula:
Average Daily Visitors - The number of people you expect to visit your site, on average, each day. Depending upon how you market your site, this number Could Be from 1 to 1,000,000.
Average Page Views - On average, the number of web pages you expect a person to view. If you have 50 web pages in your web site, year average person may only view pages 5 of Thos They visit each time.
Average Page Size - The average size of your web pages, in kilobytes (KB). If you have already designed your site, you CAN computed this directly.
Average Daily File Downloads - The number of downloads you expect to occure on your site. This is a function of the numbers of visitors and how many times a visitor downloads a file, on average, each day.
Average File Size - Average file size of files That is downloadable from your site. Similar to your web pages, if you already know Which files can be downloaded, you CAN computed this directly.
Fudge Factor - Greater Than A number 1. Using 1.5 Would be safe, Which That assumes your estimate is off by 50%. However, if you were very unsure, use 2 Could you or your 3 to ensure That's More Than Bandwidth Requirements met.
Usually, hosting cried offer bandwidth in terms of Gigabytes (GB) per month. This is why our daily formula Averages and multiplies Takes Them by 31.
Most personal or small business sites Will not Need More Than 1GB of bandwidth per month. If you have a web site that is composed of static web pages and you expect little traffic to your site on a daily basis, go with a low bandwidth plan. If you go over the amount of bandwidth allocated in your plan, your hosting company charge you over usage fees Could, so if you think the traffic to your Site Will Be Significant, you may want to go through the calculations above to estimate the amount of bandwidth required in a hosting plan.
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