DigitalOcean is a New York City-headquartered hosting company specializing in cloud hosting solutions. Their infrastructure is highly scalable and targeted at developers building applications and websites. Depending on your storage needs, you can choose any plan from the 19 Droplet plans they offer. Their pricing is highly competitive and from as little as $5 per month, you can get server hosting.
- Secure Infrastructure
- API and Control Panel
- Advanced Equipment
- Unmanaged Hosting
- Predictable Pricing
- Active Knowledgeable Community
- Limited Customer Support
- Do Not Offer Basic Hosting
- Datacenters in Few Regions
DigitalOcean have specialized in providing cloud hosting. Because of this, they have invested in state-of-the-art technology, accessory services, and professional support to ensure you get the most out of your cloud hosting plan. Even though there is nothing as a total disaster-proof system, the company has configured their cloud servers to minimize the adverse effects of downtimes and loss of service.
There are two main categories of hosting plans the company offers: Standard Droplets and CPU Optimized Droplets.
If you are looking for hosting solution for your website or a staging environment, Standard Droplets are highly flexible for users with low-intensity compute needs.
The plans vary in memory from 1 GB to 192 GB. They also differ in SSD disk and VCPUs capacities. A VCPU stands for a Virtual Central Process Unit and one or more of these are assigned to a virtual machine in a cloud environment. The more the VCPUs in a plan, the higher the compute power.
The Standard Droplets category has a total of 14 plans. The plan you choose will depend on your compute needs and budget.
|1GB||1 vCPU||25 GB||1 TB||$5/mo $0.007/hr|
|2 GB||1 vCPU||50 GB||2 TB||$10/mo $0.015/hr|
|3 GB||1 vCPU||60 GB||3 TB||$15/mo $0.022/hr|
|2 GB||2 vCPUs||60 GB||3 TB||$15/mo $0.022/hr|
|1 GB||3 vCPUs||60 GB||3 TB||$15/mo $0.022/hr|
|4 GB||2 vCPUs||80 GB||4 TB||$20/mo $0.030/hr|
|8 GB||4 vCPUs||160 GB||5 TB||$40/mo $0.060/hr|
|16 GB||6 vCPUs||320 GB||6 TB||$80/mo $0.119/hr|
|32 GB||8 vCPUs||640 GB||7 TB||$160/mo $0.238/hr|
|48 GB||12 vCPUs||960 GB||8 TB||$240/mo $0.357/hr|
|64 GB||16 vCPUs||1.25 TB||9 TB||$320/mo $0.476/hr|
|96 GB||20 vCPUs||1.88 TB||10 TB||$480/mo $0.714/hr|
|128 GB||24 vCPUs||2.5 TB||11 TB||$640/mo $0.952/hr|
|192 GB||32 vCPUs||3.75 TB||12 TB||$960/mo $1.429/hr|
For example, if you are a small business user or a home-based enterprise, the 8 GB RAM, 160 GB SSD disk, 4 vCPUs, and 5 TB of monthly transfer plan that goes for $40 per month is suitable for you.
CPU Optimized Droplets
This category of Droplets is designed for intensive applications. If you are the kind of user looking for server resources that can support machine learning, video encoding, active front-end web servers, batch processing, and ad serving, then CPU Optimized Droplets are best for you. All the CPUs are Intel-type with dedicated hyper-threads.
|MEMORY||DEDICATED vCPUs||SSD DISK||TRANSFER||PRICE|
|4 GB||2 vCPUs||25 GB||4 TB||$40/mo $0.060/hr|
|8 GB||4 vCPUs||50 GB||5 TB||$80/mo $0.119/hr|
|16 GB||8 vCPUs||100 GB||6 TB||$160/mo $0.238/hr|
|32 GB||16 vCPUs||200 GB||7 TB||$320/mo $0.476/hr|
|64 GB||32 vCPUs||400 GB||9 TB||$640/mo $0.952/hr|
One notable advantage of signing up on the DigitalOcean Droplets is that you will enjoy the same infrastructure as that offered to their enterprise customers. This is not common among many hosting companies. Traditionally, hosting plans on the same platform are limited as to the infrastructure they can access.
- Secure Infrastructure
- API and Control Panel
- Advanced Equipment
- Unmanaged Hosting
- Predictable Pricing
- Active Knowledgeable Community
25 GB - 3,840 GB
When setting up your business and especially your website, one of the aspects you should emphasize on is business continuity. Once you launch your website, your customers will expect to find you online all the time and anything less than this will raise doubts as to your reliability.
DigitalOcean is a cloud hosting provider dedicated to offering you highly configurable virtual servers. Their server resources are distributed in 8 data regions around the globe. This means that in case one goes down or develops technical hitches, your website will not suffer the consequences of downtime.
To differentiate themselves from competition, the New York-based company have packed lots of high-end, developer-friendly features in their products. For instance, you can:
- Reduce downtime risks using floating IPs
- Secure your web resources using a cloud firewall
- Add block storage according to your project needs
- Manage every component of your overall set up through a custom API
A first glance at DigitalOcean creates the impression that they are designed for experienced users only. However, the truth is that the company targets anyone from website owners to high-end developers. You can easily find your space within the spectrum.
In DigitalOcean lingo, the virtual machines which are essentially servers, are known as Droplets. The Droplets run on Linux operating systems, are flexible, and customizable based on your business needs.
This means as your business grows and the demand for web resources increases, you can easily upgrade. In the same way, if your server needs reduce, you can downscale and pay less.
DigitalOcean Storage Resources
If you have large amounts of data, DigitalOcean allows you to create Spaces within seconds to store your data. These Spaces are completely scalable and data transfers are secured with HTTPS. The ideal kind of data to store in Spaces are video, audio, text, and images.
You have the option of using Spaces as a standalone service or combine it with other products on DigitalOcean such as Droplets. Pricing for Spaces is both predictable and affordable. For instance, you can get 250 GB of storage starting from $5 per month. In case you exceed your storage bundle and you want to add more, you will just pay $0.02 per GB of extra storage.
While Spaces deal with object storage, there is another storage solution known as Block Storage that deals with databases, mission-critical applications, and server-side languages. Much like Spaces, Block Storage is convenient and flexible.
Block Storage is also provisioned in generic block devices known as volumes. When you run your website, volumes are like storage drives that are locally connected. This means you can partition them, format, and manage just like any disk drive.
If you need more storage space, but you want to retain the processing power of your Droplet plan, you can move the volumes independently from one Droplet to another. This happens smoothly without affecting the Droplet power.
How to Get Started on DigitalOcean
If you want to sign up with DigitalOcean, the process is simple and quick. All you need is to give your company name, email address, and the payment details which can be PayPal or card. Within a short time, you will be logged into the DigitalOcean dashboard.
Though the dashboard looks a bit technical and intimidating, heading to the sidebar and tapping the Droplets brings some familiarity. When you hit create, the Droplet enables you to choose what you want on your server.
There are various Linux-based distros such as Fedora, CentOS, Ubuntu, FreeBSD, and Debian you can choose. Alternatively, you can go for the one-click apps such as LAMP, MySQL, Docker, and WordPress.
Simply clicking the create button sends instructions to DigitalOcean to start building the server for you. There are lots of accessory features for your server that the company provides including IPv6, and monitoring and alerting tools. In case of any significant server events, you get notifications in real time.
Once your server is up and running, you will see it displayed in the Droplets list. From here, you will see both your server IP address and name. If you want to set up a WordPress site, all you need is to paste the address on a browser window. The rest of the details including the name of your blog are like any WordPress set up on any host.
One of the things you will find a bit strange with DigitalOcean is that they have no cPanel. Because of this, the process of adding email accounts is relatively difficult. To do this, you have to log in through a web-based console or via SSH and then use Linux commands to configure your set up.
To help you navigate the technical bits, DigitalOcean have a tutorials section packed with over 2,000 step-by-step guides. This should make your life a little bit easier and you don’t have to be a Linux guru to break through.
Pros of DigitalOcean
DigitalOcean are committed to providing you with a secure environment for your data and other web resources. Some of their initiatives include:
- Physical Security – DigitalOcean have a total of 12 data centers located in some of the most physically secure environments in Amsterdam, New York, and other cities. Each data center has 24/7 onsite physical security, CCTV coverage, and biometric readers to safeguard their integrity.
- Infrastructure Security – To access DigitalOcean’s network infrastructure, you will have to go through multifactor authentication points that are closely monitored. Access is limited through Role-Based Access Control. This means only users who must access the system can log in.
- Backup Security – Backups and snapshots are stored on SAN servers that run on a non-publicly visible network. As a customer, you can manage the regions where your backups are stored for compliance and security purposes.
Custom API and Control Panel
When you have the right equipment, you can create applications and websites with ease. DigitalOcean complements this with an intuitive, but simple interface that enables you to organize and visualize all your projects.
The custom API gives you complete control over the Droplets you create. Since the API is open source, it allows you to renovate or tweak the interface to your liking.
The custom-designed control panel is a central feature in the management of your web resources. It helps you organize your staff, manage your domains, and do one-click installs. If your business has grown and you want more storage, you can allocate with just a single click.
DigitalOcean understand pretty well that to attract the caliber of application and web developers that they have today, they needed to invest in the best equipment for cloud hosting. In just 55 seconds, you can create a new SSD cloud server that gives you a clean, fast, and powerful experience.
All servers are enhanced with powerful hardware such as HEX Core machines and solid state hard drives. Depending on where your target audience is, you can choose a data center nearby.
The Droplet plans under DigitalOcean give you complete independence and control as you navigate around your web resources. Unlike managed hosting plans, you can customize the server to your liking. The management function usually comes at an extra cost and that is why DigitalOcean has some of the most competitive pricing.
Whichever way you allocate your memory, manage your bandwidth, and software installations, it is all up to you. You have the freedom of choice.
The goal of DigitalOcean is to simplify hosting infrastructure including pricing. All their pricing models are straightforward and predictable. For instance, all Droplets are billed per hour until you get to the monthly limit of 672 hours. This means no surprises when your bill checks in.
With rates as low as $5 per month, the Droplet plans are affordable even for home-based businesses. This all-inclusive pricing is what makes them preferred hosting providers.
Active Knowledgeable Community
Most hosting providers have invested in guides and tutorials on how to do some of the basic or even complex tasks. DigitalOcean have a dedicated tutorial page and a community of expert developers. They are very passionate about what they do and often help others navigate hosting challenges.
The question and answer environment is well-organized by category. If a question has already been answered previously, they point it out so that you can quickly refer to it. To encourage as many people to help, DigitalOcean put your name on the tutorial or article you have provided, and they pay you as well.
Despite the advanced equipment, exemplary knowledge center, and a wealth of other resources, DigitalOcean still falls short in some areas.
Their customer support is limited. While other hosting providers have phone and live chat facilities to engage with their clients, DigitalOcean only have support ticketing system. Developers may not have such a big problem with this, but first-time users may encounter challenges.
Even though DigitalOcean have friendlier pricing, the hosting plans they have, are targeted more at developers than small website owners. The level of technology is advanced, and they do not offer basic hosting.
Compared to sophisticated services such as Microsoft Azure, AWS, and Google cloud storage, DigitalOcean are not present in as many regions. If you want to locate your website closer to your customers, say in, Brazil, the closest data centers are in the New York City.
DigitalOcean have created an environment where developers and large firms can build websites and applications faster. The administration tools are simple to use and the storage and networking services robust. Through the all-in-one cloud solution, you and your team can spend more time on your core functions of building better software for your customers.
If you want to scale up or down depending on the volume of business, DigitalOcean have optimized their infrastructure to enable you to do so seamlessly. Therefore, don’t get stuck paying high prices in plans where you use half the resources. Scale appropriately to meet the unique needs of your business. It is, therefore, a competitive hosting provider anyone can try out especially in cloud-based services.