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AMZ DIGICOM

Digital Communication

Managed Server: the main features

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With the advance of digitalization, servers play an increasingly important role in the daily life of companies. Most of the time, these servers are administered by the company itself. But for some companies, it may be wise to entrust the management and maintenance of the server to specialists thanks to a Managed Server (in French: managed server).

What is a Managed Server?

Traditionally, the management of a company’s servers is handled internally by the IT team itself. These servers are referred to as “root servers” (rootserver). They certainly have certain advantages, but also entail a considerable administrative burden. For some businesses, a managed server is therefore more appropriate. The Managed Server solution (often abbreviated as “MServer”) differs from a traditional root server on one essential point: the maintenance and administration of the server is carried out by an external company. The service provider is responsible for the following tasks in particular:

  • maintenance of the operating system and physical components
  • regular operating system and software updates
  • enhanced security and continuous monitoring for optimal availability
  • professional technical support to solve problems quickly

But Managed Servers have other important characteristics to consider. On the one hand, an MServer is usually based on a dedicated server, which means that server resources are exclusively reserved for the client. For shared resources, on the contrary, it is necessary to rely on a virtual server (also called VPS for Virtual Private Server). The resources of the physical server are then distributed among the clients according to their needs. With a VPS, the data and processes of the different customers nevertheless remain separated from each other thanks to the principle of virtualization.

Moreover, in the case of a Managed Server, the management of the operating system is entirely the responsibility of the supplier. This initially means that the customer does not have to worry about updates and other maintenance tasks, but also that he has less decision-making power on certain points. This is often combined with an increased security system in which the server can only have one administrator, thus completely excluding the client from the management and maintenance of the server.

Managed Server: pros and cons

One thing is certain, managed servers bring a certain relief and simplification which can prove to be very advantageous for certain companies. However, MServers also have drawbacks. We present the main advantages and disadvantages of a Managed Server solution:

Benefits Disadvantages
✔ Workload relief: the main advantage of a managed server is the effort saved. Companies can thus concentrate on their core business. ✘ Costs: managing a server requires time and expertise, Managed Servers are often more expensive than root servers.
✔ High scalability: hosts that offer managed servers make a lot of server hardware available. Therefore, an MServer can quickly and easily scale your resources. ✘ Dependence on the service provider: by outsourcing certain tasks, you become dependent on your provider. Poor service can therefore have a negative impact on your business.
✔ Expertise in the field: managed servers are operated by competent professionals. ✘ Limited control: as a customer, you are excluded from certain decisions concerning the management of your system. Additionally, you are restricted to the software and hardware offerings of your vendor.
✔ Additional services: Managed server providers often include additional services in their contracts, such as regular backups or integration with external platforms.

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Who are Managed Servers for?

With a Managed Server, businesses can both save time and ensure their servers are secure and always accessible. This is especially interesting for start-ups and small and medium enterprises (SME), because they generally have less capacity available to manage one or more servers. Small businesses often don’t have the IT team needed to take on this responsibility. Another advantage: the high scalability of an MServer is ideal for fast-growing companies.

For large enterprises that need a lot of server power, root servers are generally more suitable and are still more economical overall. These companies usually have more resources with which they can employ qualified staff and invest in their own server hardware. In this way, these companies have the opportunity to continuously adapt their servers to their needs.

But since small companies generally have much less funds available than large groups, the price of a Managed Server can sometimes exclude this solution. In such cases, SMEs can then turn to a Virtual MServer. This solution offers almost all the advantages of a dedicated MServer, except that computer resources must be shared with other clients. This is the most economical option, but it also has a downside: performance depends on the general server load.

When choosing between a dedicated server and a virtual server, there are several things to consider. In this article, learn what the differences are between these two types of servers so that you can choose the solution that best suits your requirements.

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