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A Web host is an organization that sells or leases memory space on its servers. Web hosting is typically done in a data center, which provides services to clients that enable them to publish websites on the Internet. A Web host can also provide data center space and an Internet connection for servers owned by others. The service provided by a Web host is called Web hosting.
In France and Latin American countries, Web hosting may be referred to as colocation or housing.
A Web host may be either an Internet service provider, or companies that specifically provide a Web hosting service, such as GoDaddy, BlueHost and FatCow. Personal websites are often provided for free, while business websites are much more expensive.
The percentage of time the Web host server is actually connected to the Internet, thus allowing access to the websites it hosts, is called uptime. This value is typically higher than 99 percent, with about 45 minutes of downtime per month for maintenance.
There are many types of Web hosts and Web hosting services. These include:
Those looking for a Web host need to examine their requirements before choosing a Web hosting service. Some of these may include database server software, software for writing scripts, emails for business purposes, streaming media and the operating system offered. Often the technical aspects of managing a website may be more easily managed if the Web host also provides a Web content management system.