Windows hosting is when you host a website using the Microsoft Windows operating system (OS). When you host a website, that website’s content and data are stored on your web hosting provider’s server. These servers can use various types of operating systems, including Windows and Linux. Generally, Linux is the preferred choice of server when it comes to hosting, as this OS provides more features needed by advanced web designers. However, using Windows as a server OS is steadily becoming more popular due to its flexibility, ease of use, and its compatibility with various other Windows platforms and applications. You’ll want to choose Windows hosting if you’re building your website with the open-source framework, ASP.NET, or if you’re planning to use resources that rely on Windows in order to work.
If you’ve decided that you want to use Windows hosting, then the next step is to find a suitable Windows web host. For a start, your web host needs to support Windows servers. If your website requires specific software or scripts then you’ll have to double-check that it’s supported by your chosen web host. Even with this crossed off the list, there is still a wide range of web hosting providers to choose from, so we’re going to narrow them down to just three. This way you can ensure that you’re choosing a web host that’s reliable, secure, and full of extra features. So, here are the best Windows hosting providers in 2021.
Did you know that according to Microsoft, there are over 1.3 billion devices running Windows 10?
What criteria we used to find the best Windows hosting providers
Choosing the right web host can be a daunting task, so we’re here to help. We have based our top recommended Windows web hosts based on the following categories: Performance, Cost, Features, and Support
We believe that the best Windows web hosting providers will rate highly in all four of these categories and will offer users a well-rounded and worthwhile hosting experience.
- Performance — Fast speeds and stable uptime should always be your priority, and choosing the right web host is key for ensuring the best performance possible. You want to avoid losing visitors from slow loading speeds or have them not be able to access your website at all due to regular downtime. We’ve chosen web hosts that have above-average page loading speeds (less than 2 seconds) as well as a minimum of 99.9% uptime, so your website is only down for less than a few hours out of an entire year.
- Cost — Hosting a website shouldn’t have to break the bank. If you’re planning on running just a small website, then it’s important to use a web host that has flexible and affordable plans. In this case, you don’t have to spend any extra money unnecessarily for resources or features that you don’t even need. On the other hand, if you intend to run a big and complex website, then you’ll want a hosting plan that offers you enough resources to support the site.
Either way, you’ll still want to save money whenever you can whilst still getting all the required resources and features, so we’ve hand-picked web hosts for Windows that have great value for money. Additionally, these web hosts also all have flexible plans available that make it easy to scale alongside your website in the event of rapid growth or an increase in traffic.
- Features — A good web host for Windows will have a wide range of additional features to help make setting up and maintaining your website easy and hassle-free. We’ve selected web hosts that have robust security features like an SSL certificate to help protect you and your customers (if you’re running an eCommerce website). Our chosen web hosts also provide additional features such as an easy-to-use control panel, free web page templates, and automated back-ups.
- Support — For any user, having a reliable support team is a vital part of setting up and managing a website. Even advanced users can run into an unexpected issue that could lead to their website going down. So, it’s important for a Windows web hosting provider to have a helpful support team that’s available 24/7 to fix any issues or answer any questions.
It’s even better if a web host has a knowledge base available for users to find answers to common queries or follow a tutorial if needed. Therefore, each of our recommended web hosts has 24/7 support available as well as a comprehensive knowledge base.
Our top recommended Windows hosting providers in 2021
We have narrowed down the best Windows web hosts to just three using the above criteria. These web hosts are fantastic options for users looking to host their website through Windows.
This flexible and highly popular web host is a great choice for anyone looking to host a website, big or small. With noteworthy performance, powerful admin tools, and a wide set of extra features, HostGator is the full package that still comes at a reasonable price.
Hostgator has two Windows hosting plans available, personal and enterprise. For both these plans, HostGator uses Plesk as their control panel, which many users will appreciate due to its user-friendly interface and fantastic set of features. With the personal plan, you can host a single domain and get unmetered disk space and bandwidth, as well as free SSL. The enterprise plan allows up to 5 domains, unmetered disk space and bandwidth, free SSL, and a free dedicated IP address. Both plans come with a 45-day money-back guarantee, so you can test out either for a few weeks before fully committing.
But the features don’t stop there. With HostGator’s Windows hosting plans, you’ll receive plenty of additional add-ons such as unlimited MSSQL and MySQL, unlimited subdomains, free website migration, and access to HostGator’s drag-and-drop website building tool. There is also a range of powerful admin tools available for more advanced users including AWStats, hotlink protection, raw log manager, and Webalizer.
There are also tons of email features included in HostGator’s Windows hosting plans including unlimited POP3 accounts, autoresponders, mailing lists, and SpamAssassin, a tool that helps filter out unwanted spam emails.
HostGator has an uptime guarantee of 99.9%, so you can expect your website to have very little downtime. Additionally, your website will perform exceptionally, as HostGator can provide page loading speeds that are over twice as fast as the expected 2-second loading time. Don’t fret about backups either, as HostGator takes care of that. Your website will be automatically backed up each week, and you can also choose to manually back it up too through your control panel.
HostGator has a reputable support team that are eager to quickly assist with any issues. You can expect replies within minutes after contacting this support team via live chat, or you can also submit a ticket or send them an email. Support is available 24/7, but if you’d rather sort things out yourself, then you can check out HostGator’s impressive knowledge base.
For highly configurable and feature-rich Windows hosting plans, Hostwinds is one of our top recommendations. This web host provides almost unbeatable uptime in addition to fast speeds and a robust customer support team, making it an ideal web host for your website.
With Hostwinds you have the choice between fully managed and unmanaged Windows VPS hosting plans. There are plenty of options to choose from, with each offering a select number of resources, so you can select a plan that’s perfectly suited to your needs. The cheapest available plans for both managed and unmanaged Windows hosting provides you with 1 CPU core, 1 GB RAM, 30 GB storage, and 1 TB bandwidth. If you think you’ll be requiring more resources than that then you can instead opt for one of the mid-tier plans that provides you with 4 CPU cores, 12 GB RAM, 200 GB storage, and 4 TB bandwidth.
All plans come with custom ISO’s, real-time server backups (snapshots), and a real-time monitoring service. With this monitoring service, Hostwinds will constantly monitor your server and will automatically open a support ticket on your behalf if it detects any technical issues. If you find that your website needs additional resources, then you can easily upgrade your plan and scale your server at any time.
Hostwinds is extremely confident when it comes to performance and boasts an incredible 99.9999% uptime guarantee, equalling just 30 seconds of downtime per year. If you do happen to experience more than 30 seconds of downtime, then Hostwinds will provide you with an extra day of service. This confidence is extremely reassuring, as you’ll definitely want a web host that can guarantee an almost perfect uptime. This hosting provider’s speeds are also very impressive, with above-average page loading times.
To top it all off, Hostwinds has a well-trained support team who are here to help 24/7. There is also a useful knowledge base available that has hundreds of articles that address common questions and issues.
For a highly scalable Windows cloud hosting plan, your best bet will most likely be Kamatera. This web host allows you to build a plan that perfectly suits your website’s needs and even lets you scale hour-to-hour in order to handle sudden traffic spikes. Kamatera has over 20 years of expertise in cloud computing and caters to thousands of customers worldwide.
The flexibility offered by Kamatera is really what makes it stand out the most. You don’t have to worry about wasting any money on unspent resources, as you can choose to pay for them hourly rather than monthly. With this web host, you can pick and choose whichever resources and features you need for your website. You can choose between 1 – 140 CPU cores, 1 – 457 GB RAM, 30 – 4000 GB SSD space, so it’s safe to say that Kamatera can support websites of any size. This web host also makes it very quick and hassle-free to scale your server as your website grows.
All available plans come with SSL certificates so you can be sure that your customers are protected if you’re running an eCommerce website. Additionally, Kamatera provides a set of other robust security features including a web application firewall (WAF) that shields users from malware and DDoS attacks. You can configure this firewall too using root access to block specific IPs or impose geo-restrictions.
Kamatera also performs well when it comes to speed, so you can expect reasonably fast loading speeds that won’t keep your visitors waiting around. This web host also guarantees a 99.95%, which ranks very well. If you want to see for yourself, then you can make use of Kametera’s 30-day free trial.
Kamatera makes it easy to manage and run your server, and its included control panel makes completing tasks a breeze. If you want to reduce your workload even more, then you can pay a small additional fee for Kamatera’s team to set up and manage any and all Microsoft business apps including MS, CRM, and Sharepoint. There is also a one-click installer available for most popular applications.
Kamatera’s support team has a terrific reputation and is available round the clock. If you have any issues, then you will be promptly connected with a support team member who will reply quickly and will do whatever they can to get you back on track. You can also find a helpful blog on Kamatera’s website that is full of helpful and informative articles.