The Best Dedicated Server Hosting in 2021

By Jovan Milenkovic January 13, 2021

Hosting a website is like finding a place to live. On the lower end, you’re living in a dorm and sharing a bathroom with a dozen roommates – or you’re hosting your website on a shared server. In between, you can get VPS hosting, which is like having your own studio apartment, or make your own life easier and try reseller hosting. And, finally, you can rent a house with a garden and a pool and have it all to yourself – the real-life equivalent of the best dedicated server hosting.

Of course, moving your website to a dedicated server makes total sense if it outgrows your current hosting solution. However, this decision requires a degree of expertise in terms of hardware and support. But which hosting company is the best fit? Who offers the best deals? Follow our guide and find out.

  • Powerful servers
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Around $100/mo just for the introductory offer
Price $119.89/mo
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  • Fully managed servers
  • 100% uptime guarantee
  • Rich toolkit
  • Pricey
Price $169/mo
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  • High-end hardware
  • Incredible RAM capacity
  • Highly customizable
  • Limited bandwidth
Price $98.67/mo
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  • Reliable servers
  • Great management tools
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Basic offer
Price $99.99/mo
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  • Fair hardware pricing
  • Great storage options
  • Highly customizable servers
  • Overpriced bandwidth
Price $106/mo
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1. HostGator

" Best Dedicated Hosting Server Overall "

  • CPU:
    2-8 cores
  • RAM:
    8-30 GB
  • Storage:
    1-2 TB HDD, or 512 GB - 1 TB SSD
  • Bandwidth:
    Unmetered
  • Server type:
    Managed and semi-managed

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Powerful servers
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Around $100/mo just for the introductory offer

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Powerful servers
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Around $100/mo just for the introductory offer
  • CPU:
    2-8 cores
  • RAM:
    8-30 GB
  • Storage:
    1-2 TB HDD, or 512 GB - 1 TB SSD
  • Bandwidth:
    Unmetered
  • Server type:
    Managed and semi-managed

HostGator needs no introduction. This Houston-based hosting company has been providing excellent service since 2002 and is currently one of the US’s fastest-growing companies. No matter what kind of hosting you need, HostGator has it, with an abundance of features to boot.

All HostGator servers run on the Intel Xeon-D architecture, and paired with fast CPUs is equally fast RAM. Lots of it, too – up to 30 GB. But bandwidth is the main reason HostGator could be the best dedicated server hosting company out there. Any server from this company, dedicated or not, includes unlimited bandwidth. Add some speedy SSDs to that, and you’ve got yourself one fast and reliable dedicated server setup. You can choose between Linux (CentOS & Ubuntu) or Windows installations, both with root access. 

HostGator’s server management approach is quite intriguing: You can choose between a fully managed and a semi-managed server. In other words, you can always count on a certain degree of support. Compared to other companies claiming to provide the best hosting for dedicated servers, HostGator truly offers the best of both worlds with minimal detriments.

There are two control panels available per OS – four in total. You can also have unlimited email and MySQL accounts, so you won’t run out even if you have a relatively large company. Security-wise, HostGator offers DDoS protection via Scrub Center. The network is fully redundant with several bandwidth providers, and you can also set up automated backups. All plans come with 24/7 support and server monitoring tools.

HostGator is an affordable dedicated server hosting solution, for the most part. The Value Server plan introductory offer costs under $100 a month. Semi-managed plans can save you a few dollars each month, although it’s not that significant a discount compared to higher tiers. On the other hand, a longer billing cycle will save you some very real money: If you choose to pay for 36 months in advance, you can get up to 50% off your price. Small businesses switching to dedicated servers can save thousands of dollars in the long run.

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2. DreamHost

" Best Dedicated Hosting Server for Managed Servers "

  • CPU:
    4-12 cores
  • RAM:
    4-64 GB
  • Storage:
    1-2 TB HDD, or 240 GB SSD
  • Bandwidth:
    Unmetered
  • Server type:
    Managed

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Fully managed servers
  • 100% uptime guarantee
  • Rich toolkit
  • Pricey

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Fully managed servers
  • 100% uptime guarantee
  • Rich toolkit
  • Pricey
  • CPU:
    4-12 cores
  • RAM:
    4-64 GB
  • Storage:
    1-2 TB HDD, or 240 GB SSD
  • Bandwidth:
    Unmetered
  • Server type:
    Managed

DreamHost offers the best Linux dedicated server hosting with fully managed servers. This is a Los Angeles hosting company mostly known for WordPress hosting solutions. Aside from that, DreamHost offers top-of-the-line hardware with its dedicated servers and some exciting plans.

So, what kind of hardware can you expect? Intel Xeon servers are a given, and they can have either 4 or 12 cores capable of 24-thread processing. These servers entail up to 64 GB of RAM – more than enough for several high-framerate gaming servers or webshops with loads of traffic. Like other popular dedicated server hosting providers, DreamHost offers both hard drives and SSDs, although the latter is only available as part of the Enhanced plans, along with 12-core CPUs. On the plus side, there aren’t any bandwidth caps, regardless of what plan you choose. The company also guarantees 100% uptime and 24/7 tech support for your server.

These are fully-managed servers, but you’ll still have full root and shell access, lots of great developer tools, all running on Ubuntu. Reselling is also an option, so you can go from dedicated server renting to a lucrative shared-hosting business. Other features include DDoS protection, IPv6 support, and server monitoring. All these tools are contained within DreamHost’s easy-to-use custom web app.

A bunch of hardware combinations means plenty of plans to choose from. They’re separated into two main groups: One with 4-core CPUs and hard drives and one with 12-core Xeons, more storage, and optional SSDs. Unfortunately, none of the currently available plans cost under $100, so you’ll need to look elsewhere if this is not enough of a cheap dedicated server for you. That being said, DreamHost has an excellent value proposition, considering that you can turn this investment into profit. Annual subscriptions drive the price down, too. The only real gripe we have is limited SSD storage – 240 GB is nothing to write home about, even if it gets the job done. Nonetheless, DreamHost is a serious contender. 

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3. A2 Hosting

" Best High-End Dedicated Hosting Servers "

  • CPU:
    4-8+ cores
  • RAM:
    8-512 GB
  • Storage:
    1000 GB - 4 TB HDD, or up 1 TB SSD
  • Bandwidth:
    Up to 20 TB/month
  • Server type:
    Managed and unmanaged servers

Things we liked / disliked:

  • High-end hardware
  • Incredible RAM capacity
  • Highly customizable
  • Limited bandwidth

Things we liked / disliked:

  • High-end hardware
  • Incredible RAM capacity
  • Highly customizable
  • Limited bandwidth
  • CPU:
    4-8+ cores
  • RAM:
    8-512 GB
  • Storage:
    1000 GB - 4 TB HDD, or up 1 TB SSD
  • Bandwidth:
    Up to 20 TB/month
  • Server type:
    Managed and unmanaged servers

Another regular on any “best of” hosting company list is A2 Hosting. Founded in 2001, it offers an incredible variety of plans, and many consider it the best dedicated server hosting for games, websites, and developer sandboxes. A2 Hosting is probably the most flexible hosting solution on the market, especially for gaming professionals.

Let’s start with a zinger: You can install up to 512 GB of RAM. On a less bombastic note, you can either go with fully managed or unmanaged hosting, pick and choose from several Intel and Intel Xeon processors that go up to 3.1 and 2.4 GHz, respectively, and 8+ cores-worth of processing power, as well as several RAID setups. And that’s just the beginning with A2 Hosting’s best dedicated hosting plans. Once you select a combo to start with, it’s time for customization: Memory upgrades, additional solid-state or hard drives, more IPs, and pre-installed applications are all at your disposal. A2 Hosting lets you customize it all and even offers beefy dual-Xeon servers.

A2 Hosting unmanaged servers are Linux-exclusive, but you can pick from several distros like Ubuntu, Fedora, CentOS, and Debian. Each hosting plan comes with certain add-on limitations, so the site has a chart to help guide you through it all. However, absolute beginners won’t find this to be the best dedicated hosting provider, as the choices can get somewhat complicated. What’s more, none of the plans support unlimited bandwidth, thereby defeating the purpose of getting a Linux server with terabytes of storage space. It’s a hosting solution for websites that need plenty of storage without generating too much traffic, but this is still a major disadvantage.

Pricing is on point, though, starting just below that magical $100 threshold if you get an annual plan – a great deal for all the hardware you’re getting. On the other hand, the add-ons mentioned in this dedicated server hosting review can make the price stack up pretty quickly. It’s very easy to get carried away – A2 Hosting is great, but it’s not for the faint of heart (or wallet). This is a hosting solution aimed at professionals, so if you’re looking for powerful servers, look no further than A2.

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4. Bluehost

" Best Budget Servers "

  • CPU:
    4 cores
  • RAM:
    4 -16G B
  • Storage:
    500 MB to 1 TB
  • Bandwidth:
    Up to 15 TB/month
  • Server Type:
    Unmanaged

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Reliable servers
  • Great management tools
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Basic offer

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Reliable servers
  • Great management tools
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Basic offer
  • CPU:
    4 cores
  • RAM:
    4 -16G B
  • Storage:
    500 MB to 1 TB
  • Bandwidth:
    Up to 15 TB/month
  • Server Type:
    Unmanaged

Bluehost is one of the largest hosting companies in the world. Since its founding in 2003, this Utah-based provider has grown to host more than 2 million websites and is now considered the best dedicated server hosting by many people. With good reason – Bluehost offers some of the best deals for powerful hardware.

Some hosting providers scare away their customers with needlessly complicated dedicated hosting plans and hardware setups. Owners of Bluehost have, instead, created three plans, and each is an interesting value proposition. They are all based on how fast a CPU and how much RAM you need: All servers include a 4-core CPU, with processing power ranging from 2.3 GHz to 3.3 GHz. Compared to the offers from other top dedicatedserverhosting companies, this might not sound that enticing. However, Bluehost aims its services primarily at newbies and people that want hassle-free hosting plans. The plans cannot be further customized either, but they are nonetheless a good value proposition.

Every hosting plan entails one free domain name for a full year, an SSL certificate, and root access. These are unmanaged Linux servers, so experienced users will welcome the free rein. A custom-made control panel lets you quickly manage your databases and log files, as well as any other features, like VPS or additional cheap dedicated servers. If you opt for one of its solutions, you can rest assured that Bluehost will take your security very seriously. You can opt for SiteLock protection against malware for your websites, while a different tool guards your sites against identity theft and copycats. Bluehost also offers a set of SEO tools and Codeguard as paid add-ons during checkout.

Price-savvy server managers should look into this company, as it offers a very affordable variety of plans, even with premium add-ons included. Even its best dedicated hosting plan won’t run you much more than $100 a month, especially if you sign up for a 36-month billing cycle. No other hosting provider can offer such a good deal on dedicated servers.

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5. Hostwinds

" Best Dedicated Hosting Server for Gaming "

  • CPU:
    4-6 cores
  • RAM:
    4-96 GB
  • Storage:
    1-3 TB HDD, up to 8 TB SSD
  • Bandwidth:
    10 TB/month to unmetered
  • Server Type:
    Managed

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Fair hardware pricing
  • Great storage options
  • Highly customizable servers
  • Overpriced bandwidth

Things we liked / disliked:

  • Fair hardware pricing
  • Great storage options
  • Highly customizable servers
  • Overpriced bandwidth
  • CPU:
    4-6 cores
  • RAM:
    4-96 GB
  • Storage:
    1-3 TB HDD, up to 8 TB SSD
  • Bandwidth:
    10 TB/month to unmetered
  • Server Type:
    Managed

Hostwinds is the youngest company we reviewed today, but that doesn’t mean it can’t compete with the big names in this business. As a matter of fact, this Tulsa-based provider may be just the solution you need. It offers some of the best customization options and plenty of tools to deliver the best dedicated game server hosting to you. Don’t let the 90s-inspired design of this platform turn you off – this is a modern company.

As always, we’ll start with the hardware once-over. Instead of coming up with mysterious plan names, Hostwinds lets you choose your CPU right off the bat and bases the rest of the plan around that. Pick the exact model, frequency, and number of cores the selected CPU runs with. It also offers tons of storage space and up to 96 GB of RAM, which is why it could be the best dedicated hosting service for you. To be fair, we’re not quite sure how many websites and game servers you’d need to fire up at the same time to even come close to using up all that, but it’s nice to have the option. Some of the plans offer RAID setups for up to 8 drives, letting you mix and match hard and solid-state drives in RAID0, RAID1, even RAID10.

You can choose between Linux and Windows servers in multiple distros or versions. The initial bandwidth with the best game server hosting on Hostwinds is limited to 10 TB a month, but you can upgrade it and even choose an unmetered plan if you have some extra money. The number of allotted IP addresses goes from 8 IPs to 128, ideal for gaming. These are fully managed servers, so the Hostwinds team monitors them 24/7 and immediately informs you of anything noteworthy. A fully-automated nightly backup system is in place for extra security.

Considering all the features included, these are also very affordable dedicated servers. None of the plans cost less than $100 a month, but specific CPU, RAM, and bandwidth combinations ensure you won’t go too far over that. That being said, upping the bandwidth gets expensive fairly quickly: An unlimited plan bumps up the price by a whopping $750. Meanwhile, storage add-ons raise the price only slightly, so Hostwinds remains a good choice even if you have a wealth of files to host. And since games, for example, don’t generate massive amounts of traffic, it could still be the best hosting for a dedicated server.

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Our Methodology for Identifying the Best Dedicated Servers

Server Resources

This is the most important criterion for choosing between server providers. Though we may be purchasing it for a limited time, a dedicated server is a piece of hardware like any other, and one that has the potential to make or break our website at that.

There are three critical components to a server: First up is the Central Processing Unit (CPU), like in your regular computer. Since most hosts use Intel Xeon processors, your primary focus should be on the number of cores and the computing power they possess. The next crucial feature of the best dedicated hosting providers is ample RAM. It’s simple: You want as much RAM as possible, especially if you’re planning on hosting a multitude of websites or running a game server. Most dedicated game servers pack at least 16 GB of RAM. 

Last but not least is the type of storage. SSD storage is vastly superior to old-fashioned hard drives, especially in terms of access speed. We give providers a higher rating if they use SSDs exclusively.

Scalability is another aspect we considered in our dedicated server hosting reviews. The hardware combinations offered, customization options, and configuration flexibility all play a significant role in evaluating any provider. You should be able to choose components from both ends of the pricing spectrum. And if the host lets you change specific hardware at any point in your contract, without tying you down to the initial option you subscribed for, more power to them.

Storage

Online servers always entail a pre-set amount of storage space. You’ll never get the “unlimited storage” offered by shared hosting companies. When you rent dedicated servers, you rent a physical piece of hardware, including a storage drive that can only be expanded so far. Server space is crucial, and picking a plan that’s low on storage will drastically limit what you can do, as well as needing more frequent cache-clearing, etc.

Allotted monthly traffic is important, too. Intended server use determines precisely how much you’ll need, but it’s a good rule of thumb to have at least ten times as much bandwidth as you have storage space. Anything beyond that is a welcome bonus.

Software and Tools

The best dedicated server hosting for websites needs to offer root access, support for PHP, SQL, and many other scripts, and either Linux or Windows as the OS. The latter is usually superior since some apps require Windows installed.

Don’t forget about server management, either. Experienced users might prefer to save some money with an unmanaged server, but if you’re not eager to spend time on setting up everything yourself, better not opt for this. Ideally, a hosting company will cater to people who just want to rent a dedicated server and appear on Google search right away and experts who prefer to customize their scripts.

Price

We take extra care to analyze and compare server prices. Dedicated servers are usually the most expensive hosting option, so it pays to inspect the features thoroughly to find saving opportunities. We also look into the available discounts – if there are any – and try to find the hosting plans that present the best value for our readers.

Customer Service

Great hosting is worth a lot, but even the best dedicated server hosting won’t do you much good without proper customer support when there’s a hiccup. Even the most expensive, high-end computers break, traffic slows down, issues will arise sooner or later, no matter how good a site-manager you are. When that happens, you’ll want to get a hold of someone from the hosting company as soon as possible to resolve things quickly. To help with that, we look for dedicated server providers with 24/7 customer service.

The Best Dedicated Hosting Services

  1. HostGator
  2. DreamHost
  3. A2 Hosting
  4. Bluehost
  5. Hostwinds

FAQ

Is a dedicated server worth it?

You and your needs decide the worth of a dedicated server. Dedicated servers usually come with triple-digit monthly costs, but, in most cases, the needs of someone contemplating switching to dedicated hosting already exceed the resources of shared hosting plans. It all boils down to finances: If your website or live service is bringing you more than what you’ll end up spending on a server, then it’s an excellent choice to upgrade to the best hosting possible.

What is better, dedicated server hosting or cloud hosting?

Both options have pros and cons. A cloud-hosting solution would better suit companies that don’t need extensive server customization. Cloud hosting is also easily scalable, so you can quickly switch to a higher plan to accommodate a sudden surge of traffic. On the other hand, purchasing a dedicated server is a must if you plan to run PHP, Python, or Java code, and it’s the only option for hosting a game server. Both kinds of hosting are great – you just have to know what you’re going to do with a server.

Why are dedicated servers so expensive?

Having a dedicated server doesn’t come cheap, primarily because this isn’t a shared service. The rented server and its respective storage and computing power will be yours and yours alone. Therefore, you’re paying for that exclusivity. Most dedicated server hosts will offer you unmanaged solutions, letting users install and modify the software on a dedicated server to their needs. However, you can switch to managed servers too. All this variety requires a veritable treasure trove of hardware options and support staff; it’s also why there’s no such thing as free dedicated server hosting.

What can I do with a dedicated server?

Most people get a dedicated server so they can host their websites securely. A dedicated server is unmatched as a hosting solution in terms of stability, too. If you run a gaming community, you can use a dedicated server to host a game server, so your people have a place to play 24/7. Other standard dedicated server uses include acting as VPN points, messaging solutions, and data syncing. 

Where can I host a server?

We highly recommend any company from the selection we reviewed on this best dedicated server hosting list. These providers are the most reputable of the bunch, offer great value and the highest-end hardware you’ll find. Be sure to read our reviews to figure out which of these hosting plans is best suited for you.

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