Linux or Windows Based Hosting Server for WordPress?

Due to its powerful features and user-friendliness, WordPress has become the first choice of bloggers. If you are a blogger and want to start your blogging journey with WordPress.org, or if you want to build your business website using this great CMS, then you need to purchase a hosting for your project.

At present, two OS types are most popular which empower servers. One is the Microsoft’s Windows and second is the Linux. Although OS doesn’t matter a lot for the performance of a static HTML website, but when it comes to host WordPress, you need to be choosy and look deeper into the two kinds of servers before getting the one for your project.

HOSTING WORDPRESS – LINUX OR WINDOWS?

Linux is the recommended OS type for WordPress and WordPress performs well on a Linux server. So while purchasing the hosting for your blog or website, go for Linux to ensure that the CMS runs your project smoothly in the long run.

You may ask, why Linux is recommended for hosting WordPress? Below few paragraphs will answer your questions.

Permalinks: Custom permalinks are needed to be configured for better SEO of WordPress, but when you choose a Windows server, custom permalinks don’t work. You need to edit web.config and several other files to get it working, but still the permalinks generate errors when you get them working by configuring complex settings.

On Linux, the entire scenario changes. Custom permalinks work like a charm when WordPress is hosted on a Linux server. You just need to change the permalink structure to one which is best for SEO and the permalinks start working soon after the change from settings. You don’t need to edit any complex files.

linux-or-windows

Would you afford to have a permalink like http://yourblog.com/?p=123? Never! You will always love to have a pretty link for your post like http://yourblog.com/custom-link and only Linux can give you a pretty link like this without taking you through complexities.

Emails: WordPress is powered by PHP and the script behaves differently on the two OS types. When you host your WordPress blog on a Windows server, emails may not be sent properly. On Windows servers, WordPress tries to send the emails via SMTP and this is a slower as well as vulnerable mode of sending emails.

On Linux, PHP processes the emails via Sendmail method by integrating itself with any MTA (Mail Transferring Agent) that processes the email sending with great efficiency. When server is busy or over-loaded, emails are queued and they are sent later.

When I started with WordPress two years back, I was having a hosting account in a Windows server. My users were never receiving the registration confirmation emails nor I was. The server was failing to send emails generated by WordPress, thus I needed to switch my hosting type for this frustrating bug.

Stability: Linux performs well than Windows with similar hardware resources, thus your blog will perform better on a Linux server than one which runs Windows. If you can’t afford a powerful server, then a low-end server may go down frequently for high traffic when you are running Windows on it. On the other hand, if you are running Linux on it, then the performance will go up considerably on the same server with same resources.

Security: Linux is more secure than Windows, thus your important data will be more secure from viruses, malware, spyware and other malicious scripts if it is hosted on a Linux server.

MySQL: WordPress stores all information including post content, page content, comments, plugin and theme settings, user names, passwords and several other details in a MySQL database and MySQL needs powerful resources to work effectively. If your blog receives high traffic, then a server with little resources may suck when it is powered by Windows.

On the other hand, the server will perform well when it is running on Linux. Your blog will never generate server errors like “Internal Server Error”, “Service Temporarily Unavailable” and so on, as your server resources will never get consumed by Linux unnecessarily.

.htaccess: You need to edit .htaccess file in root directory of WordPress sometimes to configure WordPress properly for speed, performance and security. .htaccess file works in Linux and in Windows, its alternative is web.config file which is hard to be edited as well as there are very few tutorials and knowledge available on the Internet to edit web.config file for fixing WordPress related issues.

Conclusion: WordPress has been built for Linux and it performs well on a server running on Linux. When you choose a Windows server to host your WordPress site, then it will suck! So always prefer Linux over Windows to ensure that your site performs well and is always up and running.

A blogger, web developer, and a freelancer from Gilgit-Baltistan Pakistan sharing his experiences with fellow Internet Marketers on this blog.

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