What is the Difference between a Linux and Windows Dedicated Server?

When choosing a dedicated server, hosting companies usually provide two operating systems (OS) that come with the server: Linux and Windows. Dedicated servers consist of hardware with particular configurations where the OS is installed and the server features vary according to the type of OS it has. You know that you need dedicated hosting to host your websites, but you may not be aware of the type of OS you need to accommodate your server’s needs.

The information provided below will help you gain insight on Linux vs Windows hosting for your dedicated server.

linux & windows dedicated server



Linux is a preferred operating system for a dedicated server because it is an open-source system that is cheap to install. It is more cost-effective to run and maintain, which means that this type of OS will cost you less than Windows. Linux is known for achieving stability and speedy performance, where it runs on most processes faster and crashes less than what you get from Windows. If you run PHP, PERL, Java or MYSQL scripts, then Linux is the viable option.

The only disadvantage when it comes to Linux is that you will not be able to install some of the Windows applications due to lack of compatibility.

  • Security

With Linux, the source code is accessible to everyone to develop and improve. Due to this reason, Linux codes have been improved, and even if hackers take a stab at it, upgraded codes have been added with security features.

Nevertheless, this isn’t the only reason why Linux is more secure than Windows. Linux is not prone to most viruses compared to Windows OS. These viruses can cause damage to your data and can potentially harm the system. However, the only drawback to Linux’s security features is that it’s slightly difficult to install some of the security applications on the system.

  • Usage

While it may not be very difficult to use Linux, it can be a bit tricky to use it at first because it requires familiarity of some of the commands. But once you get used to it, you can develop it and it will become better in terms of usage because of the easy interface. There’s CPanel graphical interface and Webmin configuration tool to give you more control of your server and website.



Windows is also a popular operating system for dedicated hosting because it provides an easy interface. What sets Windows apart from Linux is that they can run Microsoft software applications such as Access and MS SQL databases. Additionally, Windows servers come with Microsoft’s programming environments such as Visual Basic (VB) Scripts, Active Server Pages (ASP), and MS Index Server.

  • Security

Windows has its vulnerabilities and known for being affected by viruses. Yet, security applications programmed by Microsoft are easy to install. As an added benefit, you can find some applications being offered are part of the security standards of Windows OS to ensure your dedicated hosting is sufficiently protected.

  • Usage

Managing a dedicated server is as simple as handling your local machine with Windows OS because of the simple interface installed on the server. You can develop your websites using familiar Microsoft tools such as Visual Interdev and FrontPage, and build a database-driven e-commerce website using Microsoft SQL and MS Access as the database.

Ultimately, it is ideal to select affordable dedicated servers based on their features and services, and not focus too much on what OS is running since there is only a slight difference between Linux and Windows. However, if your website needs a specific language required by programmers and webmasters you work with, it would be key to check for system compatibility before subscribing to a dedicated hosting provider.



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