Choosing the best server OS (Operating System) is easy when you have all the necessary information. We’re going to start from the beginning and share essential information about all types of operating systems. So whether you have a business or just want to increase your technical knowledge, this article is for you.
What is the Difference Between an Operating System and a Server Operating System?
Server computers all run on a specifically designed server operating system. The best server OS has advanced features and capabilities primarily used within a client-server/enterprise architecture.
The best server OS is one that can handle running multi-user computer programs, such as critical computing programs. Server OS is software for exchanging information between computers through a web server, such as HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol). HTTP holds important data such as text and image files from websites. When someone searches for a web address, the server suggests the requested pages to the client.
Think of a server operating system as a platform for carrying out different types of computing operations.
How to Choose the Best Server OS?
Aside from hardware requirements, such as storage capacity and multiple processors, you must consider some key factors to find the best server OS, including:
- Your budget
- The applications included in the software
- Security measures
- Scalability schemes
- Administrative tools
The key thing to remember when searching for the best server OS is how user-friendly it actually is. About the applications, be sure to check if your chosen server operating system is equipped to satisfy your computing needs without the aid of third-party programs.
The next essential step is to check the server’s security protocol. The last thing you’d want is to get attacked by vicious hacking programs. So it’s best to consider opting for a dedicated server to enhance protection. Some companies even prefer to use one server to handle incoming mail and another to handle outgoing mail. It all comes down to your needs and the amount of money you want to spend.
What are the Most Popular Server Operating Systems?
There are five common types of server operating systems:
Linux Server 🥇
If the topic is best operating system for server, Linux is definitely at the front of the line. There was a time when UNIX based operating system called Linux was the best server OS because it was a time-sharing operating system that supported small computers. Linux dates back to 1991 and is an excellent web server with many popular qualities, such as:
- Free to use
- Open Source
- Multi-user support
- Multi-processor support
- Real-time performance
- Practical application software, including a text editor and a high-level language compiler
Hat Enterprise Linux is probably the most popular, reliable, and the best Linux server OS.
Microsoft Windows Servers🥈
Microsoft Windows servers have been around for a long time now, starting with Windows NT and Windows Server 2016, the most current Windows Server version. The best thing about Windows Server 2016 is that it supports a hypervisor that allows virtual servers. Windows 2000 and Windows 2003 are mainly network operating systems. Many consider the Windows operating system the best server OS because of its unique file and file management system. Other advantages that come with Windows servers are:
- Symmetric multi-processor systems support
- large-capacity memory management
- Excellent security (network-wide security management)
Cloud servers are basically virtual servers hosted on a third-party infrastructure on an open network. Amazon’s AWS platform, Google’s Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure, and IBM Cloud provide cloud servers. Perhaps one of the best cloud servers is Amazon’s AWS platform. With AWS (Amazon Web Services), clients can create a virtual server with adjustable resources.
Cloud-based servers advantages are:
- Easy access and use
- Enhanced security against data loss
- multi-server approach
- Data Backups
- Enhanced application performance
UNIX Operating System
This server operating system is written in the C language, which is a huge plus because the C language abbreviation supports different platforms.
Other key features of UNIX are:
- Multi-user support
- Open-source software
The UNIX operating system is quite popular at the moment. UNIX comes in different versions that are similar and incompatible with each other.
NetWare Operating System
In the old days, the NetWare operating system was considered the best server OS. This particular server had a dedicated server in the network, which had its advantages in the early client-server years, such as:
- Multi-processor support
- Large-capacity physical memory management
- Basic printing functions
- Scalability schemes for corporate networks, including open standards and file protocols
NetWare is now named Novell Open Enterprise Server (OES), a Linux-based kernel.
Why is Operating System Important?
The operating system is in charge of allocating the I/O device, memory, CPU, and file storage resources to specific programs to perform clients’ tasks as quickly as possible. The best server OS is one that can manage the resources of a computer system internally. However, suppose someone does not use these servers correctly. In that case, it might have a massive negative economic impact, especially with complex systems.
The best server OS is software that manages a computer’s essential resources, software, and hardware. The operating system enables users to use computers without having to know the computer’s language, so it acts like a translator for users.
How Does an Operating System Work?
Suppose you, as the user, want to complete a task or run an application on your computer; the operating system is your point of connection with your computer’s hardware.
The operating system manages different functions, such as resource management, I/O operations, and security protocols.
In simple words, the best server OS enables users to use computers efficiently, even if they are not tech-savvy at all.
How to Choose the Best Server OS for Small Business?
Choosing the best server for a small business can be quite challenging, especially if you have no experience in this area. In this section, we covered practical tips so you can find the best server OS based on your budget.
What is your primary goal of having a business server?
If you want to find the best server OS, you must first list your needs carefully. These are some of the common uses of business servers:
- Storing and sharing files (essential for data protection)
- Domain-specific email client
- Web hosting (Ensures availability and accessibility of your content to users-raises your ranking in search engines-Improves your website’s speed and efficiency)
- Hosting an e-commerce store (Ensures secure and efficient commercial transactions)
- Creating a virtual server (enhances remote work efficiency by providing virtual desktops)
- Cloud backup ( ensures data storage security)
Figuring out exactly what you need from a business server enables you to spot the best server OS on the market. Make sure you list your future requirements as well for when you decide to expand your business.
How much workload are you expecting from your business server?
Workload capacity is dependent on the hard drive, processors, and RAM capability. Suppose you don’t have a clear idea about your business workload. In that case, you can research similar businesses to yours and find out which server OS they are using. It might be the best server OS you can use for your business, so do thorough research.
Do you prefer an On-premise or Off-premise server?
Having an on-premise server means you will be responsible for everything, managing and maintaining all services, not to mention training staff to use everything properly. Aside from the immense workload, choosing an on-premise server can cost you a lot. So if you run a small business, opting for a cloud/off-premise server might be a better option.
The best thing about an off-premise server is that you have 24/7 access to on-demand service over the internet. As for expanding your business over time, cloud servers are definitely the best server OS.
What type of server do you want?
In general, there are three popular types of servers you can choose from; dedicated servers, virtual servers, and Cloud servers.
A dedicated server has all the essentials you need to manage your small business, including RAM, processor, hard drive, and operating system. The best and most important advantage that comes with dedicated servers is security. Since there are no shared resources, none of your data is at risk, and you have 100% control over your server.
The beauty of virtual servers is that they are super-efficient, utilizing one hardware to offer multiple virtual machines. This type of server is a great option for those who want to have separate servers for different parts of their business. You can use CPU, RAM, network, and disk to create multiple virtual environments to cater to your business needs. Virtual servers are cost-effective, and you can manage every aspect of your business faster. Time and money saved, what could be better?
If you want a server that provides on-demand services 24/7, cloud servers are the best option. The best server OS for small businesses is cost-effective, offers 24/7 support, is fast and secure, and reliable; cloud servers offer all of these. The best part is that you can choose a cloud server that suits your budget; public, private, and hybrid clouds.
Also, you don’t have to worry about backup or storage issues with cloud servers.
Here is a list of Best Server OS for Small Business:
|Windows Small Business Server||
|Linux Ubuntu Server||
||Free (Paid version: $25-$1500)|
|Red Hat Enterprise Linux||
Best Linux Server OS 2022
If you are a fan of Windows servers like most people, we encourage you to read this section as you might change your mind by the end. It’s worth mentioning that the best OS for web server is Linux.
There are many Linux distributors on the market, so we understand that choosing the best server OS can be a difficult process.
Below is a list of the best Linux server OS you can choose from:
|Product||24/7 Support||Unique Advantages||Price Range|
|Ubuntu Server||Yes (Paid version)||
||Free (Paid version: $25-$1500)|
||Free (Paid version: $47-$11,190)|
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Tips for Choosing the Best OS for Web Server
The best server OS can be both Linux and Windows Server OS, depending on your individual needs. However, the best OS for web sevrer is Linux OS. There are fundamental differences between Windows servers and Linux servers. The best thing we can do is list these differences so you can make the best decision.
You might think that your server’s performance depends only on its hardware, but the fact is that the server OS can affect it significantly as well.
Linux is an open-source OS that doesn’t need many resources for running system applications compared to Windows OS. So if you want to protect your hardware’s stability, the best server OS to use would be Linux.
The best OS for the web server is one that can provide optimal security at all times. Both Linux and Windows OS are highly secured, but Linux offers better overall security as an open-source OS. The reason is that any security flaw or software bug can be easily discovered and fixed.
Open-source OS means developers have easy access to the server. That means developers can fix any bug in Linux OS quickly by releasing a software update. Regular updates enhance and improve user experience, a considerable advantage of Linux OS.
Windows is not open-source, meaning only Microsoft employees can release updates which often takes a long time.
Linux OS is free, but Windows Server OS comes with a non-free license which has its advantages. So if you are on a tight budget, Linux OS is the best budget-friendly option.
What is the Best OS for VPS?
As technology advances, it has become critical for almost all businesses to adapt to these new changes. One of the best tools that all organizations can use to their advantage is VPS hosting. Now choosing the best OS for VPS can be quite challenging. The most important factors you need to consider are your budget and your business’s priorities and needs.
The best OS for VPS can be one of these options based on your particular needs:
- Windows (Advantage: Superior compatibility with programs)
- Linux (Advantage: Open-source- Free)
There are many Linux-based operating systems you can choose from:
Linux Vs. Windows OS; Last Tip
If you haven’t decided between a Linux hosting and Windows hosting yet, here’s another helpful fact. The most important difference between these two is the database languages. So, for example, if you plan on adding specific Windows applications to your website, including .NET or ASP languages or Visual Basic, you must choose Windows Os. If you’re looking for a simple and user-friendly OS, go with the Linux operating system.
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What are the basic features of Operating Systems?
- Memory Management
- Processor Management
- Device Management
- File Management
- I/O Management
- Security Management
What is the best server OS for business?
Microsoft Windows Server, Ubuntu Server, CentOS Server, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server.
What is the best server OS for a home server?
Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, and OpenSuse.
What are the main roles in the Windows Server?
- Active Directory Lightweight Directory Services (ADLDS)
- Active Directory Rights Management Services (ADRMS)
- Application Server
- Active Directory Certificate Services (ADCS)
- Active Directory Domain Services (ADDS)
- DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) Server
- DNS (Domain Name System) Server
What does RAID mean in Windows Server?
RAID is short for Redundant Array of Independent Disks. RAID’s purpose is to store the same data in a different place, resulting in storage capacity expansion.
Do Network Operating systems and Distributed Operating systems operate the same?
No. Although they have similar hardware, their software is completely different.
What is a thread in OS and how does multithreading work?
A thread refers to the smallest series of programmed instructions that a part of the operating system can manage. There is a difference between a thread and a process; a thread is a process component. Multithreading happens when multiple threads of a given process may be executed concurrently.