On Premise, Bare Metal and Dedicated: What are the differences?

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Choosing the right type server is an important step in ensuring the success of your business or project. It’s also a step that entails dealing with incredibly confusing and sometimes contradictory information. Do I need a dedicated server, a bare metal server or on premise? What do these terms mean and what are the differences between them? You’d be forgiven for losing your way as even large hosting websites use these terms somewhat loosely. This article aims to tidy up the terms and clarify what the precise differences are and why they may matter to you.


Dedicated servers are a term also widely used to describe both on premise, and bare metal servers. Let’s clear this up! A dedicated server is a set of server hardware that you rent out exclusively. This means that all your data, websites, applications and processes running on a physically distinct set of devices. You don’t share any memory, bandwidth, or computing power with any other party. In the truest sense of the word the infrastructure is entirely dedicated to you and your needs. This is different from Cloud hosting plans for example, as while dedicated servers are also in the cloud, they are physically a specific and finite hardware resource and not a scalable range of server allocation based on hardware virtualization.

Dedicated servers are especially useful for businesses that have higher bandwidth requirements and need more power than is available on a shared solution. Important to note is that a dedicated server is not virtual, that is to say that the physical infrastructure is at your digital fingertips and can be completely configured to your needs.

Bare metal

Bare metal servers are, just as dedicated servers, a set of physical hardware dedicated to you and not shared with anyone else. Bare metal servers however are usually equipped with the latest and greatest in technology and hardware. They are the prize horse or flagship of a hosting provider. You can expect blazing fast CPU’s and SSD’s, spared no expense.

Some hosting providers also distinguish their bare metal and dedicated servers by providing their dedicated solutions with a pre-installed virtualization layer or Hypervisor. In this case bare metal servers do not come with a hypervisor or pre-installed virtualization layer and instead allow you, the user, to deploy your own hypervisors.

On Premise

On-premise servers are an entirely different beast. In this case a business purchases, maintains and upgrades its own server hardware by itself. grations, backups and hardware upgrades. Companies who run their own dedicated servers on premise need a robust IT team that can respond to technical failures and maintain a complex system of hardware and software. A cheap investment this is not! On premise is also one of the oldest approaches, as before the cloud and faster broadband speeds they were the only viable option for companies needing a robust dedicated server. Thanks to the hyperspeed of technological development, even enterprise consumers now have a choice.

Hypernode Managed Dedicated Hosting

At Hypernode we take a hybrid approach to dedicated hosting, with our Managed Dedicated Hosting solution. A dedicated setup is complex and requires a lot of time, and resources to configure and set up. While that can be economical for some, not every business needs or wants to micromanage every aspect of the hosting environment. Yet they often still do need the performance that a dedicated solution provides.

Our approach is to deliver powerful dedicated servers with the flexibility and room to grow, while allowing you fully focus on your webshop. You don’t have to worry about software updates and server configurations. We manage this for you and proactively think along about the performance and security of your webshop.

Hi! My name is Dion, Account Manager at Hypernode

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