There are many different website hosting options. Common options include Shared hosting, VPS hosting, and dedicated servers. However, for projects that require a huge amount of resources, these options simply aren’t enough. For those, you need something like the cloud storage offered by Linode. Our Linode block storage review takes a look at what this plan offers and discusses why you may need it.
- It’s very easy to expand server space thanks to how flexible block storage is.
- Data is backed up so it’s always available even if one server goes down.
- Linode blocks can be managed independently of each other. Changing them does not require a reboot.
- Linode uses very fast hard drives.
- Storage space can be purchased as needed.
- Because it’s not a standard type of server space, there is a learning curve.
- May not necessarily be the right option for some needs.
- Data can be at risk if you don’t have a security expert handling things.
Linode Block Storage Review & Analysis
The biggest challenge you may face when trying to decide if this option is right for you is fully understanding what block storage is. It’s a very different type of hosting, and it’s not for everyone. If you’ve used other web hosting options in the past and found them lacking, however, you may want to consider Linode block storage.
Who This Hosting Plan is For
- Applications that are too resource-intensive for regular hosting.
- Projects that have very unique needs.
- Any data that needs to be quickly retrieved and needs to always be available.
Who This Hosting Plan is Not For
- Standard websites, even large eCommerce sites.
- Anyone who is not knowledgeable about block storage or willing to learn.
- Projects that don’t need the flexibility or specialization that block storage provides.
The bottom line is that Linode block storage is a great solution for very particular needs. It’s certainly not the option for everyone or even most people who need web hosting. However, if you need the flexibility, speed, and other benefits of block storage, it’s worth looking at what Linode has to offer. It’s even helpful to check out their options even if you’re not sure if block storage is the right move. It may help you better understand what your own project needs.
Linode Block Storage Features
- Easily Add Storage Capacity
- Manage Your Data Independently
- Resilient and Fault Tolerant
- High-Speed Storage
- Full-featured API
- Boot from a Block Storage Volume
- Add Volumes to Your Configuration Profile
- Block Storage Volumes Look Like Local Disks
- Hot-Plug Volumes into and out of Running Linodes
- Volume Cloning
Linode Block Storage Prices
What is Block Storage?
If you’re not an IT person, you likely aren’t familiar with the term block storage. It’s a method of storing data on cloud servers. The way this data is stored is different from how files are normally saved to a hard drive or a cloud of servers. Block storage is more efficient and can be accessed very quickly. It’s also very reliable, so data is very rarely lost.
Like the term suggests, this method breaks data up into small blocks of information. Each of these blocks is given a unique identifier and is then stored in whatever location is the most efficient. Blocks can be saved on different servers in the cloud. They can even be saved on different operating systems and environments. The data can be retrieved in multiple different ways, allowing the system to pick the fastest option each time. The data is then reassembled and sent to the user.
How Does Block Storage Differ from File Storage and Object Storage?
File storage is the standard way of saving files on a computer. Files are stored in folders and directories and can easily be viewed and retrieved. However, there’s only one way to retrieve each file. This is a slower process than block storage. There are also only certain protocols that can be used, such as the Windows NTFS method or Linux’s NFS method. These methods can’t be mixed, which further decreases the benefits of file storage.
When it comes to block storage vs object storage, the best option is less obvious. Object storage does break up data into small pieces (objects) that can be saved in various places. Object storage actually allows you to add more metadata to each object that gives more information about it. For example, the metadata attached to a photo might include where the picture was taken and what it’s an image of. Block storage doesn’t include this extra metadata. Both object storage and block storage have their pros and cons. The right option really depends on what type of data is being saved.
Linode Block Storage Review
Linode’s block storage hosting offers incredibly fast data retrieval speeds. It’s also an incredibly flexible plan. You can add more storage easily, increasing the amount of space you have at any time. Their cloud system makes use of 3x data replication, which creates multiple pathways to your data. You also manage your data yourself. You can move data between different block storage volumes whenever you want. Data isn’t lost if you delete volumes, either. Instead, you move it to another.
As far as pricing goes, Linode is very affordable. Hosting begins at $1 a month for 10 GiB, which is a Gibibyte. A Gibibyte is a measurement used in data processing and transmission. One GiB is 1024 to the third power, while one GB is 1000 to the third. A GiB, then, is more than a GB. Every 10 GiB is priced at $1, and you can add up to 10240 GiB to your plan if your budget allows. This is different from many options such as Cloudways hosting plan since these plans aren’t always as flexible.
Is Block Storage Right for Your Needs?
Now that the question of what is block storage has been answered, it’s time to decide if it’s right for you. Linode’s block storage is designed for tasks that require a large amount of processing power and data retrieval. Standard websites, even large eCommerce sites, typically don’t need what Linode offers. Their block storage plans also don’t include easy-to-use control panels or other pre-configured settings. Instead, you’re in control of everything. This is great if you have very specific settings you need for your projects. It’s not so great if you aren’t familiar with Linux or have a server administrator on your team.
Linode also requires you to configure your own security. If you’re comfortable with this, you can create a customized security solution. However, if you’re not, your data may be at risk. You can always hire a server security expert, but that’s yet another expense. The costs quickly add up. If you don’t need this type of server, there’s no reason to spend so much.
Projects That Can Use Block Storage
There are some tasks that block storage is ideal for. The fast processing times are great for Bitcoin processing via BTCPay or other WordPress plugins. Processing Bitcoins requires a large amount of resources and time. The servers are given a very, very complex mathematical equation to solve. Standard computers or even servers would take a very long time to complete these equations. Without this, however, cryptocurrency wouldn’t exist.
Another use of block storage is chat and video conference hosting. When you have hundreds or even thousands of people streaming and sharing video at once, it can easily overload a standard server. Any server that is streaming or hosting a large amount of video content is going to need to need more than what something like a Hostinger hosting plan can offer.
Is Linode the Right Option?
There are a few other services that offer block level storage. Digital Ocean isn’t as strong in the security department, but they do make it very easy to expand your resources. Another option, Upcloud, has faster servers than Linode and Digital Ocean. Linode has better features, though.
All of these services can provide you with what you need, but overall, Linode is consistently better across the board. They’re not the fastest or the easiest to expand, but they’re not bad in either category. They can provide you with a solid server for your large projects while keeping your costs manageable.