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How to find (and reduce) your Server Maintenance Cost

If you have an online business, you’ll need a server.

And we know servers can be expensive to own an operate. But are you spending more than you really need to?

The reality is that many server owners lose money due to unnecessary hardware redundancy, unopotimized services, and more.

Today, we’ll take a look at the visible and hidden costs of maintaining a server, and how to cut down the costs.


What are the costs of owning a server?

For the purpose of this article, let’s assume that you want to host an eCommerce website and run an email server for your business.

The most popular solution for this requirement is to use a 4-core, 4 GB server either as a VPS, dedicated server or a cloud instance.

Now, let’s see how much this will cost you every month.


1. Hardware costs

There are 3 ways in which you can get a server:

  • On-premise servers which you’ll put in your office with all associated facilities like A/C, security, etc.
  • Buy a server, and put it a co-located facility, where the space will be provided by a data center.
  • Rent a server, and forget about hardware replacements, power usage, etc.

Most business owners choose the 3rd option and rent a server.

This can range anywhere from $150 to $250 depending on your configuration (RAID, SSD, IPs, etc.).

Let’s take the average value, that is $200/month.

This cost will include utility expenses such as electricity, bandwidth, space, etc. If you use a co-located server, you’ll have to pay $150/month for those facilities on top of the cost of your server amortized over several months.


2. Software licenses

Software licenses can cost most than hardware itself.

For instance, SQL servers can cost you $7500/year or $619 per month.

If we get into propretary software licenses, there would be no end to the cost calculations, as licensing is quite complex in many of these software suits.

So, we’ll stick to open source software for the most part.

Even so, you’ll probably buy an adminsitration suit and an anti-virus subscription, which can cost up to $50/month.

Of course, there are always completely free and open source alternatives which you can get it setup for $120 one time cost using Bobcares server administration services.


3. Server monitoring & management

From malware infections to hardware errors, there are a lot that can go wrong in a server.

To prevent it, you’ll need to monitor your servers 24/7 and make timely updates and patches.

Here you have many options:

Let’s assume you are comfortable taking care of backups, optimization, and other un-common issues, and you only need someone to monitor and patch your servers.

Then your management cost will be $70/month.


Total cost per month

That will take the total nominal server maintenance cost to $320/month.

This is the basic minimum you need to run an eCommerce shop using open source software as much as possible.

Based on your work load, business type and kind of software used, this estimate can go well beyond $5000/server/month. But the splitup given here can serve as a basis for estimating your server maintenance cost.

If you need help identifying the most economical server solution, it is always best to consult an independent server management company such as Bobcares that’s not associated with any hardware or software vendors.

In that way, you can be sure that the solution will be un-biased and professional. Click here to talk to our server expert.


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Bobcares is a server management company that helps businesses deliver uninterrupted and secure online services. Our engineers manage close to 51,500 servers that include virtualized servers, cloud infrastructure, physical server clusters, and more.