Next Level Ops Podcast: Plesk’s Lukas Hertig Goes Down Memory Lane with Web Hosting

Hello Pleskians! Over the last couple of months we have been busy in the studio preparing the Official Plesk Podcast: Next Level Ops. This week, our Superhost Joe Casabona sits down with Lukas Hertig, a fellow Pleskian of the Highest Order, to discuss 20 years of Plesk and the changing web hosting landscape.

Web Hosting Was Another World Back Then

Retro Computer

It’s the very first episode of the Official Plesk Podcast: Next Level Ops. Joe and Lukas go down memory lane with 20 years of web hosting. The podcast kicks off, Lukas introduces himself and his relationship with Plesk. It’s been a long one, 15 years. Joe takes a deep dive right into history. What did web hosting look like 20 years ago? The two chuckle. Websites were hard to set up and looked ugly. Do Dreamweaver, Frontpage and Geocities ring a bell? “It was like the wild, wild west of websites and hosting.”, says Lukas. Joe solemnly agrees.

“It was like the wild, wild west of websites and hosting.”

Lukas

Key Takeaways

  • Web hosting was much more complicated in 2000 – there was a lot of command line stuff! There were few dynamic websites, a lot of free hosts such as Geocities, Tripod and Angel Fire. But overall, there was much less compliance.
  • The biggest changes in the last years include some gamechangers. Such as the rise of WordPress, Node.js and Ruby. The cloud has changed a lot too, for instance, with services like AWS. And what of performance changes? It used to be simple caching but today the complexity is higher.
  • The future – will it even have web hosting? Possibly there is no web hosting at all. “The Platform”, such as Shopify and Wix will be more important. Technology cycles are already getting shorter, disruptions are happening faster. Hopefully, at least DNS should get better.

…Well, what are you waiting for? Join Joe and Lukas as they take you through the magical transformation of the web hosting landscape. Get ready to stream our first ever Plesk podcast. You can also go directly to Plesk Podcast: Next Level Ops on Simplecast.

The Official Plesk Podcast: Next Level Ops Featuring

Joe Casabona

Joe is a college-accredited course developer. He is the founder of Creator Courses.

Lukas Hertig

Lukas is the SVP Business Development & Strategic Alliances at Plesk.

Remember to update your daily podcast playlist with Next Level Ops. And stay on the lookout for our next episode.

Heads up: Plesk and WebPros speakers at Cloudfest 2020

Cloudfest 2020 - Cancelled - Plesk Sponsor

Cloudfest is by far the most important cloud-computing conference in the world. Over 4 days, 7,000 attendees, 200 exhibitors, and 250 speakers come together to create an unmissable event that celebrates everything new and exciting in tech and innovation. Cloudfest 2020 will explore how the cloud industry is preparing for the AI evolution in technology, oversight, economics, and morality.

Thanks to the stellar line up of newsmakers, influencers, and web experts, it’s sure to inspire top keynotes, game-changing network sessions, and legendary parties. We’ll be attending Cloudfest as a sponsor with a booth (G33) along with the whole Web Pros team. Plesk CTO Jan Loeffler, Director of Program Management Sergey Egorov, and Senior Program Manager Andy Kugaevskiy will deliver highly-anticipated talks. Moreover, we will have special Plesk certifications happening thanks to Ivan Butorin  – Plesk education expert, and Roman Basalyko – support expert.

Sergey Egorov Talks About Plesk Obsidian

Sergey’s talk will explore the importance of a lightweight SaaS experience for staying relevant and competitive in every stage of a web project. It will be perfect for those interested in what Plesk can offer them in terms of SaaSification.

Future of Hosting and Cloud Management – Jan Loeffler (with Todd Mitchell)

Jan will be speaking alongside COO and WebPros expert Todd Mitchell, about the Future Vision of Hosting & Cloud Management: How WebPros can help your business reach maximum growth. This talk is the one for you if you want to know how WebPros—a partnership between Plesk, cPanel, XOVI, Solus IO, and WHMCS—can be a game-changer for your business and your future growth.

WordPress Toolkit as a managed WordPress hosting solution is becoming available to all hosters this year. Sr Program Manager, Andrey, is covering WordPress Toolkit’s integration with cPanel and the upcoming market release. You can learn about WordPress Toolkit as a centralized, platform-agnostic, stand-alone product – also coming soon. Plus, upcoming support and integration changes and features to be introduced in version updates this year.

Get Plesk Certified with Ivan Butorin and Roman Basalyko

Thanks to our two Plesk experts, Ivan and Roman, web hosting product/project managers and web professionals will learn to deploy Plesk and provide specialized hosting solutions. And receive a certification as proof. You can check out the full session agenda here. Secure your spot as seats are limited!

ivan-butorin-avatar

Book Your Sessions Now

Cloudfest will be held between March 16-19 in the theme park and resort, Europa Park, in Germany. You can find the full WebPros/CloudFest 2020 Agenda here, along with details of each session and their speakers.

All sessions will be held at the Hotel El Andaluz, Alhambra Meeting Room. You can also use the link to secure your place and register for the talks. We highly recommend doing this sooner rather than later! We look forward to seeing you there as we learn, ask questions and share feedback.

 

We can’t wait for this year’s Cloudfest. Are you attending? Let us know your thoughts below. We hope to see you there for some serious business and some serious fun.

WordPress Community Insights You May Not Know About

WordPress Community Insights You May Not Know - Plesk

Each year, seasoned WordPress developers, agency owners, WebPro experts and beginner users come together at WordCamps. From around the world, we connect, learn, and celebrate all things WordPress. WordCamps have grown from the one held by Matt Mullenweg in 2006, San Francisco – to hundreds all over the globe. Each with their own flavour, speakers, sessions, and communities. It’s only natural that we want to get more WordPress Community Insights.

As we create many WordPress-related products, we’re proudly involved in the community that makes WordPress and make regular appearances at WordCamps. We support WordCamps both with sponsorship and by showing up with a booth, speakers, games, special offers, raffles, and interviews. In November 2019, we attended WordCamp US and joined the thousands of other WP enthusiasts and experts. Celebrating and evolving the thriving WordPress ecosystem, hosting educational and engaging games and raffles with special prizes.

In exchange for the grand prize (that any techy would love), we took the opportunity to gather answers to a few burning questions for the WP community. We collated the responses from over one hundred respondents in the infographic you see below. Now we’re going to dive into these findings in a bit more detail and discuss a few patterns and trends we noticed.

Community Insights from WordCamp US 2019

WordPress is such a diverse and flexible platform that it’s used daily by a million different people in a million different ways. To be exact, there’s over 75 million people using WordPress in over 50 different languages. Powering over 172 million websites (around a third of the entire web). And those numbers are still growing.

So who are the WordPress Community?

From our survey of WordCamp attendees, we discovered that, as you would expect, most of them are developers — nearly half at 42%. The rest are a diverse bunch of bloggers, graphic designers, agency owners, marketers, SEOs, freelancers, security researchers, software developers. There are also prospective dev students or small business owners who are newbies to the WordPress world.

As you can see, there’s a real mix of people using WordPress for everything. From personal projects and their own career development to running businesses and supporting client projects. This is reflected in the reasons as to why people were attending WordCamp US.

Most of the respondents were at the event for both personal and professional reasons. With overall the biggest attraction being the opportunity to network, make connections, and simply have interesting conversations with like-minded people.

Of course, some people were there because they were running a session or because they simply wanted the free swag. But even so, they may have been meeting up with someone they met online or were otherwise benefiting from the strong WP community. Similarly, when we asked what they hope to take away from the weekend, respondents mostly mentioned making new friends, contacts and connections.

Other top takeaways included new knowledge/learning, feedback, contributing to the community and learning new solutions for current WP challenges. Many also want to improve accessibility of websites, or get a clearer idea of hosting options and new features out there. And, of course, grab some swag while they’re at it.

How The Community Uses WordPress

When you get a bunch of WP aficionados together in the same place, you can’t not ask them about their experiences with WordPress and the tools they’re currently using. Starting at the top with hosting options, over a third of people (39%) preferred Managed WordPress Hosting, with Cloud and Shared Hosting following at 17%.

In line with these results is what they voted as the most important factors when working with WordPress. Speed and performance took the crown with nearly two-thirds of the vote. While 45% were happy enough to have WordPress work well. However, 44% also wanted stability, and 36% were looking for a user-friendly design.

With over 50,000 plugins available, the WordPress plugins marketplace is booming. Many look to WordCamp for insights into plugins to announce development of their latest ground-breaking product. Maybe even to improve the efficiency of their sites, or simply discover what’s out there.

Interestingly, SEO plugins like Yoast are the most-used WordPress tools, with 55% of respondents using them over others. Second were analytics tools with 37%, security tools at 31%, and page builders, CSS and email marketing plugins coming up the rear.

This shows a clear focus of WP users to quantify and boost their site performance in search engine results pages (SERPs) as much as possible.

Doing Our Bit For The WordPress Community

To finish off the survey, we asked the WordCamp US attendees a few more questions, including if they had any WP-related goals, and if so, what they were. The results revealed that WordCamps have a feel of being about socialising and educating people. However, they’re also pivotal for those serious about pushing their business goals forward.

Some of the respondents’ top WordPress-related goals were:

  • making their products known to the world
  • growing their WordPress client base
  • becoming web developers
  • blogging more consistently
  • building non-profit websites
  • Building awesome sites in general
  • teaching more
  • Increasing their traffic and scaling
  • Getting all the clients and dominating the world

To help fellow members of the WordPress community to achieve these goals, we’ve built a variety of WordPress tools like the Plesk WordPress Toolkit. The WP Toolkit is a single interface for easily installing, configuring, and managing WordPress, jam-packed with features.

We asked the community if they thought the Plesk Toolkit would benefit their work. Nearly half of respondents chose “yes”, with just under a quarter choosing “I think so.” A few of the things that are holding people back included the price. Some were also not sure if it would integrate well. And a few would not go for it, simply because they don’t like change.

Looking Ahead to The Next WordCamp

Go for the speakers, the opportunities, the insights, the lego prizes, swag – or all of the above. Attending a WordCamp is a great way to meet awesome people and stay in touch with everything WordPress.

There has been over 700 WordCamps in 70 cities around the world to date. We plan to attend more in 2020 to continue supporting the WP community and development of the incredible open source platform. Starting with WordCamp Asia in February. To find a WordCamp near you, or even set up your own, visit WordCamp central.

Will you be attending WordCamp Asia in February 2020? What content would you like to see us cover from the event?

The Truth about Managed vs Unmanaged WordPress Hosting

Unmanaged vs managed WordPress Hosting

Quick Quiz: What Type of WordPress Hosting do you need – Managed vs unmanaged hosting?

1. Are you more of a (a) Do-it-yourself (DIY) type or b) Plug-and-play kind of person?
2. Do you usually (a) go with the flow or (b) need a backup plan?
3. When traveling, do you prefer (a) shared accommodation or (b) space for yourself?
4. Looking at your lifestyle, do you (a) go for the basic stuff or (b) comfort and security

Unmanaged vs Managed WordPress Hosting Verdict

Well, based on the above criteria, Plesk can tell you which type of WordPress user you are – the managed vs unmanaged hosting type. If you mostly picked (a), then you are an unmanaged hosting type, whereas mostly (b) choices reveal your managed WordPress hosting preference.

Disclaimer: There is no right or wrong answer and you’re fine either way. However, having a full perspective can help you make the best business decisions later on. Keep reading for more info on your business needs, the core differences and benefits of the two different hosting types.

Managed Hosting: The Plug & Play Type

Your profile tells Plesk you are part of a managed hosting category for your WordPress. You trust and rely on someone else for your hosting solution, while you focus on your core business. Going deeper, you can choose from the following managed hosting types: a) Shared; b) Cloud; c) Virtual Private Hosting (VPS); d) Dedicated. 

Love Shared Hosting?

This hosting plan is typically the cheapest. Your site shares resources with other accounts on the same server. Shared hosting is a good option as long as website traffic and your end-user base don’t outgrow the server’s resources. The downside is that noisy/resource-hogging neighbors will affect your site as all websites have to share space on the same server.

Scale up to Cloud Hosting

Multiple physical servers work together and the network shares virtual resources. If you choose cloud hosting, it means you want flexibility, resilience, and redundancy. Also, you prefer a pay-as-you-go model. However, for cloud hosting, you need good planning abilities and management skills of this environment.

VPS Hosting Fan?

This means you prefer a virtual instance on a physical server with its copy of an operating system (OS). Plus, your own resources such as CPU, RAM or any other data. You can always add more resources on your plate without the need to migrate your website.

Moreover, you get a similar level of flexibility and benefits as with a dedicated server, but with a shared cost of services. This means almost full freedom. Because you have access to everything and can install any software you want and need. No dependency on traffic or audience.

Your Own Dedicated Hosting

Are you playing in the league of big numbers of visitors? Then dedicated hosting is for you. You probably have an online store with lots of rich media that need to max out on RAM. It’s also the most secure option and provides the highest level of system control.

Therefore, you can keep noisy neighbors out of the picture. However, know that dedicated servers usually come with monthly pricing or some kind of long-term commitment. So you need to think carefully in advance regarding how many resources you’re going to need.

Unmanaged Hosting (DIY) – The Good and The Bad

Based on Plesk analysis, you love being in the ‘techy weeds’. As a DIY type, you prefer to build, configure, maintain and secure your server. While also ensuring that your website is up and performing well. As basic needs’ fulfillment is enough for you, a server with only an Operating System (OS) installed will do. You need to install and configure any additional software such as WordPress, Apache, PHP or MySQL.

Why Unmanaged Hosting Can Be Tricky

If this tips you over between managed vs unmanaged hosting, then you’re dedicated to the tricky craft of managing your website(s) and server. You love it and it costs you almost nothing. However, this may take too much time and keep you away from other more important stuff for your business and growth. Also, you may be saving money now, but in the long run, this may not be as beneficial. Consider this: your site has always been a bit slow to load, but imagine it in two years’ time. When your business and website traffic grow.

Backup plans take too much time and energy for you, but if the worst happens you may pay for it in other ways. For example, after a few days off you find your site compromised and filled with spam links to random websites. Or when something goes wrong with your manual WordPress updated and the website goes down. Constantly having to monitor your site and implement performance and security optimizations may drain you. Thus, possibly crippling your business eventually.

Plesk and WordPress Hosting –  Plug, Play and More

You’ll see many options in the WordPress managed hosting candy shop. So it’s hard to choose. But for the ones who prefer a turnkey solution for their websites, Plesk WordPress Edition with WordPress Toolkit is the right combination.

Watch and see how quick you can activate your WordPress hosting solution with Plesk.

Top Plesk WordPress Hosting Benefits

Especially when compared to shared or VPS providers, this WordPress hosting provides better maintenance and data integrity. According to market benchmarks, data hosting providers offering the ability to change the version of PHP used for WordPress score higher.

24/7 customer support 

Managed WordPress Hosting is intuitive and requires a few clicks installation. But the house’ specialty, the sweet cherry on top of the Plesk’s WordPress Hosting is our customer support. From onboarding to finish, all clients get 24/7 attention from our side, including website support and tech support for non-developers.

Automated WordPress Security, Backups and Upgrades

Another advantage you’ll welcome with open arms is the free WordPress vulnerability scanner when you create a new site. Plesk’s WordPress Toolkit security scanner goes beyond the basics and implements the latest security recommendations and best practices from WP Codex and WP security experts.

Performance and Speed 

Get Plesk with your WordPress Hosting and you’ll have this included in WP-CLI. Thus helping clients import a database, create a new user, update themes and plugins in a flash using the WP-CLI. Speaking of plugins, for an enhanced customers’ WordPress experience, any caching plugin will significantly improve your WordPress performance.

Acronis and ZNetLive join forces to offer new security solution

Acronis and ZNetLive join forces to offer new security solution - Plesk

Our partners Acronis and ZNetLive have just teamed up to create a stronger, more accessible cybersecurity solution for users. ZNetLive is India’s largest cloud distributor, having 17 years experience under their belt and customers in 70+ countries. They have now partnered with Acronis, leading security provider with innovative backup and recovery solutions, file sync for enterprises – plus share solutions for both small and larger businesses. Check out the Acronis backup extension, available to Plesk users.

Reasons behind the Acronis ZNetLive Partnership

The main goal for this relationship is to optimize ZNetLive’s partner network and bring Acronis services to small businesses. There is a clear need for each customer to have complete security, powered by AI, with effective ransom blocking. ZNetLive has a leading service in India and with Acronis, they will make huge steps in providing useful tools to a bigger community.

Together, they will give their partners the key skills and solutions to enhance their customers’ protection. Munseh Jadoun, CEO at ZNet Technologies, has talked about feeling motivated to work with Acronis and their security solutions. Whereas, Neil Morarji, Acronis GM, believes this partnership will increase demand in the Indian market.

ZNetLive, Acronis and Plesk

Plesk Onyx is an add-on service which works with ZNetLive’s Cloud VPS and Dedicated Servers, Cloud hosting as well as WordPress hosting, Microsoft Azure and AWS cloud. Also, ZNetLive works with a dedicated Plesk Bundle to help enterprises streamline their IT administration. This combination allows you to stay on top of the most innovative web technologies.

Meanwhile, the Acronis backup extension is available in Plesk too and enables reliable cloud backup for Plesk web hosting servers. Hosters using Plesk can protect entire servers, including all the customer websites they contain. Thus reducing demands on the server and network.

Furthermore, all Plesk administrators can backup on-demand, choose how often to backup, where to store backup data and check recover activity. You can also change your service plans within Plesk, enable or disable self-service recovery, and create a premium backup and disaster recovery service for your customers.

Both ZNetLive and Acronis are top enterprises in the cloud server and security environment. And we at Plesk feel proud of this agreement and the key benefits it will bring customers.

Is this partnership beneficial to you? Tell us in the comments.

Become a Plesk Partner Too

Plesk Partners like ZNetLive get to enjoy a host of benefits from our Partner program. Including exclusive discounts and resources, exposure, support and consultations from our dedicated Partner Success Team, and much more. On the other hand, Acronis teamed up with us to bridge the gap of additional backup solutions for Plesk users. And so developed a Plesk extension to incorporate it into our platform. If you too feel like you can contribute and develop for Plesk, click below and talk to one of our experts.

“Plesk is responsible for bridging our technical gaps” – EverData Success Story

EverData CEO, Naveen Sharma talks about Plesk

What once required manual coding, scripting and technical know-how, is now easily automated for users of any skill. Automation – which is possible with the likes of the simple, effective, hosting management platform: Plesk. For us, Plesk automation is responsible for bridging the gaps between technical and non-technical users. I am Naveen Sharma, CEO of EverData Technologies and I’m here to tell you how Plesk has impacted our lives.

EverData

Who are EverData Technologies?

We started out as a small domain name provider in 2013 with a modest list of traditional hosting plans. But now, EverData Technologies successfully delivers complete hosting solutions worldwide. Including cloud services for max availability, SSD hosting for speed, SEO hosting, collocation, and recently – VPS Cloud SSD hosting. Our growth philosophy is simple: Always be customer-centric. Good quality, fair pricing, and reliable support are the three fundamentals that earned our company a distinct reputation in the industry.

EverData Clients Prefer Plesk

Research, feedback, and polls from our varied client base revealed that more than 70% of our clients were satisfied with Plesk. This is because a large part of our client base includes start-ups who can’t afford to focus on technical problem-solving. And most of them found Plesk to be simple enough to handle.

We love how it’s compatible with multiple OS – Linux, Windows, and so on, and how truly scalable Plesk is. On the one hand, beginners can handle all basic options with its intuitive interface. Meanwhile, advanced users with specific needs can exercise extended control to manage and optimize.

Naveen Sharma

“What we like most about Plesk is the commitment to innovation without compromising on simplicity.”

“While others may introduce the proprietary hosting panel, we use one panel - Plesk.”

In short, Plesk hosting panel is simple, innovative, user-friendly and scalable – fully resonating with EverData’s forward-thinking philosophy. Moreover, we’re continuously happy with Plesk’s value additions year after year. So, we thought there’s no merit in reinventing the wheel.

We dropped plans to develop our proprietary hosting panel and started encouraging our non-technical clients to use Plesk instead. We even assisted via free Plesk training sessions to help non-technical clients manage different hosting aspects themselves.

EverData resellers use Plesk to manage technical issues

EverData also offers reseller hosting packages, while receiving positive feedback on Plesk hosting panel. Resellers say that one of the best things about Plesk is that advanced versions, such as Plesk 12.0 onwards, helped manage client issues. Even if they have no advanced technical knowledge.

“It used to be difficult – trying to answer queries related to subscriptions, plans, and clients.”

However, latest Plesk developments have allowed us to take the ownership, switch to our resellers’ account and repair issues quick. Again, this perfectly aligns with an EverData philosophy- “take complete ownership of complex issues!”

Are we perfectly satisfied with Plesk?

Well, I believe that perfection is not attainable. But if we chase it – we catch excellence. What matters is how persistent Plesk is in constantly evolving. Ultimately, based on our experience with clients and resellers, we can say that Plesk hosting panel satisfies various client needs. No matter the business, budget, and technical knowledge.

In fact, in our upcoming WebnCloud Expo 2019, we’re thinking of adding a Plesk training session for new clients and resellers. Among sessions on Linux, RedHat, and VPS cloud, we’ll discuss the latest Plesk versions and the advanced options they offer.

Are you a reseller?
Register for Plesk Partner Benefits.

Never tried Plesk?
Get a free 14-day trial to explore.

Hidden Blockchain Opportunities (3): Decentralized Cloud Storage

Hidden Blockchain Opportunities - Decentralized Cloud Storage - Plesk

Decentralized Cloud Storage is one use case that’s growing very fast and aims to solve one of the biggest online challenges today. Cloud storage is controlled by a few super large providers (Google, Microsoft, Dropbox, Amazon, and so on). Raising questions about data protection, privacy, licensing, control and ownership of data. It’s yet another hidden blockchain opportunity for hosting and cloud providers.

Decentralized Cloud Storage in the Blockchain age

A few Blockchain companies have started working on proper alternatives, providing opportunities for cloud and hosting providers too! They all operate in a similar way:

(Read part 1 of the Blockchain series if this is not clear yet)

  • Instead of running storage through a company that controls it centrally, a decentralized Blockchain network stores the data.
  • The technology is open source and there’s no company controlling the data within this Blockchain network.
  • Compared to a centralized network, decentralized cloud storage ( decentralized networks ) represents not 100s or 1000s of computers/servers, but often millions. The price to store data is lower and the availability of such network is significantly higher than traditionally centralized networks.
  • The data is encrypted and each user controls their own encryption keys. Making the Blockchain concept a rock solid, unhackable and unbreakable solution.

Examples of such Blockchains are:

  • STORJ: (Funding: 35M USD) – Version S3 compatible V3 will be released soon
  • Sia: (Funding: 1.5M USD) – in production
  • Filecoin: (Funding: 257M USD) – no product yet, just a file system so far
  • IPFS: (Funding unknown) – in production and already used by developers worldwide.

Where’s the opportunity for cloud and hosting providers?

Because of the way these Blockchain networks operate, there are two use cases that hosting & cloud service providers can pursue.

  1. Consume storage:
    For example, use the storage of these networks to have an additional way of storing special or sensitive data, at a super cheap price.
  2. Contribute your spare/idle infrastructure:
    Add it into the Blockchain network to help keep it up and running. Get paid in tokens.

We’re still in the early stage of decentralized storage, but the expectations are high. This considering the investment sizes and advantages this approach provides, compared to centrally-controlled cloud storage. So I recommend you have a look now and make sure you’re ready for it as early as possible.

Decentralized Computing powered by Fog Computing (aka Blockchain)

Imagine running a decentralized approach for computing power across millions of computers on a Blockchain. It’s probably one of the most complex Blockchain areas being built.

Traditional cloud computing, especially the hyperscale cloud providers, consists of a few large companies – Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Alibaba. They have central control over thousands of machines, used by millions of users. Plus a couple of thousands of hosting providers, but they’re 100x smaller than the global hyperscale giants.

There are now organizations, funded with millions of USD, that are trying to change this. So that cloud computing can become “Fog Computing” – a globally scalable network of computing power based on a Blockchain. Millions of computers connected decentrally – without central control. Making computing power usage on a global scale not only more secure, but also much more inexpensive.

Where’s the opportunity for cloud & hosting providers?

Computing power:

  1. Even if those new approaches are decentralized, the computing power behind is still required. But it will be layered and connected across the world through a secure and scalable Blockchain layer. Such computing power (spare, idle infrastructure) can be easily contributed into those networks and get paid in tokens.
  2. In case you need in-expensive computing power in a secure and scalable way, those offerings will be much more cost effective than traditional offering.

Here are a few well-funded companies working hard to launch or have already launched their network. Some even go as far as to develop apps on these infrastructures using the new standard, Webassembly.

Next Blockchain steps for Hosting & Cloud Providers?

Despite its early stage in a super fast growing and developing space, there already are multiple initial Blockchain use cases. So it’s definitely the right time for the cloud and hosting provider industry to be part of it. We recommend checking all the use cases mentioned above and in part 2 of our Blockchain series and seeing if they work for you. Be active, grow your business.

Recommendations for further reading:

Hidden Blockchain Opportunities (2): Masternodes & Enterprise Blockchain Hosting

Hidden Blockchain Opportunities - Masternodes and Enterprise Hosting - Plesk

If you remember the concept of “Proof of Stake” (e.g. no “mining” with special hardware needed), most of alternative cryptocurrencies out of Bitcoin and Ethereum still require a good amount of “full nodes” that keep the decentralized network up and running. Masternodes are the back-end network of proof-of-stake cryptocurrencies.

1. Masternodes and Blockchain

A wallet, or a whole blockchain instance, runs on millions of computers worldwide keeping the various blockchains up and running. Masternodes do that in real-time, with more advanced setups, and often running in data centers.

This is where the opportunity is for cloud and hosting service providers. The modern way of mining – keeping public decentralized blockchain networks up and running.

Why are Masternodes gold for cloud and hosting providers?

  1. You can setup more/better targeted solution offerings for people who are interested in hosting their cryptocurrency masternodes with certain pre-configurations.
  2. Cloud and hosting providers can run their own masternodes with spare hardware and monetize this new opportunity.
  3. When running masternodes as a cloud & hosting provider:
    • If you run pre-configured masternode VPSs that you sell to end customers, you can charge a premium for the managed service (security or monitoring, for example) and simplify the automation of masternode VPSs.
    • If you run one or multiple masternodes yourself, you can monetize spare infrastructure or hardware in a much better way.

How to make money from running masternodes

Generally, the masternode concept, like Dash or Zcoin, is an investment. So besides helping to keep a blockchain network up and running, you are:

  1. Investing in cryptocurrency money upfront, limiting entry to those who really mean business.
  2. As soon as you have the node up and running, you’re getting a share of the transaction fees. At the time of writing, crypto prices are low, so you can sell high later. And considering the run into Blockchain worldwide was so fast, it’s likely prices will rise again soon.

Here’s a good resource on masternode types and their relevant ROI.

But before you set up your own Masternodes, please:

  1. Make sure you understand the technical platform, team and project behind each masternode concept. And be certain there’s a real cryptocurrency and blockchain running behind it.
  2. Diversify your investments and don’t put all your money into one single masternode concept or cryptocurrency.
  3. Comply with AML (Anti Money Laundering) and/or KYC (Know Your Customer) Laws.

Masternode providers today:

2. Enterprise Blockchain Hosting

So far we’ve been talking about public Blockchains. That means zero central control and all of them decentralized. Some would call them “uncontrolled” despite the built-in consensus mechanisms those blockchains have.

However, for some time, there’s been another approach – private/permissioned Blockchains. This rising star will convince large enterprises to benefit from Blockchain technology because all stakeholders can easily share data across multiple companies and competitors in a secure way. And this wasn’t available before at reasonable cost.

The main difference is that they’re only available to a set of stakeholders with read and/or write access. Often, an association of adjacent companies or competitors use such stakeholders for a secure proof of record for a selected set of data. This is based on distributed consensus algorithms – and still not seen by the rest of the world.

This means great Enterprise/ permissioned Blockchain Hosting opportunities for cloud, managed and infrastructure providers. Because they can build, run and manage such Blockchain infrastructures for their customer or multiple customers.

There are several example projects in production already, even outside the classic financial use case. Including identity systems, real estate, supply chain and more. Ultimately, they provide a better approach than traditionally centralized databases.

Companies and organizations to check out if you want to learn more:

Stay tuned for the final part of the Hidden Blockchain Opportunities series next Monday. We’ll talk about one more use case for hosting and cloud service provides – Decentralized Cloud storage!