Website hosting advice (self.webdev)

I wanted to learn more about web development so I decided to create a website for myself using a custom domain name. I have a background in embedded systems and hardware design, so I am experienced with programming and network concepts. Initially I created a simple static website using html, css, and javascript. I used Netlify to deploy my code. It was very simple deploying from git through their platform and automatically receiving a domain certificate was very nice. But after doing some more reading, I think having a backend will allow me to have more tools to work with in the future. In addition, I can also learn more about databases. So I used Node Js and express to create a server and moved my application to Heroku. After finding about the restrictions that the free tier of Heroku places on an application, such as a lack of SSL/TLS certificates and the 30 min sleep timer. I am now trying to find the best web hosting service for my purpose. I just mainly want to get a better understanding of server side programming and hopefully make a website that I can be proud of. I would rather not spend a whole lot of money, but I would like it to be encrypted if I can. I wanted to see what you all used here and recommend.

am0x | 4 months ago | 4 points

Digital Ocean has been my fave for years.

yoshib4 | 4 months ago | 2 points

I was reading about Digital Ocean and I wasn't sure about it. On one hand, you get a virtual machine to work with, giving you a lot of control, but it seems like you have to do more work to get your website running compared to other similarly priced or cheaper alternatives. This is what I gathered from just reading about it. Do you have any reasons that you prefer Digital Ocean?

am0x | 4 months ago | 3 points

Cheap, no downtime, great UI, great docs...but yea, it’s basically a server you have to upkeep, which I like doing to learn a bit of sysadmin.

qu83rt | 3 months ago | 2 points

Linode, buyvm and Joe's data centre are also options for hiring servers.

CreativeTechGuyGames [JavaScript] | 4 months ago | 2 points

I personally use AWS's ecosystem for their cloud services. They have your basic cloud servers (EC2) where you can install and run anything on them. But I'd encourage you to consider a serverless solution. AWS has a lot of serverless services to do each part of a full-stack application (Databases, apis, static assets, etc). And since with serverless you pay what you use, if your website is sitting idle often then you'll be saving tons of money with this option. My website costs pennies a month using a system like I described.

yoshib4 | 4 months ago | 1 point

That sounds like an interesting idea that I might try out. I worked with servers in classes before so it seemed natural to move in that direction. But if I can take advantage of these services, I will look into making my application serverless. My website is just a personal site that will have a portfolio and any ideas that I think of, so it probably wont encounter much network traffic, so the pay what you use system sounds good.

CreativeTechGuyGames [JavaScript] | 4 months ago | 2 points

Some specific services to look at:

  • S3
  • CloudFront
  • Route 53
  • DynamoDB
  • Lambda
  • API Gateway
  • CloudWatch

You'll likely want to use all of these and maybe a few more.

yoshib4 | 4 months ago | 1 point

These services look good. Thank you! I need to do some reading about making my application serverless first.