Before we get into the difference between a Dedicated IP and Shared IP, it’s helpful to have a general understanding of what an IP is and what role it plays. Contrary to what you might be thinking, you don’t have to be a techie to understand these concepts; all you need is to be curious, which is what got you here in the first place. So for starters, what is an IP address? IP stands for Internet Protocol and the Internet Protocol address is a numerical label that is assigned to a computer or any other digital device (printer etc) that enables communication between other computers and devices via the internet. The basic role that an IP address plays is that of an identifier and locator for the billions of digital devices that are connected to the internet. Now, what is the relationship between an IP and a domain name.
Every domain name is linked with an IP address. If you have owned a website in the past, you probably know that along with purchasing a domain, you need to purchase a web hosting. The hosting is nothing but a space for your website files to be accessed from. The domain name is simply a short, easy to remember phrase that identifies one website from another. It is also useful to think of the domain name as the nick name for the actual code that is the IP address. Take a deep breadth – The IP is the real set of numerical navigational instructions that communicates information about the address of your website files (stored in the server of you chosen host) in language that is easily understood by computers, but would just completely go over our human heads. So, domain names are for us humans to remember and the IP is in fact the real address of the website. Now that we have an idea of what an IP is, and what role it plays, let’s explore the difference between a shared IP address and a Dedicated IP address.
A shared IP is an IP address that is used for multiple sites. A shared IP can host all sites on a webserver. Because the IP address of a website is used for various sites on the server the actions of one site owner can affect everyone on the server. For example, if an IP address is blacklisted for spamming this will blacklist mail for all sites using the shared IP address. We work hard to prevent and to resolve these issues immediately and take corrective action against anyone who abuses the system. You will not be able to install an SSL certificate if your site is on a shared IP.
Many site owners are able to host their site on a shared IP without ever being affected by another owner on the server. If mail is critical to you we recommend using a mail hosting provider that can provide a robust mail server such as Google Apps. This will also help you because if the shared IP address becomes blacklistes your email will not be affected because your mail will be hosted elsewhere. Google Apps is able to offer more mail storage and better spam and junk filtering than the service that is available with your web hosting account with us.
A dedicated IP is an IP address that is assigned to one site. Large websites or e-commerce sites have dedicated IP addresses that host only one domain. If a site handles payment processing directly and not through a third party such as PayPal, the site must use SSL and therefore will need to be on a dedicated IP address.
The sites which are associated with the same usually require an SSL certificate which significantly requires a unique IP address. Having a unique IP address will help in using the SSL encryption on the same particular unique IP address as this will help in encrypting the transmission of the sensitive data in order to prevent it from the information interception. This SSL encryption can only be used on sites having unique IP addresses. Unique IP addresses are also known as the dedicated IP addresses which particularly means that one single IP address is being assigned as well as reserved for a particular site. Furthermore, unique IP addresses are significantly essential for e-commerce sites because these sites wishes to have accounts associated with the merchants where in they easily accept the credit cards.