There are over 300 Linux distributions worldwide, but Ubuntu has a firm hold over the web hosting market. It powers more than 37% of all websites running today. Since you don’t get a choice of operating system (OS) in shared hosting, you need a VPS plan if you want to run an Ubuntu server.
Technically, VPS hosting plans should all support all Linux distributions. However, that’s if you’re willing to get down and dirty in the command line. If you want to run Ubuntu, consider a VPS host that offers it as a default OS or in an easy-to-deploy mode.
Recommended Ubuntu VPS Hosting
- LiquidWeb VPS – from $25/mo
- A2 Hosting VPS – from $4.99/mo
- InMotion Hosting VPS – from $5/mo
- Hostinger Ubuntu VPS – from $3.49/mo
- ScalaHosting VPS – from $29.95/mo
- Kamatera Cloud VPS – from $4/mo
If you're trying to decide on which VPS hosts make life easier for those who want to run an Ubuntu server, below are the ins and outs of these web hosts.
1. LiquidWeb VPS
Price: From $25/mo
LiquidWeb is one of the more specialized service providers on our Ubuntu VPS list. The brand focuses on the high-performance end of the hosting space. Managed services here are the norm, allowing you to build your business instead of struggling with technology.
What Makes LiquidWeb Great for Ubuntu
LiquidWeb's VPS plans support a broad range of operating systems. While Windows Server is available, you get a more comprehensive range of Linux distributions. That range covers everything from CentOS to, of course, Ubuntu.
You can swap OS any time, so there's no problem if you want to experiment with Ubuntu 16.04 or 18.04. The only catch is that LiquidWeb doesn't allow you to install a custom OS on their VPS plans.
LiquidWeb's range of VPS plans is quite broad, offering bonus features that you won't often see with other service providers. Examples include Acronis Cyber Backups, a formidable Threat Stack Oversight Detection System, and Cloudflare Pro.
VPS plans here also come with an uptime guarantee of 100%. Once you add all the features, you'll likely find the pricing very competitive. It's better than opting for a cheap plan and then later finding out everything you need is an “optional extra.”
LiquidWeb VPS Pricing
VPS plans at LiquidWeb start at $25/mo and top at $145/mo. The entry-level VPS plan is already quite comprehensive. There is a broad range of plans to choose from, and, being VPS, you can scale quickly at any time.
2. A2 Hosting VPS
Price: From $4.99/mo
A2 Hosting is a company I’ve used for many years. They offer many web hosting plans that are known for reliability. Their customer service is also a cut above the rest, but the most significant A2 Hosting advantage is that they offer everything under the sun.
What Makes A2 Hosting VPS Great for Ubuntu
A2 Hosting offers two broad categories of VPS plans. You can get either managed or unmanaged VPS hosting. Managed plans are always easier to work with since you can simply request an Ubuntu installation, which will magically appear.
However, A2 Hosting also offers an advantage in their unmanaged VPS plans. These plans come with an option to reinstall the OS. This feature allows you to swap to an Ubuntu installation (18.04 or 20.04) at any time effortlessly. Also supported are CentOS 7, Debian 10, and AlmaLinux 8.
Ubuntu aside, A2 Hosting offers many other advantages that you’ll love. For those willing to spend the big bucks, you can get TURBO servers that offer 20X performance, NVMe storage, and more.
Another highlight is A2 Hosting’s anytime money-back guarantee. They offer full refunds if you cancel within 30 days. Beyond that, you can still change your mind and get a pro-rated refund. If you host elsewhere, that’s not likely going to happen.
A2 Hosting VPS Pricing
A2 Hosting isn’t what I would consider cheap, but their unmanaged VPS plans are very wallet-friendly. You can get your Ubuntu server running here for a mere $4.99/mo. Of course, Managed VPS is easier to handle, but these start from $39.99/mo.
3. InMotion Hosting VPS
Price: From $5/mo
InMotion Hosting offers a good range of web hosting solutions. You'll likely find it available whether you need standard shared hosting or VPS with specific deployments. They have an excellent reputation for good performance and customer support.
What Makes InMotion Hosting VPS Great for Ubuntu
InMotion Hosting only offers managed, and unmanaged VPS plans. These are cloud-based plans that take the reliability of VPS to another level. As you might expect, the unmanaged VPS plans aren’t suitable for everyone and will take some technical skill to handle.
However, having root access and complete control means you’re free to configure your VPS to the exact specifications desired. Plus, there are automation tools that can help you push the limits of your unmanaged VPS.
The real gems are InMotion’s Managed VPS plans that come with all the bells and whistles. That includes NVMe-powered storage, a choice of OS including Ubuntu, and what Inmotion calls “Launch Assist.”
Launch Assist comes only with their Managed VPS and gives you 2 hours of free personal assistance from an InMotion system administrator. He can help you transfer a website, customize your server, or handle any other technical work during that period.
InMotion Hosting VPS Pricing
Unmanaged VPS plans at InMotion start at only $5/mo. You get 1GB RAM, 1 vCPU, 25GB SSD storage, and 1TB bandwidth. Managed VPS plans start from $19.99/mo and come with roughly double the resources offered by the cheapest unmanaged VPS plan.
4. Hostinger Ubuntu VPS
Many see the Hostinger brand as offering budget or cheap web hosting. While it does provide affordable web hosting, that doesn’t mean it can’t come with what you need. Instead, focus on what Hostinger does best – provide decent web hosting plans and highly localized services.
What Makes Hostinger VPS Great for Ubuntu
Despite only offering unmanaged VPS plans, Hostinger offers “templates” that you can use for server configurations. The templates are extensive, and you will likely be able to get your Ubuntu VPS server up in a short time.
Bare OS installations support Ubuntu 18.04 and 20.04. However, it would be better to consider one of their more complete templates. For example, you can run a template that includes Ubuntu 18.04 64-bit with Webmin or Virtualmin and an entire LAMP stack.
Unmanaged VPS at Hostinger also comes with root access. This lightweight, barebones approach allows you to optimize performance and lose fewer resources to unnecessary package installations.
Hostinger VPS Pricing
VPS plans at Hostinger start at a low of $3.49/mo. That makes it one of the cheapest VPS solutions you’re likely to find. Of course, that also means minimal resources, including 1vCPU, 1GB RAM, 20GB SSD storage, and 1TB bandwidth.
5. ScalaHosting VPS
Price: From $29.95/mo
ScalaHosting is one of the more unique brands on this list due to its penchant for building proprietary applications. One of the more outstanding elements is SPanel, a free web hosting control panel alternative that it offers for those wishing to avoid costly cPanel fees.
What Makes ScalaHosting VPS Great for Ubuntu
Like many hosts, ScalaHosting offers managed and unmanaged VPS plans. Their managed VPS plans come with CentOS 7 by default. If you want to change the OS, you must request a change later, which can be troublesome.
Their unmanaged VPS plans allow you to choose the OS during the configuration stage. This method makes more sense – provided you’re willing to forego managed services. You can choose Ubuntu 20.04, Debian 10, Rocky Linux 8, Alma Linux 8, CentOS 7, and OpenSUSE 15.
Unfortunately, they don’t seem to support older Ubuntu distributions. If you want one of those, you will probably need to download and deploy it on your own.
This highlight here, naturally, is SPanel. Not only is this control panel free, but it’s also cPanel compatible. That means you can migrate your existing cPanel-based account over to ScalaHosting with few problems.
ScalaHosting VPS Pricing
ScalaHosting VPS used to be first-cheap, but they’ve steadily been improving capabilities, leading to price hikes. Managed VPS plans start from $29.95/mo if you host on their infrastructure. For a higher price, you can choose to deploy on AWS or Digital Ocean.
Unmanaged VPS at ScalaHosting starts from $59/mo but comes with more resources. The cheapest plan offers 4 CPU cores, 8GB RAM, and 240GB SSD space.
6. Kamatera Cloud VPS
Kamatera isn't your average run-of-the-mill web hosting provider. It’s focused on Cloud services. Even their “standard” web hosting plans require you to customize the plans. The result is that hosting with Kamatera is all cloud-based VPS.
What Makes Kamatera Great for Ubuntu
As far as Ubuntu-based hosting goes, Kamatera is perhaps the most highly configurable. During sign-up, you can choose from a vast number of OS. For Ubuntu alone, that means Ubuntu 16.04 (32 or 64-bit), 18.04 64-bit, or 20.04 64-bit.
Other elements at Kamatera are also highly specialized. For example, you can choose the CPU type ranging from availability, burst, general purpose, to dedicated. Since it’s cloud-based, you can also choose from more server locations.
One issue is that basic cloud-based plans are all unmanaged. You must opt for their Fully Managed Cloud services if you need hand-holding. However, deploying new servers is a breeze, thanks to their dashboard tools.
Kamatera Cloud VPS Pricing
Kamatera cloud VPS starts from $4/mo. However, the plans are highly configurable, meaning the top ceiling for prices can go very high. Also, keep in mind that these are unmanaged prices and management services are an optional extra.
What is Ubuntu and Why Use it for VPS Hosting?
Ubuntu is one of the most frequently used Linux distributions. One of the key reasons it’s ideal for VPS hosting is that it is powerful and comes with a comprehensive software repository that’s exceptionally lightweight.
Ubuntu is also commonly available with many web hosting providers. You can easily download it and deploy it on your VPS plan if it isn't. Remember that Ubuntu is available in desktop and server versions. You will need to download Ubuntu server for your VPS.
The latest stable version of Ubuntu server is Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. However, you can also run older versions like Ubuntu 18.04.6 LTS. Note, however, that older versions of Ubuntu will have an earlier end-of-life date.
VPS hosting is one of the most flexible forms of web hosting. The main reasons are scalability and customizability. You get a powerful web hosting platform configurable to your requirements at a fraction of the price a dedicated server would cost.
Managed VPS hosting plans are a better option since the host will help you manage the configuration and maintenance. However, managed VPS also comes at a much higher cost. Regardless of your choice, Ubuntu is an excellent OS for your VPS.