Having alternatives to choose from is one of the best parts of the world today. While Digital Ocean Cloud Hosting is pretty neat, other options exist if it doesn't float your boat. Be it price, performance, features, or otherwise, there's always something for everyone.
After all, we're individuals with varying tastes in products. Here are the eight best alternatives if you're looking for something similar (or even not so similar) to Digital Ocean.
Quick Comparison of Digital Ocean Alternatives
Website: https://www.tmdhosting.com/ . Price: Starts at $5.95/mo
TMDhosting has been around for many years and provides a reasonably comprehensive range of web hosting services. It's known for excellent performance and offers customers a well-priced step into the world of Cloud hosting.
Why We Recommend TMDHosting
TMDhosting is one of the traditional service providers that includes Cloud hosting in its product range. That leaves a lot of room for a diverse market of customers, meaning you have more choices available.
As an alternative to Digital Ocean, TMDHosting presents some advantages and disadvantages. One of the biggest highlights is that Cloud hosting here is fully managed and offered at highly competitive prices. It also presents all the typical bells and whistles you won't find at most hardcore Cloud providers.
If you prefer having Cloud hosting with extra trimmings like email hosting, website templates, and web hosting control panels, then TMDhosting Cloud is an excellent choice. You can efficiently run TMDCloud just like any other regular web hosting plan.
TMDHosting Key Features
- 60-day Money-back guarantee
- SpamExperts spam filtering
- Media server capabilities
- 1-Click app installation
- Developer tools
Pros and Cons of TMDHosting
- Familiar web hosting environment
- Little technical upkeep required
- Free domain name
- Decent options in server locations
- Easy site migrations
- Pay extra for domain ID protection
- Lack of server control
Who Should Use TMDHosting: Bloggers, beginners, and small or medium business websites.
Website: https://www.linode.com/ . Price: Starts at $5/mo
Linode is a cloud hosting company founded in 2003 by Christopher Aker. The company is based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and has data centers throughout the United States, London, Frankfurt, Singapore, and Tokyo.
Why We Recommend Linode
Because of the similarity in products and services, Linode is one of the best direct-competing options to Digital Ocean. Both companies offer a solid range of Cloud-based hosting solutions that revolve around computing elements like compute, networking, and storage.
The similarities also mean the choice between these two is highly debatable. For example, users on either side lay claims to “better performance,” which even the most in-depth reviews can find challenging to prove.
However, those who simply don't wish to opt for Digital Ocean will find some Linode advantages convincing. One strong point in its favor is the extensive knowledge base and tutorials available. A reliable support team is also available if that's insufficient.
Linode Key Features
- Server management dashboard
- One-click App marketplace
- Managed services available
- Server CLI management
- Linode API
Pros and Cons of Linode
- Easy app deployment
- Broad range of services
- Good support
- Comprehensive documentation
- Technical skills required
- Slightly complex downsizing process
Who Should Use Linode: Developers, Business websites, and eCommerce websites.
Website: https://www.vultr.com/ . Price: Starts at $5/mo
Vultr is a cloud hosting provider founded in 2014 and headquartered in Matawan, New Jersey. Like Linode, it offers a similar range of products and services to Digital Ocean. Over the past year, Vultr has steadily accelerated its growth, opening new data centers in multiple locations.
Why We Recommend Vultr
Vultr's clean and easy-to-use management interface makes it a good move for those accustomed to Digital Ocean. That, plus its simplified product offerings, results in a more streamlined experience for most users.
One of the most significant advantages Vultr offers over Digital Ocean is its more extensive selection of data center locations. It operates from 28 locations worldwide (compared to Digital Ocean's 12) – a number that's shown continuous growth.
Vultr offers several APIs that offer significant advantages. The core Vultr API allows infrastructure management automation, while others, such as its Metadata API, support instance self-discovery and configuration.
Vultr Key Features
- Extensive OS library
- Supports custom ISOs
- 28 Data center locations
- Server control panel
- Managed API access
Pros and Cons of Vultr
- Easy application deployment
- Team management
- Server health monitoring
- Highly affordable pricing
- Offers some licensed services
- Limited support channels
- Some scalability limits
Who Should Use Vultr: Developers and small to medium-scale websites.
Website: https://www.cloudways.com/en/ . Price: Starts from $12/mo
Unlike Digital Ocean, Cloudways isn't a core Cloud infrastructure provider. Instead, it creates a business by offering a simplified Cloud management dashboard. The solution helps even the newest Cloud users to manage their Cloud hosting accounts seamlessly.
Why We Recommend Cloudways
Cloudways acts as the gateway to several Cloud service providers, including Digital Ocean, Linode, and Google Cloud. You can run servers from one or more service providers via the same dashboard.
That same dashboard adds a stunning dimension of simplicity to Cloud hosting management. While this drives up the cost significantly, it ultimately saves money for those who might need to onboard the necessary technical competencies to operate their Cloud-based websites.
Cloudways also offers several exciting enhancements as core or optional extras. For example, WordPress site owners can use Breeze, a caching plugin that's pretty effective compared to most free solutions.
Note: Cloudways is currently owned by Digital Ocean.
Cloudways Key Features
- Cloud management dashboard
- Works with several Cloud providers
- Advanced caching component
- Multiple plug-and-play features
- Auto-healing servers
Pros and Cons of Cloudways
- Run multi-infrastructure servers
- Multi-team account management
- Performance enhancements available
- Easy app and server cloning
- WP migration plugin
- No email included
- Complex to scale down plans
Who Should Use Cloudways: New Cloud users, WordPress users, business websites, and eCommerce platforms.
Website: https://www.dreamhost.com/ . Price: Starts at $4.50/mo
Dreamhost has a long history in the web hosting scene, and it's taken that time to progress toward being one of the best. You'll find that everything this service provider does is with an aim toward excellence.
Why We Recommend Dreamhost
While Dreamhost isn't a Cloud specialist, it is one of the most outstanding service providers. The company doesn't create product categories to chase customers, but builds specialized plans with multiple targeted advantages.
Where Cloud is concerned, it places itself at two ends of the same spectrum you would expect from a company like Digital Ocean. At the low end, you can get dirt-cheap Cloud hosting suitable for newbies or as a test environment. That can then scale up quickly as you acquire the necessary skills.
The best part about choosing Dreamhost is its transparency in the tools it uses and provides. They leverage highly on open-source, building highly compatible environments for universal tools and making your life much easier.
Dreamhost Key Features
- Compute and Object Cloud hosting
- Full root access
- All-SSD servers
- Runs almost all OS
- Open-source dashboard
Pros and Cons of Dreamhost
- Offers many developer-centric tools
- Includes lots of storage
- Self-healing storage systems
- Runs on OpenStack
- Vertical and horizontal scaling
- Limited choice in data centers
- Free bandwidth is for a limited time
Who Should Use Dreamhost: Developers, business websites of any scale, professional bloggers, and eCommerce platforms.
Website: https://www.hostwinds.com/ . Price: Starts at $5/mo
Hostwinds isn't a brand that I regularly recommend, but they offer a series of solid Cloud hosting plans that closely mirror those from Digital Ocean. They're one of the few full-service hosting companies that don't try to transform Cloud hosting beyond recognition.
Why We Recommend Hostwinds
Hostwinds comes with a solid recommendation for its performance. One of its key qualities lies in customer service. It isn't just the technical aptitude of their techs but the customer-centric approach that creates an ecosystem of happy users.
The one area that seems a little on the downside is pricing. Although it offers similar prices as other traditional hosting competitors, they're much higher than pure cloud providers than Digital Ocean, Linode, or Vultr.
Yet, given the user-friendly dashboard, I would say that's fair value. After all, service providers like Cloudways do something similar yet offer plans at higher prices than you'll find at Hostwinds.
Hostwinds Key Features
- User-friendly Cloud Control Portal
- Load Balancers on demand
- Robust API
- Nightly backups
- Fast scalability
Pros and Cons of Hostwinds
- Free website transfers
- Supports custom ISOs
- Traffic distribution configuration
- Pre-configured server launches
- Friendly customer support
- Lack of localized support
- No phone support
Who Should Use Hostwinds: New Cloud users, small to medium business websites, and professional bloggers.
Website: https://www.hostinger.com/ . Price: Starts at $9.99/mo
The Hostinger brand is typically associated with cheap web hosting. Where Cloud is concerned, it does a slight turnabout and tends to focus on the mid to upper range of Cloud plans. Comparatively, however, those plans are still value-packed when taken against the likes of Digital Ocean.
Why We Recommend Hostinger
Hosting has always been a go-to choice where value is concerned. Their Cloud offerings continue this tradition and offer established websites an excellent cost-savings proposition. The only downside is that you won't find any ultra-cheap exploratory plans that devs usually target.
The cheapest Cloud hosting plan comes packed with goodies, including a stunning lineup of 2 CPU cores and 3GB of RAM at just $9.99/mo. At Digital Ocean, a similar configuration will set you back nearly double the amount.
Yet Hostinger isn't perfect, and just to be upfront, it's performance has been a bit suspect at times. If you aren't afraid of a little risk, it still offers a great opportunity to move your website into the Cloud performance zone for a steal.
Hostinger Key Features
- Unlimited free SSL
- Cache manager
- 1-Click app deployment
- Daily backups
- Custom control panel
Pros and Cons of Hostinger
- Built for power users
- Free email hosting included
- Access manager for teams
- Unmetered bandwidth
- Low technical skill requirements
- Limited data center locations
- No low-end plans available
Who Should Use Hostinger: Small to medium business websites, eCommerce sites, and blogs of all sizes.
8. AWS (Amazon Lightsail)
Website: https://aws.amazon.com/lightsail/ . Price: Starts at $3.50/mo
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is perhaps the one service provider on this list that doesn't need much of an introduction. However, it's also a brand often associated with super-high and complex Cloud solutions. Amazon is far more extensive than you may think, and their Amazon Lightsail is a perfect match as a Digital Ocean alternative.
Why We Recommend Amazon Lightsail
The most significant feature of Amazon Lightsail is that despite its dirt-cheap pricing, everything still runs on the legendary AWS infrastructure. That means reliability and performance are practically guaranteed, even if you're paying them less than what Digital Ocean might charge.
Lightsail plans start on almost the lowest of the low, with a paltry 512MB of RAM and a single processor core. That's enough to install and launch a web app and run it on shallow volume for some tests.
Thanks to the nature of the Cloud, you can easily spin that up quickly into a powerful behemoth if necessary. Lightsail plans stretch upward to 32GB RAM and eight powerful computing cores. That should be enough muscle to run even the beefiest of websites.
AWS Key Features
- Pre-configured cloud resources
- Based on AWS infrastructure
- 3-month free trial
- Click-to-launch OS and apps
- Extensive support marketplace
Pros and Cons of AWS Lightsail
- Ultra-low-cost of entry
- Supports containerized apps
- Fast and easy instance deployment
- Cheap add-on object storage
- Regionally unique pricing
- Can be confusing for newbies to navigate
- Multiple add-ons can quickly inflate cost
Who Should Use Amazon Lightsail: Developers, business websites of all sizes, and technically competent professional bloggers.
What is Digital Ocean Cloud Hosting?
Digital Ocean is a Cloud hosting specialist focusing on a single area of hosting expertise. It's built a formidable global business over the years, even taking over a PaaS provider like Cloudways to offer a more comprehensive product lineup.
Thanks to the acquisition, Digital Ocean is now suitable for many users, from newbies to Cloud hosting or even the most hardcore Cloud specialists. Like all Cloud services, Digital Ocean's product range offers some standard features;
- Excellent performance
- Ultra reliable services
- Support for advanced web deployments
If you aren't sure if the Cloud is for you, Digital Ocean and many of its competitors now make life much easier. Cloudways, for example, offers a management dashboard similar to those found on standard web hosting plans.
Final Thoughts: Why Choose a Digital Ocean Alternative?
Digital Ocean is pretty good at what it does, and I use them personally (via Cloudways) for a few of my projects. I have yet to find cause to complain about pricing or performance. Yet having reviewed dozens of web hosts, I understand that not everyone has the same needs.
There are many excellent alternatives if you feel that Digital Ocean doesn't provide what you seek. The most similar is Linode and Vultr. However, some lesser-known options like Amazon Lightsail may give you a surprise!