In database hosting, a third-party service provider offers a client company the computer infrastructure and related components to run a database of the client’s choosing.

The hosting provider configures the environment to keep the data safe and secure, supplies quick, easy, and private database access over the internet, and furnishes the resources to scale the database as needed. Generally, the hosting provider will offer managed services and other resources that clients can choose from based on their requirements.

Benefits of database hosting

Database hosting arose as an alternative to running a database and its applications in a standard on-premises environment, on computing infrastructure owned and operated by the organization itself.

Databases require a lot of memory, computing power, and other infrastructure that is expensive to purchase and maintain. If you’re a small company, it can be cost-prohibitive to buy what you need for high database access speed, availability, and scale, especially if you’re running resource-intensive applications like Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). Even for large enterprises, there are better places to invest budget dollars than enormous provisions of database-dedicated IT infrastructure.

This is where database hosting comes in: engaging a services provider to run your database on their virtualized cloud infrastructure.

What types of databases can be hosted by a managed services provider?

Most any kind of popular databases can be hosted. The most commonly used database system is the relational database or RDBMS, which stores data in highly structured tables. RDBMS technology is decades old, which makes it mature and stable, but also makes it a poor fit for the needs of today’s users and applications. It's increasingly far too inflexible to work with the mixed kinds of datasets that have become so prevalent.

For this and many other reasons, non-relational databases such as the document store, exemplified by MongoDB, are rapidly gaining ground for all kinds of modern platforms and for retooling mission-critical enterprise applications to meet today’s demands.

Where can I host a database?

Database hosting providers are in plentiful supply all over the world. The largest hosting sites are Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and there are many local and regional providers as well. If database hosting is a smart move for you, an even smarter one is taking the concept to the next level of ease and performance with Database as a Service, or DBaaS.

Put differently, why just outsource the infrastructure to run your database when you can outsource its management as well. DBaaS is a value-added variant of database hosting, a fee-based subscription service in which the provider takes on administrative burdens such as database migration, installation, configuration, maintenance, and upgrades.

A prime example of DBaaS is MongoDB Atlas, the managed database service that runs the popular MongoDB database for you. The service installs and operates MongoDB on your choice of the three biggest and best infrastructure hosting platforms: AWS, Azure, or GCP, or a hybrid combination of all three. Atlas manages and guarantees 99.995% uptime, elastic scalability, and airtight privacy and security. All you have to do is turn the service on and start using your database.

MongoDB Atlas also includes data recovery, automated upgrades, performance monitoring, and optimization, elastic up or downscaling, and the ability to deploy in multi-cloud configurations in nearly 70 regions around the world -- all of which frees your IT team from tedious database management tasks. Instead, they can focus on building cutting-edge applications with the database that’s most widely recognized for developer productivity.

Get Started with MongoDB Atlas

Learn more about database hosting with MongoDB Atlas.