Several options are available when choosing a cloud hosting provider for your website or application. Three of the most popular providers are Vultr, DigitalOcean, and Linode. All three offer similar services, but some key differences can make one a better fit for your specific needs. In this article, we will test and compare Vultr vs DigitalOcean vs Linode in terms of their features, pricing, and performance so that you can make a better-informed decision when choosing the best-unmanaged cloud hosting provider for your business.
Let's meet the contenders
Vultr is a cloud hosting provider established in 2014 by David Aninowsky. Although the company was initially headquartered in Matawan, New Jersey, its current headquarters are located in West Palm Beach, Florida. Vultr was created to provide developers with fast and dependable cloud hosting services at an affordable price. The platform offers various services, such as virtual private servers, bare metal servers, and storage solutions, which can be deployed quickly and easily. Despite being a relatively young company, Vultr has quickly earned a reputation as one of the top cloud hosting providers in the market thanks to its high-performance infrastructure, user-friendly platform, and outstanding customer support.
DigitalOcean is a cloud hosting provider established in 2011 by Moisey Uretsky and Ben Uretsky. The company is headquartered in New York City and has data centers in various regions worldwide. DigitalOcean’s mission is to make cloud computing more accessible to developers by providing a simple, easy-to-use, affordable platform. The company offers various services, including virtual private servers, managed databases, and object storage. One of the key selling points of DigitalOcean is their focus on simplicity, which is evident in their clean and intuitive user interface. Despite being a relatively small compared to some of their competitors, DigitalOcean has gained a loyal following among developers, thanks to their high-performance infrastructure, reliable uptime, and excellent customer support.
Linode is a cloud hosting provider founded in 2003 by Christopher Aker. The company is headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and has data centers in various regions worldwide. Linode aims to provide developers with a simple, scalable, cost-effective cloud hosting platform. Their services include virtual private servers, managed Kubernetes, and object storage. One of the key selling points of Linode is its commitment to open-source software, which is reflected in its use of Linux-based virtual servers and its contributions to various open-source projects. Linode has also earned a reputation for its excellent customer support, which includes 24/7 support via phone, email, and chat. With a focus on simplicity, affordability, and open source, Linode has become popular among developers looking for a reliable and flexible cloud hosting solution.
We will spin one virtual machine on each provider with the same cores and memory in the city and distro. After that, we are going to perform the following test:
- CPU/RAM using Geekbench 6
- DISK i/o Read/Write using FIO
- Network speed using Speedtest cli
- WordPress Speed using the WordPress Hosting Benchmark tool plugin
We are also evaluating the process of spinning a new virtual instance and its control panel.
We have selected the Frankfurt data center because all three providers are there.
The first challenge was to select which model to test, and we wanted to try dedicated vCPUs to understand their true performance better. Our Virtual Machine selection:
|Vultr||CPU Optimize||8 GB||4||75 GB||5 TB||$80.00/Month|
|DigitalOcean||CPU Optimize||8 GB||4||50 GB||5 TB||$109.00/Month|
|Linode||Dedicated CPU||8 GB||4||160 GB||5 TB||$60.00/Month|
Test # 1 Spinning a Virtual Machine
Spinning a Virtual Machine in Vultr
The virtual machine creation process is very simple and direct; you only have to choose your virtual server type, location, Server size, distro, and SSH key. Vultr was the only provider from this test who sent an email confirmation after the VM creation, and it was a nice touch.
Vultr Control Panel is easy to use and very user-friendly.
Spinning a Virtual Machine in DigitalOcean
DigitalOcean also has a very easy-to-use Control Panel, but it might be confusing for first-time users because it has more options and add-ons.
Spinning a Virtual Machine in Linode
We like the Linode automatic dark mode, and it was the only one in this round to have an automatic dark mode; Vultr also has a Dark Mode but it is not in sync with your browser or OS preferences.
And this round winner is...
We unanimously chose Vultr as our favorite, and the fact that it has a Dark Mode and they send the email confirmation but ultimately is a personal preference, so we decided to declare a tie.
Test # 2 CPU/Memory Performance
We use the tool Geekbench 6 to test single-core and multicore performance for this test. To install Geekbench 6 on Debian is very easy:
wget https://cdn.geekbench.com/Geekbench-6.0.1-Linux.tar.gz tar xzvf Geekbench-6.0.1-Linux.tar.gz cd Geekbench-6.0.1-Linux/ ./geekbench6
CPU/Memory Performance Result
Vultr stood out as the top performer. On the other hand, Linode’s performance was disappointing, but it was the cheapest option. However, its performance was less than 50% of Vultr’s, which is only approximately 33% more expensive than Linode. Therefore, it’s difficult to argue for choosing Linode over Vultr.
Full Test Results:
Test # 3 Disk Performance
To make the disk performance test more accurate to real-world conditions, we utilized FIO with a block size of 128K and tested both write and read speeds.
To test write speeds, we executed the following command:
fio --filename=test --rw=write --ioengine=libaio --direct=1 --blocksize=128K --size=15G --iodepth=32 --group_reporting --name=test
Regarding random write performance, Vultr proved to be the top performer with an impressive speed of 3043MiB/s. DigitalOcean followed closely behind with a speed of 2563MiB/s, while Linode came in last place with a speed of only 833MiB/s.
For read speed testing we use the following command
fio --filename=test --rw=read --ioengine=libaio --direct=1 --blocksize=128K --runtime=300 --iodepth=32 --group_reporting --name=test
The reading test results paint a different picture, with DigitalOcean proving to be the top performer with an impressive speed of 10.9GiB/s. However, in both disk performance tests, Linode came in last place. While we are unsure of the type of disk Linode is using, we suspect they are using SSDs rather than the faster NVME drives used by Vultr and DigitalOcean, which could explain their lower performance in these tests.
Test # 4 Network Performance
To evaluate the network performance of each provider, we utilized a widely-used network benchmark tool called Speedtest by Ookla. This tool offers a command-line interface that is easy to install and use on Linux, making it a convenient choice for our testing purposes.
apt-get install curl curl -s https://packagecloud.io/install/repositories/ookla/speedtest-cli/script.deb.sh | sudo bash apt-get install speedtest speedtest
During the network performance test, all providers demonstrated more than adequate network speeds. DigitalOcean emerged as the clear winner in terms of upload speed, while Vultr secured the top spot in the download department.
Test #5 WordPress Performance
For our WordPress performance test, we installed the same version of WordPress, database server, and web server across all three providers. Additionally, we utilized the 1-Click Install OLS, which automatically installs MariaDB, PHP, Openlitespeed, and LScache. It’s important to note that during these tests, no performance tuning was applied to WordPress, the database server, the web server, or the operating system.
bash <( curl -k https://raw.githubusercontent.com/litespeedtech/ols1clk/master/ols1clk.sh )
Once WordPress was installed, we utilized the WordPress Hosting Benchmark tool to evaluate the performance of each provider.
All results were multiplied by a factor of 10 for better visualization
Test #6 Price Analisis
It’s important to note that the price analysis is not a performance test per se but rather an analysis of each provider’s pricing structure to determine the value they offer per dollar. In this analysis, lower results indicate better value for your money.
This information can be useful for individuals or businesses choosing a cloud hosting provider based on their specific needs and budget.
For example, if your application requires a large amount of memory, but you are not as concerned about CPU or disk performance, then Linode may be the best option as they offer a lower price per GB of disk space.
On the other hand, if you are seeking raw performance in terms of CPU and memory, Vultr may be the best choice, as their Dollar/Performance price ratio is the lowest among the providers tested.
It’s important to note that the numbers presented only reflect the price/resource ratio of the specific virtual machines we tested. Your price/resource analysis may vary depending on the particular needs of your application and the available options provided by the cloud hosting providers.
Vultr Overall Performance
In the realm of cloud computing, performance is paramount. Therefore, it is no surprise that Vultr, a cloud hosting provider, has impressed many with its solid performance in various tests. Furthermore, Vultr has dominated almost all of these tests, demonstrating its superior technical capabilities and reliability.
However, it is worth noting that there were a couple of areas where Vultr did not perform as well, specifically in Disk Reads and Network Uploads. While these might be considered areas where improvement could be made, they were not significant enough to detract from the platform’s overall performance.
What is truly remarkable about Vultr’s performance is that it comes at a lower cost than DigitalOcean This means that Vultr can offer a more cost-effective solution to customers without compromising on quality or reliability. Despite not being the best performer in Disk Reads and Network Uploads, this cost advantage was significant enough to put Vultr first.
Overall, Vultr’s performance in the cloud hosting space is impressive, and its cost-effective solutions make them an attractive option for businesses and individuals alike. With their technical capabilities and reliability, Vultr is certainly a strong contender in the competitive world of cloud hosting.
DigitalOcean Overall Performance
DigitalOcean has demonstrated impressive performance in various tests, particularly in disk reads. This is an important factor for applications requiring high read speeds, such as web caches and databases with a high read-to-write ratio. In such scenarios, DigitalOcean is a solid option to consider.
With DigitalOcean’s excellent disk read performance, data retrieval becomes fast and efficient, allowing applications to run smoothly and with minimal lag time. This translates to better user experience and higher levels of customer satisfaction.
Moreover, DigitalOcean’s performance is not limited to disk reads alone. They have shown to be a strong performer in other areas, such as network speeds, making them a well-rounded cloud hosting provider.
It is important to note that performance is not the only factor to consider when choosing a cloud hosting provider. Other considerations, such as cost, scalability, and security, should also be considered. However, if your application requires high read speeds, DigitalOcean is a provider worth considering.
Linode Overall Performance
In our test round, Linode did not emerge as the strongest performer in performance metrics. However, they did offer certain advantages that might make them an attractive option for certain applications and use cases.
One of the main advantages of Linode is their pricing. They offered a cheaper virtual machine compared to the other providers in the test, making them an affordable option for budget-conscious people.
In addition, Linode’s storage capacity was greater than that the other providers, which could be beneficial for applications that require more storage than processing power. This is particularly useful for applications that deal with large amounts of data, such as data warehouses or big data analytics.
However, it is important to note that performance should not be the only factor to consider when choosing a cloud hosting provider. Factors such as reliability, scalability, and security are also crucial considerations. Nevertheless, Linode could be a viable option for applications requiring more storage than performance.
Vultr vs DigitalOcean vs Linode, Who is the winner?
After extensive testing and analysis, we have determined that Vultr is the overall winner among the three providers we tested. While DigitalOcean came in a close second, their impressive disk read speed comes at a higher price point.
On the other hand, Linode ended up in third and last place, with no notable advantages in terms of overall performance except for their generous storage space and lower pricing.
Overall, our testing and analysis suggest that Vultr provides the best combination of performance and value among the three providers. However, it’s worth noting that individual needs and preferences may vary, and it’s important to carefully consider the specific requirements of your application before choosing a cloud hosting provider.
How do they compare with us?
To compare our performance with Vultr, DigitalOcean, and Linode, we used virtual machines with dedicated cores and four vCPUs / 8 GB RAM. However, our lineup doesn’t have a similar model that matches these specifications. Our dedicated core models start with eight vCPU cores and 16 GB of memory, a significant difference. Therefore, we decided to use our Shared CPU model for comparison purposes.
Our Shared CPU model comes with four vCPUs and 8 GB of RAM, along with a 160 GB NVME Disk, all for the cost of $48, which includes backups, MailChannels, Server Management, and Proactive Monitoring.
RemarkableCloud CPU/Memory Performance
Despite not having a dedicated cores model similar to those of Vultr, DigitalOcean, and Linode, we could compare our $48.00/month Shared CPU 8GB/4 cores virtual machine with their dedicated cores models. In this comparison, we took second place, just after Vultr, but it is important to note that our virtual machine costs almost half of Vultr’s, making it a cost-effective solution.
RemarkableCloud Disk Performance
Regarding disk performance, we are pleased to report that our virtual machine took the top spot in disk write performance and a close second in read performance. This puts us in a good position compared to Vultr, DigitalOcean, and Linode.
RemarkableCloud WordPress Performance
We came out on top in the WordPress Performance test, partly due to our offer of high-frequency processors (3.00GHz or more). These processors are particularly effective for PHP and MySQL applications.
Based on the thorough performance testing and analysis conducted, it is evident that our Managed Cloud Servers offer a high level of performance and reliability compared to major players in the cloud hosting industry, such as Vultr, DigitalOcean, and Linode.
Our servers provide solid disk performance, first place in disk write and second place in read performance. Additionally, our WordPress performance test results demonstrate that our high-frequency processors (3.00GHz or more) work exceptionally well for PHP and MySQL applications.
Furthermore, our Managed Cloud Servers offer additional features such as 100% Managed service, Proactive Monitoring, MailChannels SMTP Outbound, Remote Backups, and daily snapshots, which provide our customers added value and peace of mind. This comes at a lower cost than similar Vultr, DigitalOcean, or Linode models.
The testing and analysis demonstrate that our Managed Cloud Servers is a highly competitive option for businesses and individuals seeking reliable, high-performance cloud hosting services.