What is bandwidth?
What is bandwidth at all? Why does it matter when signing up for a web hosting account?
Bandwidth = The amount of data passing through a connection over a given time. It is usually measured in bps (bits-per-second) or Mbps (Megabits per Second).
Many web hosts use this term (bandwidth) in place of (data) transfer allowance. The actual data transfer allowance is important to you as the hosting client. Transfer allowance is the amount of data that is actually allowed to be transferred between the server (your website in this case) and the client(s) who access your website when browsing the Internet.
How can you measure the amount of transfer allowance you will approx. need for your website? To find out what your transfer requirements are, you will need to look at the actual data transfer that your website will create.
For example, if you have a website with 5 pages each is about 50 kb in size. If a visitor of your website views one page, about 1 x 50 kb of data transfer is being used. If the person views all 5 pages then you get 5 x 50 kb or 250 kb of data transfer being used. Now imagine your website gets 100 visitors a day who all look at your 5 pages. 100 X 250 KB = 25,000 KB (approx. 24.41 Megs). Now put this into 30 days of a month and you get the approx. of data transfer allowance (for the matter: bandwidth) you will need to operate your website.
Keep in mind, that you should allow enough room to grow and that there is actually more data being transferred when you use email and/or FTP on the same account. Uploading your website uses part of your data transfer allowance.
Unlimited bandwidth or data transfer allowance – this is good, isn’t it?! “I see this all the time when searching for the best deal in web hosting!”
No, it is not good. There is no such thing like unlimited bandwidth or data transfer. Bandwidth is limited by hardware. A ‘pipe’ only has a certain size (throughput). It can’t just grow in size when required. Also – a web host as to pay for the data transfer being used. He will be charged by his upstream provider (AT&T, Sprint, Level3, etc.). Try to find an ‘unlimited’ offer for web hosts on their websites. You won’t find it. There is always a price tag on data transfer and bandwidth. Stay away from an ‘unlimited’ offer. If you really start using more and more bandwidth, the web host will you cut you off at one point because you start eating up his revenue.