Summary of servers where Node.js can be used

Node.js is widely used for everything from servers to application development and static site generators, and we have compiled a list of servers that can use Node.js and how to choose one.

Modified at: 2023.12.15Posted at: 2022.2.21

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What is Node.js?

Node.js is an execution environment that extends Javascript so that it can be used outside of the browser. it runs on Chrome's V8 JavaScript engine.

About Node.js

The number of developers using it has been increasing in the past few years because it enables the creation of server-side programs and applications using the same syntax as the JavaScript used on the front end.

What servers can Node.js be used on?

To use Node.js, Node.js must be installed on the server side.

Node.js is available for Windows and macOS as well as Linux, which is often employed in servers, so it can be used on almost any server as long as it can be installed on the server.

Also note that the server required for Node.js may differ depending on whether it is used only for building or for running Node.js programs in real time on the server.

ServerNode.js Execution EnvironmentNode.js Real-Time ServerNode.js Installation
Shared Rental Server---
◎VPS◎(installation required)◎(installation & configuration required)
PaaS◎(depends on platform)◎(depends on platform)-
Dedicated Server◎(installation required)◎(installation & configuration required)

Node.js is available on all VPS

All VPSs, which are virtual private servers, can use Node.js because Node.js itself can be installed on the server.

If you use a VPS like Digital Ocean, which provides an OS template with Node.js installed, you can start using a Node.js server in a few minutes.

PaaS is available for some services

PaaS, which provides an application execution environment, has services available for Node.js. Heroku and Digital Ocean's [App Platform](https://www.digitalocean .com/products/app-platform), while cloud services such as Google App Engine and [Azure App Service](https Node.js is supported by://

It is important to note that while some vendors can use Node.js when building sites, others cannot run Node.js on the server side.

Be careful when choosing a server, as your options will vary depending on which one you use.

Dedicated servers can also use Node.js.

Naturally, dedicated servers that occupy a single physical server can also use Node.js. The cost of installing and managing it yourself is the same as with VPS.

In the case of dedicated servers, an OS image with Node.js already installed may not be provided, so you will have to install it yourself.

Node.js is not available on shared rental servers.

Node.js is not available on shared rental servers that host WordPress and PHP sites.

Some shared rental server services allow you to log in to the server via SSH, but note that just because SSH is available does not mean you can use Node.js, since Node.js cannot be installed on the OS.

If you want to use Node.js at a price as low and easy as a shared rental server, it is best to use a PaaS service.

The price will be higher than a shared rental server, but the cost is higher when you consider the hassle of running a Node.js application by simply deploying it.

In that sense, PaaS could be called a Node.js version of a shared rental server.

Which server is best for running Node.js?

PaaS is best for a good balance of ease and stability

Building a Node.js execution environment is not that difficult if you have knowledge of servers, but if you build it well, including memory management and security, it can be a painstaking task if you are not familiar with it.

In this sense, PaaS offers a good balance between the "ease" of simply deploying and the stability of being on an environment provided by the vendor.

The disadvantages of PaaS are price and the lack of flexibility in the Node.js execution environment.

Compared to VPS, the unit price per spec is higher, so PaaS is inferior to VPS in terms of cost performance when compared only in terms of price.

In addition, PaaS uses the Node.js environment prepared by the vendor, so the degree of freedom in selecting the Node.js version is somewhat reduced.

If you need high specs at low cost, choose VPS.

On the other hand, the greatest advantage of using Node.js on a VPS is cost performance. For the same price, VPS is the best in terms of cost performance because you can use a server with higher specs than VPS.

Also, since you install Node.js yourself with a VPS, you can freely choose the version of Node.js to be used.

However, unlike PaaS, you will need knowledge to build a stable and secure Node.js environment, and it will take time to prepare for the ease of "just deploy it.

If you already have knowledge of Node.js, there is no problem, but if you do not have knowledge or skills in server security and stable operation as well as Node.js, it is better to choose PaaS.

Translated with (free version)