Well, depending on your email provider, you can often define several different email addresses that are all delivered into the same mailbox. For example, it’s not at all uncommon for various standard email addresses like “[email protected]”, “[email protected]”, “[email protected]” and so on, to all be delivered into the same mailbox – the mailbox of the administrator for that mail server. I actually go so far as to have many email addresses on my “askleo.com” domain, but only one account. All the email on that domain is delivered to that single account. (I then use rules and filters to sort the email, based on what address it was sent to.)
Your choice of server operating system will most likely come down to which tools you prefer to use. For example, if you want to build websites with WordPress or you need to use advanced scripting like Ruby or Python, Linux is usually the best option. But if your project requires ASP.NET or other Microsoft-based technologies, you should probably select Windows.
The bottom line is that if you have paid money to own a domain then you should, at the least, buy from a domain registrar that offers email forwarding for their accounts (we prefer Namecheap who do include free email forwarding). You can also create a domain email address from the cpanel given to you by your hosting providers—they’ll also provide at least one free email address for your account.
Ultimately, it boils down to a balance between cost, features, and risk. It's always tempting to simply jump on the lowest-cost solution, but the fact that email is ubiquitous keeps this from being the smart play. It's nearly impossible to escape using it, which means your users, your customers, and the guts of your business have all come to depend on it in different ways. You need to discover those ways, evaluate them, and then choose a service that either meets or improves on them. This takes time, discussion with your IT staff, and some investigation; these are steps you don't want to skip. Otherwise, you'll pay for it later.
Even businesses with dedicated on-site IT staff have seen the wisdom of moving their email service. The advantages include per-person cost averages, cutting-edge security, cheap email storage, and simple ease of connectivity and deployment. While these advantages hold true for most organizations, there are not only exceptions but also hidden "gotchas" you should look for before selecting a cloud-hosted email provider.
Availability, price and employee familiarity often determines which operating systems are offered on dedicated servers. Variations of Linux and Unix (open source operating systems) are often included at no charge to the customer. Commercial operating systems include Microsoft Windows Server, provided through a special program called Microsoft SPLA. Red Hat Enterprise is a commercial version of Linux offered to hosting providers on a monthly fee basis. The monthly fee provides OS updates through the Red Hat Network using an application called Yum. Other operating systems are available from the open source community at no charge. These include CentOS, Fedora Core, Debian, and many other Linux distributions or BSD systems FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD.
If you’re a startup or a small- to medium-sized business, iPage offers low-cost options that are great for small or growing companies on a budget. With your free domain name registration, you get hosting for unlimited domains and emails, plus $150 in free advertising credits, should you need to market a new website as well. The host’s email tools include webmail, autoresponders, email forwarding, and security features like SPAM filters and virus protection.
Microsoft offers software licenses through a program called the Service Provider License Agreement. The SPLA model provides use of Microsoft products through a monthly user or processor based fee. SPLA software includes the Windows Operating System, Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft SharePoint and shoutcast hosting, and many other server based products.
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