Free hosting or free web hosting is a service that helps to host a web site free of cost. Normally these services will be advertisement supported and will be functional only for a limited period of time. The free hosting service providers will help you to provide sub domain to the website that you are intending to launch. The web hosting service that provides paid services will provide you a second level-domain along with the sub domain. This is the main difference between paid hosting service providers and paid service providers. Some of these free hosing service providers may undertake the responsibility of domain name registration. But such services will normally be expensive than other service providers.
Some of the free hosting service providers for the users a basic package without charging them and advanced packages with charges. The main advantage of availing the service of these groups is that you will be able to try the service of them for a few days to know how it performs before you upgrade to the second level domain.
Once you start your search for free hosting service providers you will be able to see a large number of free web host service providers such as FBhosting, GeoCites, Xoom and Hypermart in the net offering free hosting service for their users. As there are no uniform standards for setting up an account, you will have to follow the conditions prescribed by them if you want to avail their free service. Some of these service providers may let you have an actual domain name while some others require you to have a sub domain name under the domain of the service providers. While some of them permit the users to run their own CGI scripts some others do not entertain their users using CGI scripts. But when it comes to the space provided for the tree users almost all these sites are very particular for not to provide a space more than 5-10 GB. All of them will be very strict and inflexible when it comes to data transfer and you will be asked to have their advertisements on your website. Often advertisement windows pop ups may become annoying to the visitors of the websites and you may some times compelled to have the freedom provides by paid hosting service providers.
As it is not easy to find a free hosting provider who allow you to have an independent domain name many prefer to avail the service of paid hosting service providers. Those who permit the user to have free domain name of his own will definitely be asked to bear with the advertisements that they post on your website.
The other limitations of availing the service of free web hosting service providers include very small bandwidth, disability in hot linking files, file type restrictions and unavailability of time guarantee.
Still if you have no plan to use your web site more than posting a few pictures of your family members and pets or to post some scribbles on it, it always better to go for free hosting.