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Comparison Of Different Proxy Types : Datacenter, Residential, Free, Shared

· 4 min read

Proxies are fundamental to any developer's programming arsenal. They're a way to access data and information that would otherwise be blocked or unavailable. Even though they can be hard to set up, they're a necessary component to web scraping success. Many problems can be avoided or remedied by understanding proper proxy usage. This is why it's important to learn what to look for and what to avoid when choosing a proxy service. Here are some of the most common issues that come with choosing a particular proxy service, and the ways in which each problem can be avoided.

Free Proxies

When searching for a public proxy list, people typically start with Google. A Free Proxy, or Public Proxy, is a publicly available server that can be used as a substitute for your normal connection. However, these servers also have a dark side. Because they’re publicly accessible, anyone can use them to mask their identity and access restricted websites. By masking your IP, a proxy server intended to conceal your location does not work. This is because clients employ scripts that bypass proxy servers to determine the user's location. Additionally, some sites log connections and activity to defeat the purpose of using a proxy in the first place.

You shouldn’t use public scrapers for any significant progress. They rarely work due to constant downtime, unreliable proxies and sites blacklisting them quickly. Furthermore, you won’t make much progress scraping websites if you use public scrapers.

Dedicated Proxies

A Dedicated Proxy or Private Proxy server is a ladder rung higher than Shared Proxies. It's used exclusively by one individual at a time and offers several advantages over Shared Proxies. First, Dedicated Proxy and Private Proxy servers offer stability and reliability due to guaranteed personal use or the fact that only one user is active at any given time. This prevents issues with IPs being blocked or blacklisted randomly like Shared Proxies have seen in the past.

Since sites can easily block standard IP forwarding proxies like this one without much difficulty, we’re still in private browsing territory. Plus, API requests like this one can still be identified and blocked by a site.

Residential Proxies

Because the Residential Proxy is assigned to physical devices by an ISP, every time it connects to the internet it does so as a genuine device. It's incredibly difficult for websites to track and block Residential Proxies due to their high uptime and the fact that they tend to stay off block lists for a long time. Because of this, utilizing a Residential Proxy for web scraping is considered one of the most secure ways of scraping data from websites due to their high uptime and hard-to-track nature.

Proxy residential usage can cause sites to bog down with Captcha requests. Additionally, some users can run into speed issues due to their IP location.

Datacenter Proxies

Essentially, these are data centers with large amounts of available IP addresses that can be used and discarded quickly. This makes them useful for proxy services that require a high volume of available IP addresses. These data centers have fast quick networks; thus, their proxy speeds are fast. However, due to the fact that they’re created this way, all the IPs hosted in a data center share the same sub-network. This makes it easy for sites to ban websites hosted in these data centers due to the shared sub-network.

Proxies can be useful when used properly, but they have limitations that must be considered. Because of their large volume, they can be a great asset when performing specific tasks. However, there are other ways to use proxies that aren’t banned that we can take advantage of.

Rotating Proxies

In order to maintain a clean reputation, it's important to regularly switch your proxy IPs. This helps you avoid being flagged as suspicious. Using a rotating proxy service like the one provided by our service alleviates this issue. It allows you to use different proxy IPs for every request; each time you make one, a new one is chosen. This protects your IPs from blacklisting or blocking by masking the heavy traffic they exhibit.

While there are many more issues to consider than just proxy servers, we hope this helps you understand the basics of how proxies function online so you can make more informed choices.