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Datacenter Proxies vs. Residential Proxies

Lukas Motiejunas

Lukas Motiejunas

2024-03-045 min read
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Although Residential and Dedicated Proxy IPs serve the same core functionality – hiding your IP address – they have quite a few differences. In today’s article, we’ll dive deep into each of these proxy types to help you choose which one is better for your business.   

Listen to this article or check our Spotify for more similar content. 

What are Datacenter Proxies?

Datacenter Proxies are proxies that are not affiliated with an Internet Service Provider (ISP). They come from a secondary corporation and provide you with completely private IP authentication and anonymity.

Datacenter Proxies for $2.50/IP

Get Datacenter Proxies for as little as $2.50 per IP via self-service. 

  • Zero hidden fees
  • 99.9% uptime 
  • Geo-restricted content access 
  • However, Datacenter Proxies usually come from data centers and cloud hosting services and are used by many at the same time. Since they are not listed as ISP providers, these IPs can already be flagged by some targets, and certain precautionary measures might be taken. But keep in mind that this is not the case with Oxylabs’ Datacenter Proxies. All Oxylabs’ Datacenter Proxies are private proxies and ensure little to no IP blacklisting.

    How Oxylabs Datacenter Proxies work

    How Oxylabs Datacenter Proxies work

    To learn more about Datacenter Proxies, see our Product Owner Nedas explain them in detail: 

    What are Residential Proxies?

    On the other hand, Residential Proxies use real IP addresses supplied by Internet Service Providers to homeowners. Since these IP addresses are attached to real, physical devices, using them makes it easy to replicate organic human behavior.  

    Residential Proxies for $8/GB 

    Get a Residential Proxies plan via our self-service dashboard starting at $8/GB.

  • Human-like scraping
  • 100M+ residential IPs 
  • Transparent sourcing policy
  • One of the most important aspects of Residential Proxies is ethicality. It’s essential that Residential Proxies are acquired in an ethical manner whereby homeowners give consent and are rewarded for participating in the proxy network. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case with other businesses: oftentimes, homeowners consent to misleading or confusing terms of service and end up being unaware their device is used in a proxy network.

    How Residential Proxies work

    How Residential Proxies work

    Using unethically-sourced Residential Proxies comes with various risks, including disrupted business operations, damaged reputation, and even potential legal battles. As a strong advocate of ethical business practices, Oxylabs aims to procure proxies in an ethical manner, allowing customers to avoid said risks.  

    We have a blog post explaining what are residential proxies – check it out for a more extensive overview.

    If you want to read more on the topic, check out our Oxylabs article, where we explain sourcing risks in detail. And, if you’re curious to learn more about Residential Proxies in general, see this video:

    Residential vs. Datacenter Proxies

    As you may have already picked up, the main difference between Datacenter and Residential Proxies lies in the source of the IP. Let’s have a closer look at the rest of the differences to fully understand how these proxies operate.  

    Residential Proxies:

    • Legitimate – because Residential Proxy IPs are provided by a real ISP, it makes them look real and legitimate. Whereas Datacenter Proxies, as mentioned earlier, are created in bulk and come from data centers and cloud server providers, so they can be easily detected and blacklisted if buying from an untrusted provider. Additionally, Residential Proxies can maintain the same IP if needed.

    • Lower risk of getting blacklisted due to the same reasons listed above, Residential proxies are harder to blacklist, ensuring a smooth scraping process. 

    • More expensive – Residential Proxies are higher to acquire and maintain, hence, they cost more.

    Datacenter Proxies:

    • Non-physical Datacenter Proxies are artificial, so websites can tell whether you’re connected to one. Nonetheless, these proxies still hide your true IP address and provide anonymity if purchased from a reputable provider. And, if you use a private Datacenter Proxy, getting banned or blacklisted shouldn’t come as an issue. One of the most popular use cases for these proxies is market research. 

    • Fast-paced Datacenter Proxies are known for their speed and high performance, making them a great option for when you need to complete a project in a short period of time. To ensure top-tier performance, it’s essential that you purchase them from a reputable proxy provider and get the technical know-how to use them. We offer detailed documentation and professional advice from our account managers. 

    • Cost-friendly When you’re buying in bulk or looking for a budget-friendly solution, Datacenter Proxies are the way to go. Compared to Residential Proxies, they’re much cheaper while still delivering security and fast speed if, of course, purchased from the right provider. 

    To sum up 

    Thanks to their ever-rotating IP addresses, residential proxies imitate organic user behavior and protect your online identity. Meanwhile, datacenter proxies provide high-performing IPs, allowing you to efficiently complete data-intensive tasks.

    Sourcing Block risk Pricing Speed
    Datacenter proxies Artificial IPs from datacenters Depends on the provider Budget-friendly Very high but depends on the provider
    Residential proxies Legit IPs from ISPs Very low Expensive High

    Which proxies should you choose?

    Now that you know the differences between residential and datacenter proxies, it’s time to narrow it down to which one’s better for your scraping needs. 

    • Priorities. When comparing residential proxies against datacenter ones, it all comes down to whether you need high security, or your top priority is a high speed, and you simply need to shield your IP address. 

    Residential proxies don’t leave a footprint and won’t trigger any security alarms, so they’re great for collecting identity-sensitive public data or large amounts of data in general. Many businesses use residential proxies for review monitoring or ad verification.

    In most cases, compared to datacenter proxies, residential ones cover more geo-locations. However, if you’re looking to scrape public data in a precise location, you should find out whether a provider offers proxies that reside in that region. 

    • Technical knowledge. On the other hand, datacenter proxies work very well if you have know-how about the proxy technology itself, and choose private datacenter proxies – this way, you’ll be able to cover your footprint properly.

    Oxylabs offer private datacenter proxies, step-by-step tutorials, and help from account managers to help you complete scraping projects smoothly. Businesses choose these proxies from all over the globe, from Brazil and US to Australia, for use cases like email protection, market research, phishing attacks prevention, and more. 

    • Alternative option – ISP proxies. Finally, you may also want to consider an ISP proxy which combines features of datacenter and residential proxies. To find out more, read our article on ISP vs. residential proxies.

    Residential and Datacenter Proxies: dedicated vs. shared

    At Oxylabs, we offer both Residential and Datacenter Proxies as shared and as dedicated.

    The process of purchasing Dedicated Datacenter Proxies is straightforward – you can do it yourself via our self-service dashboard. Starting at 50 USD/month (or 2.5 USD per IP) these proxies are made to handle large-scale data tasks. As for Shared Datacenter Proxies, they are the most cost-efficient proxies that Oxylabs offers (0.65 USD/GB if you get the 50 USD Micro plan.) While they’re used by multiple people, they still have the most important features of a Datacenter Proxy. Now, as for Residential Proxies, they’re all shared by their nature.

    Conclusion

    Both residential and datacenter Proxies shield your IP address; nevertheless, residential proxies are more secure, as the websites you visit have a harder time detecting them. But that doesn’t mean that datacenter proxies are not worth looking into – from the right supplier, they’ll provide enough security, work faster and make a cost-friendly solution. Whichever way you decide to go, note that you can buy these proxies in bulk.

    Want to find out more about our Residential Proxies or backconnect proxies? Or maybe read up on other proxy types such as Static IPs or IPv6 proxies? Our blog has many detailed posts on all things proxies. From web scraping tools to using a Python script to scrape public data from websites, we got you covered!

    People also ask

    What is the difference between a residential proxy and a datacenter proxy?

    Residential proxies come from ISPs, mirroring real locations for higher legitimacy and anonymity, albeit at a higher cost. Meanwhile, datacenter proxies originate from data centers, offering faster speeds and lower costs but with potentially lower anonymity. Coming from legitimate providers, both types of proxies are great for web scraping, so the final choice solely depends on your needs in terms of the budget, speed, etc.

    What is the difference between a datacenter and an ISP proxy?

    ISP proxies are a hybrid of both datacenter and residential proxies. Datacenter proxies are artificially made and hosted on a server. Meanwhile, ISP proxies are, too, artificially made and hosted on a server; however, they are also registered with internet service providers (like residential proxies.) As a result, websites are less likely to block ISP proxies. 

    What is a datacenter proxy server?

    A datacenter proxy is an intermediary server, offering users the ability to route their internet traffic through a separate IP address. Unlike residential proxies, datacenter proxies are not associated with physical locations or internet service providers. Datacenter proxies typically offer fast speeds and high performance, making them ideal for traffic-intensive web scraping tasks.

    What is the difference between residential and private proxies?

    Residential proxies are IP addresses assigned by ISPs to homeowners, offering legitimacy and higher anonymity, as they mimic real users accessing the internet from residential networks. Private proxies, on the other hand, can be sourced from data centers providing users with dedicated IP addresses for exclusive use. 

    What are the other types of proxies?

    Categorization of proxies can be based on protocol (HTTP(S) and SOCKS5), access (private and shared), and many other aspects. A few most common proxy types are: 

    • Mobile proxies, which offer IPs from real mobile devices.  

    • HTTP(S) proxies can be referred to as high-performance content filters that traffic flows through to reach you.

    • SOCKS5 proxies – proxies that use the SOCKS protocol for traffic-intensive tasks, such as content streaming or P2P sharing. A SOCKS5 proxy can also be an additional feature that VPN providers offer.

    Are proxy locations important?

    Yes, the area where a proxy server is located matters. Some online content is geo-restricted, meaning that it might be displayed only to, for example, USA proxies and not to any other region-based server.

    How are datacenter IP blocks different?

    Datacenter IPs come from the same subnet, getting one address blocked will often mean that many others get blocked as well.

    About the author

    Lukas Motiejunas

    Lukas Motiejunas

    Lead Account Manager

    Lukas Motiejunas is a Lead Account Manager at Oxylabs, and he places a strong personal interest in the market research field. Mainly, in the merge of business sector and digital tools utilization to distinguish the most effective practices to carry out automated market research operations. So if you have any questions relating to market research, he’s your guy to answer them. Lukas believes that he has a hidden talent to be a great chef, although rumor has it, he uses the smoke alarm as a timer.

    All information on Oxylabs Blog is provided on an "as is" basis and for informational purposes only. We make no representation and disclaim all liability with respect to your use of any information contained on Oxylabs Blog or any third-party websites that may be linked therein. Before engaging in scraping activities of any kind you should consult your legal advisors and carefully read the particular website's terms of service or receive a scraping license.

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