Root Access hosting provides you with a variety of capabilities and possibilities. You are no longer encumbered with access restrictions or “Root Access required” error messages. Virtually all configuration files are available for you to edit at will, enabling you to customize your server in a variety of ways. There are literally thousands of “open source” software initiates active on the web at any given time. Some are relatively small hobby projects serving a specific need while a few, such as the Apache web server, the scripting language PHP, and the MySQL database, are stable, full-featured packages used extensively across the Internet. Development of these projects often generates many new versions, patches, fixes, modules, etc. These updates occur with such frequency, and in such variation, that it becomes impractical for a web hosting company to upgrade or extend packages on a weekly basis. Occasionally, an upgrade will break existing configurations and need to be reversed or adapted to. Most web hosting providers will not update a package until they are sure no users are negatively affected by the upgrade.
With Root Access hosting, however, you are the only person affected by any upgrades or expansions. You can modify software source code, add modules or patches, and even upgrade to the latest version whenever you choose. You can install new software, experiment with new features, or help debug beta versions as long as you are prepared to reverse your changes or seek professional support should something go awry.
On a system level, Root Access hosting gives you authority to change file and directory ownership, a feature that can simplify user management. This makes it ideal for supporting shell users. You can also create root-level automated tasks, also known as “cron jobs”, to customize the self-management functions of your web hosting server. And, if you want to host your own custom services, you need Root Access to create processes that listen on ports below 1024.