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SugarCRM Deployment Options

by Katie Liesmann on February 8, 2017

4 minute read

One highly applauded feature of SugarCRM is the multiple hosting options it provides. For businesses who are drafting up a CRM requirements document, this guide should help you understand the differences between your SugarCRM deployment options and guide you towards the one that is best for your organization.

There are four options for hosting your SugarCRM deployment.

  • Sugar On Demand
  • Partner's Hosting Platform
  • Public Cloud
  • On-Site


Sugar-on-Demand is the hosting option provided by SugarCRM as a free option for anyone who purchases licensed versions of SugarCRM. This cloud-based option is best for people with an out-of-the-box system (no customizations) and who don’t have a large database or a large number of users.


  • No additional cost
  • Upgrades to new versions occur automatically--so you always are on the newest version of Sugar
  • Support & troubleshooting directly from SugarCRM
  • Hosting environment built specifically for Sugar


  • Upgrades to new versions occur automatically--which can put your customizations at risk
  • No access to your server or database for direct database queries or building integrations
  • Customizations take more time to build and test because all customizations must be in zip-file form and added into Sugar using the module loader
  • Troubleshooting must be done though SugarCRM support since you don’t have access to the server
  • Technical resources for your database are shared with other organizations using On-Demand, which can affect performance
  • No options to scale (only one tier of service available)

Hosting Through a Sugar Partner

W-Systems, along with other Sugar partners, offers hosting environments that you can deploy your Sugar instance on. This is a great option for someone who desires some specific security features or technical specifications. Or an organization that wants an environment built for Sugar but wants to retain a high level of access to their data. Each Sugar partner has a different platform and some may just simply outsource it to an existing public cloud service (see below). The benefits below are based on W-Systems’s hosting offerings.


  • Hosting environment built specifically for Sugar
  • Customizations and upgrades are less expensive because there is no additional time spent on getting access to log files or building module loadable packages
  • W-Systems can provide direct database access or backups
  • W-Systems maintains a service level agreement, which means we are responsible for downtime time and system issues
  • HIPAA and PCI compliant options available
  • Each Sugar instance has a dedicated environment
  • W-Systems will keep you up-to-date on new versions of Sugar as they are released and offers health checks to ensure a smooth upgrade


  • Upgrades to new versions do not occur automatically

Public Cloud

Public cloud hosting refers to services such as Amazon EC2, Rackspace, and Microsoft Azure. These are hosting services that are built to host any kind of software or database, and are not Sugar specific.


  • Low cost
  • Virtualized hardware is easy to scale
  • The flexibility of backend access
  • No physical hardware required
  • Many service companies to choose from


  • You are responsible for downtime and system issues
  • Scaling requires you to reconfigure your application
  • Public clouds have varying levels of security features and controls--which means you may have to configure security yourself
  • Upgrades to new versions do not occur automatically

On-site deployment is when an organization hosts their SugarCRM instance in space on their own hardware. On-site deployment is the costliest option but is sometimes the only solution compliant with corporate, PCI or HIPAA regulations.

On Site


  • Provides you with the most access to your data possible
  • Troubleshooting is easier because you have access to your data logs


  • Self-managed--which means it requires internal technical resources and knowledge
  • Most costly because you must purchase equipment and maintain it over time
  • Your responsibility if the server goes down
  • Version upgrades are not automatically performed

The hosting options for SugarCRM allow you to change your deployment type as your organization changes. You have the power to define how much access you need in your data, where you want your data hosted, what level of performance you desire, as well as what your budget is.

If you have any questions about SugarCRM deployment options, reach out to W-Systems here.

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