Well...depends on the processes! Some small VPS's are so resourceless..they can't even compile programs..much less run them. I would say it depends on the processes you are talking about. Certainly..if the VPS has decent memory, storage and CPU allocations..you can write, compile, run and debug your own programs..or compile programs from source somebody else wrote.
We just had a major discussion on here about resource allocations..so..you may want to look at previous threads.
If you must have a control panel...you will limit the utility of the VPS...because so much of the resources are being used by the control panel. Also..the control panel may use several other programs..like MySQL..for example..and PHP..so if you were to upgrade these..the control panel would stop working altogether if you weren't careful.
Sadly..many people use VPS's to sell hosting. I don't advise this at all...most VPS's make terrible webservers if you have them do Cpanel as well.
I see VPS's primary use is to learn adminsitration...to be able..say..to be able to manage a dedicated server yourself if you started out on a shared account.
I see VPS's as wonderful testing grounds for programmers and hosts..to try different things..new things...different things...in a non-production yet cost-
effective environment. Mess it up? Fix it completely in minutes..completely start from scratch...you can't do that with a dedicated server.
I see the day coming when we will have VPS's that are completely turnkey.
Want a backup nameserver that has a subsystem to create and manage zone records through a little control panel? Click here.
Want a mail server with Exim, Boxtrapper, Virus scan, POP, IMAP and Horde for web access? Click here.
Want a test webserver with all three current versions of Apache and Lighthttp all running on different ports..yet on the same server..all ready to go with python, perl, php and mysql connectivity? click here.
Want to learn administration on a vps..yet be able to simulate users logging in and out..checking email...downloading webpages..and even simulate hackers?
That's what I see VPS's used for in the future.
Bryon L Harvey
Soil Relocation Engineer