What is Server Colocation?

Colocation is the main alternative for small companies that do not have the resources or the time to have both private servers and the IT team needed to maintain them. Essentially, colocation is when a small companies owns a server and takes it to a web hosting company’s location. Upon arriving at the location, the server will be plugged into the rack and will have access to the rack’s bandwidth. An IP address will be provided for the server. The main difference between server colocation and normal web hosting is that the server is owned by the client, rather than the hosting company.

Advantages of Colocation

  • Cost of Bandwidth
    The biggest advantage that is associated with colocation is that the cost of bandwidth is lower. Colocation tends to cost slightly more than regular website leasing, but usually colocation centers have much greater bandwidth and better redundancy with regards to connections to the network.
  • Better Outage Protection
    Colocation centers have power generators in the case that the power goes out, whereas companies that host servers in their offices do not often have those generators. A company that uses a colocation center’s services is paying for those generators and the peace of mind that they provide. There is a very low likelihood that a company’s website will fail in the case of a pwoer outage.
  • More Control Over the Server
    Should changes need to be made to the server, such as an upgrade, the client that owns the server can make those changes immediately and not have to wait for the provider to take action. The same principle applies to the software that the system is running. If the software should stop meeting the needs of the client, it can be changed or upgraded without delay.
  • No Need to Move the Server
    Should a company change locations, there is no need to move the server. The website will be able to remain fully operational throughout the move.
  • Additional Security
    The environment in which the server is stored at a colocation center is often much more secure than the environment it would be in if it were stored at a client’s headquarters.
  • No IT Team Needed
    When a client pays for a server to be stored at a colocation center, he or she is also has the choice to pay for the server to be maintained. If the client chooses to do so, the need for a private IT team is removed, saving the client money.

 

Disadvantages of Colocation

  • Hard to Find
    Colocation centers are not as common as normal website hosting companies. It is important to find on nearby so that it can be easily upgraded or reconfigured as needed. The easiest place to find colocation centers is near large cities.
  • More Expensive
    Colocation is unquestionably more expensive than website hosting, especially since the maintenance services need to be paid for separately, or maintenance needs to be performed by the client on a regular basis.
  • Limited Physical Access
    Because the server is not on the physical premises of the company, it is more difficult to access. Should the server need to be maintained, a representative from the client company will need to travel to the colocation center during its business hours, which can be inconvenient for many companies.
  • Pay for Maintenance
    If the company should move too far away from the colocation center, it will either have to move the server or pay for maintenance to be performed.

Colocation Benefits

 

 

Web Hosting Server Colocation Tips

Companies looking for an alternative form of server hosting might be interested in colocation. This is a money-saving option that offers more features than traditional server hosting. It solves one of the most common problems related to hosting by making it possible to upgrade the hardware. In this situation, the host manages the server and takes care of all the maintenance and updates it needs. Since the facility does not own the server, there are some additional challenges, but a few tips will come in handy.

Understanding the benefits of colocation is easy when looking at the actual operation of the facility. A server colocation company rents space in their building to enterprises that need website hosting service. This includes secure rack space or cages, backup power supplies, redundant cooling systems, and 24 hour monitoring. These features are in addition to a direct connection to the Internet and a full-time IT staff. While these features are comparable to hosts that offer dedicated servers, there are distinct pricing advantages for the service since the client still owns the servers. An important tip for finding the right service is to shop around for the right combination of features and prices.

 

Because a variety of different clients will have a range of equipment installed in the facility, physical security of the building is crucial.

 

This means having multiple controls in place and limited access points. These often include bio-metric measures that check fingerprints or do retinal scans. Choosing a service that takes security seriously is essential for any organization that will be storing or processing any sensitive data. It would be a shame for a company’s data to be compromised by someone gaining physical access either accidentally or on purpose.

Another key tip is to take full advantage of ownership of the server. If the hosting company is local, this is an easy task. A server can be removed from the rack if its owner wants to make physical adjustments to the hardware, or more likely, they want to upgrade parts. More traditional web hosts rarely change or upgrade the hardware they offer and add extra charges for more robust features. Renting a server and paying extra every month for RAM that improves performance is not particularly cost-effective.

A tip that will help more companies get a better value out of this system, is to take full advantage of virtualization. It is likely to be more less expensive and more efficient in the long run to choose a top quality server with as much RAM and memory the company can budget for network resources. This is because a single server can support multiple virtual private servers to replace the array of servers a dedicated host offers. This is a powerful solution that offers significant flexibility.

Companies that need multiple servers will appreciate the strength and flexibility of colocation services. Even if the server has to be shipped to a remote location to get the right combination of features, this is a valuable resource that gives companies more control and options. These are effective elements for business operations and are worth the attention of every company.

Also Check Out How a Server Colocation Can Benefit Small Business Owners