29 October 2015

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How Much Does Server Colocation Cost?

Data Center by Tom Collins

The decision to move your data servers off-site and rely on a colocation center for maintenance and security shouldn't be made lightly. At the end of the day, one of the greatest concerns often comes down to budgets.

The question of financial viability is a crucial one when it comes to any significant changes to the infrastructure of your business. Exactly what does reliable colocation cost?

There is no exact answer to that question, as each company has different needs. In this article, we'll look at seven factors that impact the costs of your colocation service. That way, you will be able to understand better the cost vs. benefits ratio for the kind of service you need.

Server Colocation Cost Pricing Factors

Colocation can mean very different things to different service providers, and not every colocation company uses the same standards of service. Moreover, different tenants have different needs, and these specifications can significantly impact pricing parameters.

One Size Doesn’t Fit All

Understanding the many factors that go into the colocation fee schedule, will help you make the right choice. Let’s take a look at some of the top factors that have been known to influence colocation pricing:

Rack Capacity

For all of the focus put on servers’ technical capacities (storage, memory, speed and so on), it’s easy to forget that physical space comes into play. One of the most fundamental, yet critical, contributors to colocation costs is the question of how much room your servers will occupy.

Most servers don't take up a vast amount of space – usually only a few inches in height. But when you have many servers, as colocation centers do, the need to have sufficient space for the servers is real. The price of leasing that space is taken into consideration.

Most colocation centers adjust the price for their services according to the amount of space that you rent.

Hardware and Upkeep

Even if you already own power, cooling and telecommunications hardware to support your servers in-house, required maintenance and upgrading can be costly. A colocation center’s fees include the use of the facility’s infrastructure hardware, its upkeep, and renewal.

These costs are part of the expenses you’ll incur as a colocation tenant. However, the total spend is likely to be far lower than keeping your servers on your own premises.

Power

Electricity is the foundational requirement to keep your server running. Both primary and failsafe power solutions will be factored into your colocation costs.

Data centers that have less access to reliable power and backup power systems may be cheaper to attract customers. But when your data is business-critical, spending a little extra for this basic resource and sufficient backup resources is more than worth the expense.

Speed

High-speed Internet connectivity also incurs costs. The last thing anyone needs when trying to access data or apps remotely is to experience frustrating, or potentially business-damaging bottlenecks to connectivity and transfer speeds.

On the other hand, by providing telecommunications services to many companies in the colocation center, costs are usually much less expensive and more reliable than keeping your servers in-house.

Bandwidth

Accessing your database and computing environment remotely, easily, and without hiccup, requires a significant amount of bandwidth to facilitate packet flow. A reliable colocation center will provide more than sufficient bandwidth availability.

Security

One of the greatest benefits of a colocation center is the increased level of security. That is, increased physical security, and better cyber protection as well for denial of service attacks.

The physical plant – the actual colocation center – is monitored around the clock to make sure no intruder can gain physical access to the equipment that houses your data. Most facilities will also have video security for a record of who is accessing your equipment.

Redundant Backups

It almost goes without saying, but the redundancy built into the colocation center is one of the single greatest advantages to moving your servers there. Reputable colocation centers duplicate their backup solutions so that, even if something goes wrong with the first backup, another safety net is in place to restore the data.

That redundancy covers everything from backing up your data to making sure that there is an extra generator to support data and climate control systems in the case of a power outage, for example.

What You’ll Spend on Colocation

Opting for colocation is a sound decision, but it’s also one that can be overwhelming. Even when you know the move is the best choice for your company from a financial and server dependability standpoint, it’s important that you make your decision from a position of strength and understanding.

Feel free to get in touch with the colocation experts at Atlantech. They’ll walk you through the factors and cost vs. benefits analysis to show how the various costs will apply to your company and its needs.





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t-tom-collins

About the author:

Tom Collins (Twitter, LinkedIn) - is the Director of Enterprise Sales & Marketing for Atlantech Online. He has over 20 years of professional experience in the Internet Service Provider industry and is known for translating technology into positive results for business. A native of Washington, DC, a graduate from University of Maryland (degrees in Government & Politics and Secondary Education), Tom is also a five-time Ironman finisher.

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