As businesses search for options to store their data, they need to know what options are available to them. Many options exist, such as colocation, virtual private servers, and shared web hosting.
Each option offers different features, but colocation is one that may need a bit more explanation for those who are new to the concept of off-site data storage. Businesses in Orlando, Tampa, Lakeland, and other areas of Florida should consider colocation for a number of reasons.
What Exactly Is Colocation
Colocation is the term for a data center facility where businesses can rent their own space for servers as well as other hardware. These servers store their data in a secure area that provides redundant power, redundant cooling systems, networking, and physical security.
To provide the ability to connect to your servers, the data center can provide a direct connection to the carrier of your choice (carrier-neutral) or can provide the internet connection, which can be from a dedicated internet service provider (ISP) or blended from multiple ISPs.
Colo Solutions is a carrier-neutral data center based in downtown Orlando, FL.
What Is a Colocation Data Center
A colocation data center is a building that houses rentable racks and cabinets that store your equipment. The building itself has high physical security to protect the equipment inside. The data center facility has redundant power, meaning the power system is backed up by uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) and generators. So if the electricity at the data center goes out, your servers are still powered by other means.
Redundant cooling systems are also provided to not only keep equipment cool but also at the right humidity to protect them.
What Are the Advantages of Using Colocation
There are several advantages to choosing colocation as your method of data storage. Colocation reduces your on-site IT costs, such as the cost to build and operate your own dedicated data center. Off-site data centers are also incredibly reliable with their redundant power and cooling capabilities, and they provide excellent security to protect your data. It’s also easy to expand the requirements of your network when it’s needed.
The Differences Between Shared Web Hosting, Virtual Private Servers, & Colocation
Shared web hosting, virtual private servers, and colocation all share the same purpose, which is to provide storage space, manage data, and keep your business applications accessible through the Internet or a private intranet.
Shared web hosting is a similar concept to renting an apartment. You pay for space but have no control over what goes on around that space. The only control you have is what goes on within your small space on the single server, and it’s only what the provider enables you to control. This is typically quite restrictive, much like a landlord placing restrictions on pets. Shared hosting can restrict the types of programs or content you have, as well as throttle traffic and storage.
With virtual private servers, it’s a bit like renting a house. The data center provides the equipment, installation, handles equipment failures, and backups—just as a landlord would handle any sort of repairs needed on a house. You are only responsible for configuring your server and the upkeep and maintenance on your server instance, but not the actual equipment.
Finally, colocation is much like owning your own condominium. You have complete control over your space and are responsible for everything inside your rack or cabinet, including the equipment, installation, configuration, upkeep/maintenance, equipment failures, etc. But the data center still supplies remote “eyes and hand” support services and is responsible for the shared common elements such as the delivery of power, connectivity, UPSs, HVAC, security, and more.
When evaluating whether colocation is your best option, you need to weigh various factors including your needs such as compute and storage requirements, compliance requirements, latency requirements, and of course, TCO or total cost of ownership.
Are you looking for colocation services for your business?
At Colo Solutions, we provide colocation services for many businesses across the areas of Orlando. Tampa, Lakeland, and more. We also service the entire United States. Give us a call today at (407) 210-2480 to talk about your business’ data storage needs!