Colocation data centers can provide your business a convenient and efficient way to maintain your infrastructure. Instead of investing time and money to build your own data center, you can rent space for your servers and computer hardware. This can save you a lot of headaches.
The global colocation market is expected to be $51.8 billion by 2020. Even with the dominance of cloud computing, a lot of businesses are still planning to use colocation data centers. However, it’s important to understand the advantages and disadvantages of using a colocation facility. It will help you make more informed decisions.
Pros of Colocation Hosting
Economies of Scale: Due to the large scale of colocation data centers, you will benefit from sharing space and power. It can be more cost-effective than owning your own data centers. If you are in a geographic region where real estate prices are high, colocation data centers can provide affordable space.
More Redundancies: Colocation data centers provide service to a wide range of customers. In order to accommodate the needs, these facilities implement multiple solutions. Generally, you will get multiple ISPs with different kinds of bandwidth support. The colocations provide you an array of options. You have access to other solutions if one of them fails.
Better Uptime Reliability: Colocations have to meet service-level agreements (SLAs) to stay in business. It creates a standard. When you are dealing with your own data center, there’s a potential for the rules getting lax after a while. But if a colocation fails to meet the SLAs, one or more customers will raise the issue. These facilities have to always stay on their toes. As a result, you will see better uptime reliability. According to an ITIC survey, 98% enterprise-level companies say a single hour of data center downtime costs their companies $100,000, while 81% companies say it costs them more than $300,000. For this reason, colocation uptime reliability can potentially save businesses a lot of money.
Scalability: In your own data center, you are stuck with the initial plan for the facility. If you need to expand, you have to rebuild. But in a colocation, there is always changing tenancy that can provide you with opportunities to scale your infrastructure easily.
Increased Security: Colocation facilities provide multiple layers of physical and technical security. Better security staff, cameras and technology provides a higher level of protection than what you can afford on your own.
Expert 24/7 Support: When a problem happens in your data center, you are solely responsible for it. For small businesses that have limited infrastructure experience, it can be a huge challenge. Colocation providers offer experts who can help you 24×7. It can be a lifesaver in a crisis.
Cons of Colocation Hosting
Possibly Higher Costs: Colocation providers are in the business to make a profit. Even though you will save money on energy and setup costs, the provider service charges can add up. You might end up paying more than your own data centers. So, before you dive in, conduct a thorough cost-benefit analysis to figure out if the price is right for you. Also, colocation pricing can fluctuate depending on bandwidth usage, market demand, power regulation changes, etc. Take that into account.
Less Control: You are not the owner of the data center, meaning you’ll have to follow rules and regulations that could restrict your access to certain times and days. Accessibility might make it harder for you to make changes to your servers. It might slow down your upgrade and maintenance processes.
In short, colocation data centers have some great benefits. If you are a data center manager, this can make life easier and simpler. But you might have to relinquish a little bit of control.