IAAS or Infrastructure As A Service refers to the modern trend of outsourcing one’s data backup, storage, computing resources and/or security to external service providers. There are numerous benefits to doing this. For example, it is cheaper for a company to outsource its data storage needs rather than build the infrastructure themselves, especially if data storage and processing is not their core business. The implications of this, however, are that at one point or another, all companies have to choose an IAAS provider and most decision makers are usually stumped by this. In this post, we try to explain some of the factors that one should look at when choosing an IAAS provider.
Think About The Tier System
When selecting an IAAS provider, a decision maker must carefully assess the provider’s infrastructure. This is because a vast majority of data failure occurs due to infrastructure problems; whether in their design or operation. Look carefully at the design of their physical facilities and in particular the built-in redundancies that have been put in place by the service provider. There is a tier system for IAAS providers that was created by the Standard Uptime Institute that helps grade IAAS providers in terms of their infrastructure designs. The standard looks at elements such as fault tolerance and duplication of critical systems, all of which are important factors in determining the reliability of an IAAS provider’s infrastructure.
Having looked at the reliability of the IAAS provider’s infrastructure, the next thing to look at is the physical security of the facility. Remember that by signing up with them, you are committing sensitive data into their hands and therefore the physical security of the facility where this data will be stored matters greatly. There are numerous security measures that can be put in place to ensure that the facility is safe. These include fingerprint ID scanners for authorized personnel and other biometric measures. An assessment of physical security, however, is usually dependent on the data you are proposing to store. The more sensitive the data, the more focus you should put on the security systems around the facility.
Study the Service Level Agreement
The Service Level agreement or SLA is the agreement that sets out the contract between you and the IAAS provider. In the world of data, such an agreement will include factors such as availability, response time of the data center as well as the network bandwidth. These are important because they determine how efficiently the data center will process your data and what you can expect from the IAAS provider. To benchmark the SLA, it is recommended that you use the standards set out in the ISO/IEC 19086 to get an idea of what the industry standards are. Obviously, if the SLA is way below the set industry standards, you might consider renegotiating or moving on to a vendor with better terms.
In a nutshell, these are some of the factors that you should consider when selecting an IAAS provider. It is important to remember that the data these providers hold could make or break your enterprise so it is worthwhile to spend time comparing different providers and also getting a sense of what they can actually deliver from their existing customers. At ANEXIO, we provide IAAS services to clients from a wide variety of fields. We offer fast, secure and responsive data center solutions so talk to us today and find out more.