Colocation is one of the top data center solutions one can consider andrefers to a company providing data storage space and other related equipment to other companies, which will rent them for different purposes. The use of colocation services has grown in the recent years, due to the wide range of benefits including reducing the cost of doing business.
If you run a business of any kind where you have to work with and handle a lot of data, investing in a colocation service is a good idea since it can yield many benefits for you. In fact, you will find that the costs are far outweighed by the benefits particularly in the long term. When choosing a colocation provider, the top things you need to look out for include:
Know What They have to Offer
In order to get good value for money, a colocation service provider should not only provide storage services. In fact, it should provide a little more than this, either at subsidized rates or for free. This way, you can make use of the colocation services to the full benefit of the company. Always remember that the extras you look for from a colocation provider should actually benefit your company. Some of the extras you can look for include data backup and recovery, firewall protection (enhanced), high network bandwidth and other technologies.
Know the Actual Location of the Data Center
Prior to signing up for the colocation service, it would be a good idea to know the actual location of the data center first. You will find that some high-end facilities will have data centers that are strewn across vast geographical distances. Backing up the data on multiple servers ensure that you will not encounter any nasty problems regarding data loss, since there will be excellent redundancy.
You can also choose to have a data center that is in close proximity to your business in order to reduce latency of data transmission, and backups or restoration. This also reduces the risk of data replication problems. All in all, an ideal colocation service should have a data center in more than one location to protect user data.
Find Out How They Provide Connectivity
The manner in which they provide the connectivity also influences colocation service choice. It is essential that the colocation service offers you connectivity that is reliable, resilient, and robust. It should be able to provide support to multiple locations. A data center that does not have these connectivity features is not worth it, since it means that you will have constant problems when it comes to connecting to the data center for downloads, uploads, backups, or restoration of data.
Determine If They are Capable of Maintaining the Right Temperature in Their Data Centers
This is one of the technical issues that many people may not know about data centers used for colocation services, but which can affect the quality of their data. Ideally, a data center has to have a controlled temperature throughout the facility; industry standards typically range from 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. It is more common for temperatures to rise too high due to issues such as poor ventilation, and this usually results in the damage of hardware particularly circuit boards. When this happens, data corruption and other errors can occur, and the risk of losing some or all of your data is very real. Before signing up for a colocation service, you have the right to ask how they handle this issue, and even schedule a tour to see it for yourself.
Know How They Respond to Disasters
Colocation service providers can be hit by all sorts of disasters including earthquakes, mudslides, electrical short circuits, floods and more. To be sure that your data will be safe, it is important to understand what measures they have set in order to mitigate these disasters. A colocation center that has not planned for any of these is not reliable. Some of the things they can do to prepare for them include redundant backups and construction of the data centers to cushion the negative effects of disasters.