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Colocation

A colocation center is a data center facility in which a business can rent space for servers and other computing hardware.

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Overview

A colocation center (also spelled co-location, or colo) or “carrier hotel,” is a data center facility in which a business can rent space for servers and other computing hardware. Many colocation providers sell to a wide range of customers, ranging from large enterprises to small companies. Typically, a colo provides the building, cooling, power, bandwidth, and physical security while the customer provides servers and storage. Customers retain control over the design and usage of their equipment, but daily management of the data center and facility is overseen by the multi-tenant colocation provider.

Applications can be restored on server systems for access through local or virtual infrastructures. Applications can also stream core application code from a centralized system with the presentation of the application on the guest device. Local resources such as printers, drives, and other network resources are available to the guest device. In either case, applications can be reinstated individually or as part of a whole system restoration.

Systems, which can include various server types, can be restored through use of backups taken prior to the outage.

Finally, the data is the information that either the applications or systems access. It too can be restored from backup at a point in time before the outage.

Let's Unpack That

The term colocation refers to several aspects of a data center. First, the term references the fact that servers and other equipment from many different companies are ‘co-located’ in one data center. The hardware is usually owned by the companies themselves and simply housed (and sometimes maintained) by the data center staff. It also refers to the concept that a company can have their equipment located in multiple places. They may have servers, for example, in three or four different colocation data centers. This is important for companies that have large geographic footprints and want to ensure their computer systems are located near their physical offices.

  • Cabinets – A cabinet is a locking unit that holds a server rack. In a multi-tenant data center, servers within cabinets share raised-floor space with other tenants, in addition to sharing power and a cooling infrastructure.
  • Cages – A cage is dedicated server space within a traditional raised-floor data center; it is surrounded by mesh walls and entered through a locking door. Cages share power and a cooling infrastructure with other data center tenants.
  • Suites – A suite is a dedicated, private server space within a traditional raised-floor data center; it is fully enclosed by solid partitions and entered through a locking door. Suites may share power and a cooling infrastructure with other data center tenants, or have these resources provided on a dedicated basis.
  • Modules – Data center modules are purpose-engineered modules and components that offer scalable data center capacity. They typically use standardized components, which make them easy to add, integrate, or retrofit into existing data centers to fit a customer’s needs. In a colocation environment, the data center module is a data center within a data center, with its own steel walls and security protocol, and its own cooling and power infrastructure.

Why Choose Colocation?

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  • Without a DR Plan, a company could potentially be reset to day one in the event of a disaster.
  • Lost sales will inevitably impact revenue.
  • An inability to serve customers will lead to mistrust, and potentially decrease the number of current or recurring customers
  • Employee non-productivity costs will be incurred.

Why Work With Us?

Although colocation seems very straightforward, the reality is that there are multiple factors to consider when selecting the right partner to house your mission critical business applications.

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  • Is the data center location geographically dispersed?
  • Are there environmental concerns that I should be aware of in that region?
  • What tier data center do I need?
  • Will the colocation partner meet my security compliance requirements?
  • Will I need help procuring and installing equipment?
  • Do they provide other services if I choose to move the cloud?

We can help you identify your needs, then research which colocation partners would be appropriate to speak to and get quotes from. From there we can also help with the selection process.

Working with an independent consultant allows us to analyze your needs and source the best solution provider(s) that meet requirements and exceed expectations. This is done agnostically, letting you focus on the project at hand without being tied down by endless supplier discussions.

Is Colocation Right for My Organization?

Today’s organizations are finding it more convenient to move their critical assets into a more secure and resilient environment. This helps with uptime, performance, and disaster recovery.

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When asking yourself if colocation is right for your organization, consider the following:

  • Are you looking for a secure environment to relocate your application infrastructure?
  • What, if any, compliances does your organization need to adhere to?
  • Do you need geographic redundancy for your applications? If so, what are acceptable regions to consider?
  • How much space, power, and types of network connectivity will be required?
  • What, if any, existing carriers do you need connectivity within a new facility?

Things to Consider

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When selecting a colocation facility, keep in mind the following factors:

  • Geographic Locations – natural disasters
  • Regions that have less expensive power than others
  • Subsidized power
  • Power & Cooling capabilities

A number of colocation companies have adopted the modular approach to build their data centers to better match customer demand.

This allows customers to buy a data center as a service, paying only for what they consume.

If you really are not using any server-based technology, then Colocation might not be a fit for your organization. However, you will still need a BCDR (Business Continuity Disaster Recovery) strategy, which does reside in one or several colocation/data center facilities, even when cloud-based.

Things to Consider with Suppliers

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32
Years in Business
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1500+
Customers Served
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20,000+
Agents Supported
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Jimi Shah

Director of Client Solutions

Frequently Asked Questions

Why would I want to move to a UCaaS solution when my prem-based PBX works fine and is paid for?

We hear this from clients all the time and that makes it a perfect time to evaluate the market. Often people don't realize the potential cost savings for moves, adds and changes as well as administration and productivity benefits a new communications and collaboration solution brings. This is a great reason for us to chat and explain the benefits of deploying new technology.

Will my network support UCaaS?

Yes, however the call quality may or may not be impacted based on the existing network you have in place. During our discovery process we will help you determine what changes if any you'll need to make to your current network to ensure optimal voice quality. Most of the time a MPLS network just to support cloud UC services is not practical or cost effective. If preferred we have options to where you can securely extend your existing MPLS networks into our data centers, offering a cost-effective way to migrate to the cloud with enterprise quality of service and without the need to dislodge existing network investments.

We have a lot of employees that travel and work out in the field. Do you have a mobile solution?

Yes, reliability and mobility must go hand in hand, as customers are no longer willing to sacrifice one for the other. UCaaS can dramatically simplify mobile application deployment and management, and many organizations are now even opting for a mobile-first strategy, replacing traditional desktop phones with smartphones and tablets to connect increasingly distributed workforces.

What is your UCaaS platforms disaster recovery strategy?

Our UCaaS platform has a high-availability, fully redundant, multi-data center architecture that guarantees service availability in the event of a data center failure. In short, regardless of the reason for failure (e.g. storm or man-made disaster), you will be unaffected even if an entire data center goes down.