Leasing through a hosting company's data center can be very expensive. For companies with more than a few dedicated servers, there is another option. It's called colocation, and it could save you a bundle where dedicated hosting options are concerned.
Here's how to find a good colocation center.
I: do your homework. As with any other service that you would pay for, a co-location center must come with a really good pricing option. When you first start to compare choices, you will find that centers just a few miles apart differ drastically where price is concerned. In the end, though, these centers have to justify the amount of space that they currently lease, and this is one way to leverage a better price.
II. think about local. You may find a great co-location center that's miles and miles away from your home, but that won't do you any good in the long run. Why? You may need physical access to your data center. If you go with a space that's really far away, you can probably forget about any kind of physical interaction. If you do find an impossible deal to pass up five states away, ask the company if you can mail your hardware. Most companies will set it all up for you (but, again, you won't have that physical access!).
III. consider building your own hardware. I know, this one seems like a really big and impossible task, and you can definitely go with pre-built hardware. But, if you have the skills and time, it's always fun to build your own stuff. Plus, building your own hardware is a really good way to save some cash.
IV. read reviews. As with any other purchase, it pays to read co-location reviews. You will find that some centers are less than desirable while others are just what you have been searching for. You'll find some reviews on this site, and you will find plenty of other reviews simply by conducting a basic search. You can never do too much homework!
How much money can you save when switching to a co-location center? Colocation centers have various benefits that can save you money in the long run such as:
- Lower energy costs
- Power outage protection
- More bandwidth
- Upgrade quickly
- Complete ownership of hardware
That said, though, it is important to select the right colocation center. Make sure that you are looking at a state-of-the-art center that comes with all the bells and whistles. Any center you choose should be able to quickly cool, run, and fix any problems that arise. Colocation means housing your servers in a shared location, and that means saving money – if you set it all up properly.