Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Do I Want Colocation?

Dear Metro,

My business partner and I are looking at some ways to save some money and the idea of colocation has come up. Can you explain the advantages and the disadvantages of colocation and if this is something that CNSG can do?

Nick T.
Small Business Owner

Dear Nick,

Colocation is generally a good idea for small businesses to consider--it gives you the benefits and features of a large IT department without the cost.

Large corporations have the infrastructure to host their own servers and have a team of IT professionals to manage and design and maintenance of the site. Small businesses and sole proprietorships do not.

To host your site, you have a range of options from simple hosting with a hosting company to running your own Web servers off of a dedicated Internet connection. One attractive option is colocation.

Colocation allows you to put your server in someone else's rack and share their bandwidth as your own. It generally costs more than standard Web hosting...since you buy the server, but less than a comparable amount of bandwidth into your place of business. And you don't have to share the space with other sites that the hosting vendor may set up on the server, (which could cause several issues including speed).

Once you have a server configured with your site and other hosted programs, you physically take it to the location of the colocation provider and install it in their rack, (or you can rent a server from the colocation provider depending on your specific needs and budget).

The company you are co-locating with then provides an IP, bandwidth, and power to your server. With co-location you will have access to the server whenever you need to.

The biggest advantage of colocation is the cost for bandwidth. Depending on the amount of servers and and the type of Internet connection you have. But the back-up and outage protection that a Colocation facilities can offer can save a business serious finanical and operational angst. Another advantage is that the business you colocate with may offer you IT services, so if or server needs management or maintenance, they can take care of this for you at an additional cost.

Disadvantages would include distance to the colocation facillity, and the cost over the amount you would pay for basic hosting.

If you would like to speak with someone about how colocation would work for your business, please give us a call at 1.866.738.1662 or go to our website at


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