To maintain a server, it’s not enough to just put it in a closet somewhere in your office.

Servers need to be kept in special conditions, that include uninterrupted power supply, enhanced bandwidth, climate control in the room, as well as a separate room where the server will disturb no one with the noise it produces.

Since creating such conditions needs certain capital investments, most companies prefer not to house servers in their own rooms, but rather rent a server.

However, if they want to take responsibility for the server hardware, there is another service to suit their needs – colocation.

 

What is colocation?

Colocation means that you house your own hardware equipment in the spaces offered by the service provider.

You get a similar experience to that of a dedicated server, but in this case, the server is yours, while the provider gives you only the rooms, the conditions, and the infrastructure needed to provide your server with secure and uninterrupted operation, that includes among other things cooling and security measures, like CCTV, restricted access to the data center facilities to prevent unauthorized intrusions, as well as the disaster mitigation systems.

 

How to Choose a Proper Colocation Server?

There are various aspects to be taken into account when looking at colocation service. Let’s have a look at them.

Choose the provider properly

Different providers aren’t all the same. They have different offers, different prices, provide a different selection of locations, at different data centers.

When looking for a colocation service provider, be careful and don’t go for a random offer that your find through a google search – instead, analyze what your needs are, analyze the offers of different providers, and choose the one to optimally fit your website’s specificity.

A good example of a colocation service provider would be HostZealot. In our opinion, they meet the criteria we are going to discuss in the following for the vast majority of potential website owners.

We recommend you to check out their offer, but still, be careful and make sure on your own if they’re what your need – according to our instructions.

Power capacities

The power capacities that a provider can offer may vary, so make sure they can invest sufficient power supply for the operation as well as the cooling of your hardware, to let your website work to its full capacity.

Area

The hardware takes up space. When looking for a data center, calculate how much your hardware will occupy with an eye to the data center architecture. You pay for the area occupied, so make sure you’ll be able to accommodate your equipment into the area offered, maintaining the possibility of its complete and trouble-free operation.

Network Infrastructure Providers

When looking through the data centers available, make sure that the one you choose offers a variety of different network operators to connect to, to obtain more flexibility for ensuring optimal connectivity.

Service Level Agreement

Study carefully the service level agreement with a lawyer, to avoid any pitfalls. Make sure that the conditions offered by the provider do not contradict any of your interests, whether they guarantee a quick response time, flexible scalability options, and support availability..

Compliance

Another legal aspect of choosing the provider and data center is compliance. There are various legal requirements a data center must meet, including licenses, standards, and similar. To make sure that the cooperation with the provider will be completely safe in legal regards, check carefully whether they are offering the full list of required compliances, also with an eye on the specificity of your business.

The Location of the Data Center

The location of the data center has a also great effect on the success of your website. Whenever you create a business and a website for it, it’s pretty much likely that you have a certain target audience in mind which is bounded to a certain location.

The distance from the server and the location affects how fast your site will work for this territory and hence the quality of your customers’ user experience.

Providing them with a quickly functioning website is not only a sign of care, but it has a great effect on your SEO optimization necessary for your site to be easily found with common search engines. 

Partial Service VS Full Service

When purchasing a colocation plan, you can opt for either partial service or full service. This distinction is somewhat similar to managed and unmanaged hosting services, available when you look for a dedicated or VPS hosting plan.

With partial service, the provider barely offers the data center infrastructure while the installation of equipment and its maintenance is up to you. This is a reasonable option if you want to have more under your control if you are interested in taking care of these technical aspects of your business and have enough time and attention to dedicate to it.

Full service, in turn, is a model that suggests that you pay certain extra fees, but the team of the service takes care of the purely technical maintenance of your server. This option is better if you want to focus more on other aspects of your business.

Conclusion

Colocation is a web hosting service consisting in renting the server infrastructure at a data center while using your own hardware.

It’s a good choice for website owners that need the power of the whole physical server and want to have more control over the hardware involved.

Be careful and choose the provider that fits your requirements according to all criteria discussed above. Thank you for your attention, take care!