Server colocation is a common way to save on costs when hosting data. If the user requires a very specific setup in their server, colocation offers a reliable option in lieu of the business hosting their own server in-house. The process of colocation is simple; a server is set up or rented from a colocation provider, the provider then supplies an IP address, bandwidth, and the necessary environment for the server to run (power, cooling, etc). While there are certainly advantages and disadvantages of colocation, it is quickly becoming a popular way to host data off-site.


Why Someone Should Use Colocation

Server colocation has many advantages, the largest of which being bandwidth. Generally speaking, colocation facilities can offer higher bandwidth for a server at around the same cost as an internet provider’s lower bandwidth. For a business, this is ideal, as the cost of installing high-bandwidth T1 lines or a comparable infrastructure is often off-putting to most business owners. In addition, colocation facilities have greater outage protection, and can generally keep servers up and running much better than servers placed inside of a business itself. While the colocation facility provides the necessary environment and bandwidth for the server, the user is not dependent on the facility for upgrades or modifications to their server. For example, if more memory is required in the server, a user can simply head over to the colocation facility and install more. The server remains under the user’s control, not the facility’s. Colocation providers [see TheGigabit] also provide a greater degree of security than can be reasonably expected from any business. The servers are kept in a secure environment, and access is strictly controlled to only representatives of the business that owns the server.


Disadvantages of Colocation

While there are many advantages to colocation, there are some negative points worth mentioning. Colocation providers can be difficult to find, as it is necessary to find one near a home or office so the server can be easily maintained. In addition, colocation is more expensive than basic web hosting, but for any business that requires more than just the basics this is an understandable cost. It can also be difficult to move a business with a colocation provider, as moving further way would make the server more difficult to maintain.


Is Colocation the Best Choice?

Although there are pros and cons to colocation provider services, those who require excellent and dynamic hosting need not fear the negatives. If a business relies heavily on web data then colocation is a must. Simple outages for these companies become costly, as each minute the server is down is money not being earned. A colocation provider can fix some of these problems, allowing a business to have unparalleled uptime on their server while still allowing the business to have full control and customization of their server and its data. Colocation really is the safe option for a business that doesn’t want to overspend, but wants to have the greatest level of versatility and reliability in their server.

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