The difference of colocation from the other types of web hosting service is that you own the server machine yourself. Colocation is a hosting service which allows you to rent a rack in a data center and have a share in the bandwidth as if it were your own. Once everything is settled and you have set-up your server, you will physically go to the data center and install your server machine in the appropriate rack which you rented. Colocation is good for medium-sized to large-sized businesses who want the features similar to that of a large IT department. The up-side of colocation is that you get the features you want a cost-effective price.
What are the benefits of colocation?
Colocation has many benefits. These include:
- High bandwidth speeds at a low cost;
- Network connections that have better redundancy;
- The facilities used for colocation hosting have outage protection, so when the power goes out in your office, you don’t have to worry about server downtime;
- You own the server and the software in it, so you can do whatever you want with it. You can upgrade it and install new software. You basically have full control. You don’t have to wait for your web hosting provider to do the things for you.
- Colocation facilities have a conducive environment suitable for web servers;
- Colocation facilities physically secure your web server; and,
- There are experts who monitor your server 24/7.
What are the limitations of colocation?
- Colocation facilities may be difficult to find and can be very far from your workplace or from where you live;
- The above limitation also entails that you may have to travel far just to get to your server;
- Colocation hosting can be costlier than other web hosting services given the fact that you have to manage and maintain your server and almost everything that concerns it;
- If you move, you would have to move the servers to another colocation facility as well. You can pay for a contract which includes maintenance, but that can also be expensive.
How do I choose a colocation web hosting provider?
When choosing the colocation hosting provider that you need, you have to these into consideration:
- The nearest colocation facility to you, since you would have to travel there from to time;
- High physical security;
- High end cooling systems that are efficient enough to keep all the servers cool;
- A good UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply); and,
- The provider offers 24//7 availability for customer and technical support.
What else should I know about colocation hosting?
Colocation hosting can range from $35 to around $240 per month. The price will be affected by factors like the location of the colocation facility, the additional subservices the company offers, and the type of web hosting provider the company is.
There are also three types of colocation hosting. These are:
This allows the client to rent a whole building or a floor of a colocation facility.
Colocation hosting is not the core of the company’s business, however they do offer this service along with other features that are part of the company’s core functions. These functions are also directly beneficial to the clients most of the time.
Colocation retailers or Managed Service Providers
This is the most expensive among the three types, however, it offers one of the best services. The colocation retailer already provides all the equipment needed to maintain you server, such as the racks and cables. They are also in charge of everything regarding the maintenance and management off the power supply and the cooling system of the racks. Hands-on support is also given, in case you need to do some troubleshooting.