What is Rack Colocation?
Rack Colocation is a service where you can keep and host your servers at a Data Centre. Depending on the Data Centre this can range from just a single server, all the way up to a full rack.
Rack Colocation typically is for people or businesses who own and use multiple servers – like an IT Service Provider for example.
Typically Rack Colocation comes in 3 sizes:
However, if you wanted to use Colocation for a small number of servers, some Data Centres offer Single Server Colocation.
Typically, Colocation services will make sure your server is always accessible and kept in good condition. The core components offered are:
- Internet connections
- Power feeds
- Temperature control
- Physical rack space
- Physical security at Data Centre
With most of these, there is an option to upgrade/adjust the service you receive. An example of this would be wanting A/B Power or a faster internet connection.
What Are the Benefits of Rack Colocation?
Like any other Colocation, Rack Colocation has the same benefits:
- Guaranteed Connection and Uptime
- Data Centre built for redundancy (generator, multiple internet connections)
- Mitigates huge upfront costs of self-hosting
- Mitigates having to perform infrastructure maintenance
- Stops you having to maintain cooling systems/generators
- Access to your servers 24/7
- Kept safe by Data Centre’s physical security
Benefits Unique to Rack Colocation
This can differ from provider to provider, but typically Rack Colocation customers get additional benefits. A big one is that you have a unique rack that you can use how you want. Some people may fill this with servers, others will add additional PDU’s – the choice is yours!
Another big benefit is true 24/7 access. A lot of Data Centre’s will have escorted access for single server customers, as they will share a Rack with other customers. As such, visiting your server out of office hours can mean having to call a member of staff out. As a result of this, you could potentially receive an out of hours charge.
Rack Colocation customers tend to get given access details such as gate/door codes and keys, allowing them to access their rack and servers whenever they want! This can be very useful if maintenance is needed to be done at a quiet time of the day (such as late at night or early morning).
Do the Benefits Outweigh the Cost?
It is no secret that self-hosting servers can be very expensive.
There are the huge upfront costs of all the equipment, infrastructure and physical space needed to host the servers. Then on top of that, the regular maintenance needed to keep it all in top condition.
We find that usually, it is only worth hosting your servers if you have a large quantity of them and plan on expanding too. This way the costs will pay for themselves in the long run. However, Data Centres use this approach to their advantage. As a result, they are custom designed with hosting several servers in mind. Included in this is a detailed expansion plan.
Keep Your Office from Being a Server Room
One thing a lot of people do not remember at first when considering self-hosting/Colocation is the sheer amount of physical space needed! Servers take up a huge amount of space.
Colocation can take the servers out of your office, so it stays being your office and not a server room! Much better for your staff and customers!