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Colocation is One-Piece of the Data Management Puzzle

Colocation is One-Piece of the Data Management Puzzle
March 26
08:59 2013

Colocation, or using one data-storage space for multiple entities, is a useful tool to managing overflow work- without outsourcing. When using colocation wisely, it is a viable method to manage operating costs, while maintaining control of a project. This is largely due to the fact that colocation can often be covered by operating expenses, rather than requiring capital funds to build an off-site data center.


Wholesale colocation providers will provide the venue space; however, all hardware will need to be provided by the business or agency. In this case, a large data center is furnished with power and cooling infrastructure, but is otherwise empty. The tenant is responsible for bringing in equipment, running the data cables, and ensuring that the space is best used to meet their needs. Retail colocation, on the other hand, is often more small-scale. Individual servers are available, and often technical support is also offered with retail options. The smaller scale; however, may carry a higher price point.

Planning Ahead

When possible, resources should be planned with a purpose in mind. If organizations, agencies, or branches of a company are considering colocation, a clear list of expectations should be determined at the outset. For example, how much security a site needs to offer for the data being housed, type of features necessary, climate control settings, and any other unique workspace requirements should be addressed. Having a clear goal when beginning colocation will streamline the process of data storage.

Ongoing Review

When considering colocation, review service agreements for on-going maintenance and ensure that emergency maintenance needs are also included in the agreement. An existing colocation provider should be able to offer a ready-made schedule of monthly, quarterly, and annual maintenance and should be prepared with a plan for utility outages.

Using a colocation provider may be included as part of your agency disaster recovery plan. In this case, necessary response- such as keeping critical components live or recovering high-priority components quickly, should be included in the service agreement.

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