In-House Data Center vs Colocation Facility: A Complete Guide to the Pros and Cons

2.5 quintillion bytes of data are produced every day.  This is mind-boggling, especially if you consider the amount of data produced per year. 

Corporates need data for many varying reasons. 

This makes data production and storage an essential part of business management.  As a business, expanding your IT infrastructure is critical. You may consider expanding your data center not only for space but also as a means to enhance the safety and security of your data.

But a common challenge that emerges is the decision on where to set up your servers. 

Your decision on the best option when it comes to data storage requires a keen assessment of the pros and cons that each type of data center presents. Don’t know whether you need a colocation facility or an in-house data center? Read on to find out how to choose what’s best for your business.

What Is a Data Center?

Data centers form a critical part of any modern business. The center is a space or a dedicated building within a business premise. Businesses use this setting to house computer systems and other associated IT infrastructure components. 

Data centers offer storage support for an organization’s telecommunication system.

A business needs such data centers to store, manage, and disseminate data. This ensures the continuity of the business in the long-term. 

One of the most basic roles of a data center is to provide the centralization of the company’s information technology operations.

Different types of data centers exist. As an organization, deciding on the kind of data center that works for you may require a focus on your business. You must understand the needs that necessitate such an expansive information technology infrastructure.

Two of the most common data center options you may be interested in are the in-house data center and colocation facility. For you to understand the difference between the two and the underlying pros and cons involved in each case, please read on. 

What Is an In-house Data Center?

Well, in-house hosting relates to the use of servers and other networking hardware primarily owned by your company. The entire process of producing, managing, and storing data in such cases is done within the business premise. In such cases, your company undertakes the process of managing data within the in-house stand-alone data center.

This arrangement is also termed as the on-premise data center. You may decide to adopt this option if you are keen on private data infrastructure. If you opt for this option, then it means that you must set up a dedicated facility where all your computing equipment has a central access point.

Why Would You Consider an In-House Data Center?

Well, most of the proponents of this option consider certain aspects in the structural makeup of the in-house system to be an advantage. You may find the ability to have full control of the data system as a major benefit when dealing with instances of troubleshooting. Indeed, if your business handles rather sensitive client-related information, keeping your data in-house may seem like a better option.

The argument around the safety and security of data makes the in-house data centers to appeal to as more secure. When you have an in-house data-center, making modifications or expanding the system to your advantage may also seem to be easy and fast. You’ll also have obvious extents of ease of access when using hardware and servers that are at your disposal. 

From a cost and benefits point of view, it is also agreeable that using an in-house system may save you from the fluctuating license costs. The accumulation of such charges may end up affecting normal operations in the long-term.

The Cons of an In-house Data Center 

Nonetheless, you may need to consider the negative side before opting for an in-house data center. One of the realities of this option is that managing such bulky data may be a significant hassle. You can imagine the accumulated data you are likely to have over the next five years.

You may need to use massive resources to manage and store such data. Your business may also lack the capacity to manage such big data. The limitations are justifiable especially considering the safety and security infrastructure needed to be in place at all times. 

You also have to consider that the responsibility for the entire information system infrastructure for your data center falls within the management of the in-house teams. Such teams may often lack the requisite capacity to manage technical hitches. 

You also need to consider the fact that your business may end up incurring construction costs and other expenses related to the setting up of the critical information system. You must also consider your capacity to put in place sufficient in-house disaster recovery systems in case of a disaster. 

What Is Colocation? 

The global Data Center Colocation market is expected to generate over $100 billion by 2025. This growth is driven by a rapid increase in data storage and management budget in many enterprises.

You may be better off considering the contribution of a colocation facility if you are keen on overcoming the challenges of having an in-house data center. You may be wondering, what is collocation. 

Well, this is a common data hosting approach where you use an outsourced server colocation to manage your data needs. Most of the time, this option involves allowing a third party to manage your data in a center that is externally located.  

The colocation service provider will provide the space, power, internet connectivity, hardware, and security necessary during the entire period. You may have different leasing arrangements and rent options available to you in such cases. 

A colocation facility may also offer additional management support, which may face limitations depending on the agreement.

The Benefits of a Colocation Facility 

One of the main advantages of a colocation server is that the facility is shared. This reduces the cost of hosting significantly. It also means that you may consider the option of colocation and still spend less on the running costs.

Most colocation experts can maximize your uptime by dealing with redundant internet and other concerns related to power failure. This is a major advantage considering the exposure to risks that you may face as a business. 

You may rest easy knowing that the colocation provider has mirrored data centers in case of unforeseen scenarios. This is a critical assurance even in the event of a disaster. 

A reliable colocation service provider will also have a stable high-end physical security structure. The security features ensure that your data is secure at all times. Reputable colocation providers even have a contingency option in place to ensure your data has a backup at all times.  

The Cons Associated With Colocation  

You must appreciate that there is always the other side to a good thing. One of the main issues that may stand out when considering a colocation network is the distance between your staff and the IT infrastructure. 

You may end up running the risk of having a delayed troubleshooting response in case of a problem. However, this depends on the experience associated with your provider. 

The other reality is that the initial cost of colocation can be expensive. The setup fees and the licensing needs when considering the colocation option may be high. This often occurs if your service provider is unwilling to negotiate.

You may also have a real challenge scheduling maintenance in cases of downturns where your provider lacks the anticipated aptitude. The limitations associated with outsourcing a colocation facility may be manageable. But this requires working with a seasoned and reliable colocation provider. 

Your Significant Data Management Needs are Now In Better Hands

You no longer have to worry about the resources needed to keep your data management process in check. You need to consider outsourcing your data from a colocation facility that can host and manage such critical IT infrastructure professionally.  

This choice will lift a huge burden off your chest. You need to consider the services of a seasoned colocation service provider, and your data storage and safety concerns will be a thing of the past.

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