We got some unexpected, yet welcomed feedback on our recent post about adding virtualization to a disaster recovery plan. Specifically, a blog follower asked what makes one colo more desirable than another? We hope this posting will answer your question.
Colocation = Real Estate (for servers)
Joining a colocation center is similar to a real estate transaction. That colo rack will be the home for your equipment and as any Realtor will tell you, the most important consideration in any real estate transaction, is LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION.
Good Location = Fiber Diversity
Location from the colo perspective is about proximity to fiber. This should be your main decision criteria. The highest availability transit in any network facility is fiber based. If a colo is not relatively close to carrier fiber, the cost of bringing in more, should the need arise, is astronomical. This is the main reason why our colocation facility is located in Providence, Rhode Island rather than at our main offices in Fall River, Massachusetts. While Fall River would seem a perfect location with the surplus of vacant commercial space and manufacturing era utilities, it lacks the main component for a successful colo, access to fiber. Our Providence facility is located in the same building as a national carrier’s long distance switch and houses a diverse mix of fiber from major CLECs and carriers.
Fiber-lit Building = Zero Mileage Charges
To illustrate the potential costs involved, we recently priced out a fiber product from our switch site in Boston to a customer’s place of business about 50 miles away. The monthly recurring cost on the carrier piece alone was $22,000 per month. Needless to say the customer passed on the upgrade.
Multiple Paths = Guaranteed Uptime
Whether you buy network access at the colo, bring in your own, or use a combination of both, multiple paths will minimize the impact of any single carrier outage. Our network utilizes diverse fiber paths, from separate carriers, to hubs in Boston and New York
Fiber IS the reason.
Every colo is going to have redundant utilities and quality environmental conditioning, but it is only exceptional colocation sites that provide the opportunity to chose multiple carriers. I know the concept of fiber diversity might seem far removed from initial needs, but ultimately it is the foundation of long term success for any colo. The opportunity to access other networks, ergo The Internet, inexpensively, is WHY you place your equipment at a colo to begin with. The quality of that access is determined by fiber diversity.
If you would like more specific information on the our Providence colocation please contact one of our experienced sales engineers at the main office or email firstname.lastname@example.org