Things To Consider When Choosing A Colocation Hosting Service Provider!

What does one expect from a colocation hosting provider? Once the decision is made to use such a service, the next step is to know what is involved.

Colocation hosting services are perfect for companies who want complete control over their websites and the way they are operated, but are unable to host their websites themselves.

Since the servers belong to the users, the server has to be configured and completely loaded with the necessary information before being delivered to the colocation host.

Service Monitoring

One of the most important things users look for in a colocation host is that their website stays online at all times.  This is where it becomes important to choose a provider that offers Service Monitoring contracts, which means they take up the responsibility of watching over your system to ensure it keeps running continuously.

Hardware Support

Many providers offer Hardware Support contracts and take up the responsibility of keeping the servers operating mechanically. Some providers also require that the users give them the necessary spare parts in advance, to be used when the need arises. But if the server is purchased from the provider, they may charge the user the cost of the spare parts, but fix the machines.

In the absence of a hardware agreement with the colocation host, you can pay them to take care of any issues that arise or send a technical person over to the colocation host to handle it.  You will have to decide what you need before finalizing on a colocation host.

Size of the Server

The size of your server is an important factor when choosing a colocation host. You will find these hosts have limitations along with differences in price. Let us take the example of rack mount servers.  They come in all sizes; while some take up less rack space and are cheaper to co-locate, the larger ones are more expensive since they use up more space. Some of the co-hosts may allow tower boxes while other allow rack mount servers.  This has to be clarified beforehand.

There are several key elements that need to be taken into consideration, such as the bandwidth, rack space, hardware support, internet connectivity, server monitoring, uptime, backup services and static IP addresses.

Here is a list of things you need to ask your colocation host:

  • Find out how much it would cost if you exceed your bandwidth limit in a particular month.
  • Check out the prices for the type of server you are going to use at the colocation, since different prices are charged for different servers.
  • Ask if the co-host offers hardware support contracts and if they do, ask them how long it takes to get hardware repaired.  Do they keep the spare parts ready or do they get them when the need arises? If they do not offer such contracts and you don’t need them, find out how they attend to any problems with servers.   Do they offer their services for a fee or allow a technician from your end to gain access to the servers?
  • Learn all about the number of internet connections they have and the size of the connection.  This is important to ensure there is no downtime.
  • Does the co-host have a guaranteed uptime?
  • Do they offer Server Monitoring services?  This is needed to ensure the servers are up and running all the time.
  • How many IP addresses are going to be allotted to you? Is there any cost involved for getting more later?
  • Do they offer any backups?  If they do, what sort of backups? What are the extra data backups offered and what is the cost involved?

With these questions answered, you are better informed and have all the information you could ever need. You will just have to start looking at the different colocation hosting providers and compare their services and prices, to finalize on the one that suits your needs the best.  Don’t forget to give importance to word-of-mouth in finding a reputed host.

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