Organizations in today’s avant-garde IT world have many competitive options around offloading the loads associated with IT infrastructure management and space. Colocation and Cloud based hosting are 2 such scenarios service providers advocate organizations to adopt.
Colocation term refers to when customer takes rent basic facilities from provider but keepings its own server equipment. The facility, power, cooling, communications and data center floor space with is provided by Service provider which may be shared with other customers. The customer needs to have its own Server, storage and network devices and needs to manage/maintain on its own. The Colocation service provider will also provide physical security of the customer devices installed.
Cloud Service providers stretch a step beyond just providing space and facilities. Not only provides hardware infrastructure (Servers, storage, backup, network and security elements) but also maintains them providing the customers a full package of services. The customer is offloaded from day 2 day administrative and operational work of maintaining and troubleshooting the applications on Cloud.
In some scenarios, Colocation is preferred approach like when security compliance requirements are stringent (PCI- DSS etc.). Additionally, colocation allows customer to decide upon the server machines hardware and software to choose from and maybe select best in breed hardware/software from multiple vendors. This freedom to install any software and application may be limited in case of Cloud based service providers.
Some of major benefits from Cloud hosted solutions include very fast provisioning, scalability , lower TCO than Colocation.
Below tables compares Colocation based setups and Cloud based hosted solutions –