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What is Colocation?

Colocation (also known as Co-Location) is when you purchase the server, configure it the way you need and then have a hosting company put the server in their data center. The hosting provider is connected to the web and monitored by the hosting provider. Aside from rack space, power and internet connectivity, the hosting provider doesn’t provide any other services for your server.

Some of the main advantages to colocation hosting are that you have complete control over the hardware in your server. This allows you to select the components that will provide the best performance for your needs. This also allows you to load any software you might need for your web site (always check with your hosting provider since many maintain a list of software products with known security problems that they may not allow in their data center). You can load your software and optimize the server configuration prior to shipping it to the hosting provider so that everything will work exactly as you need.

This method of web hosting is not without its downsides: if any piece of equipment in your server fails, it is your responsibility to have it repaired. The hosting company can perform the maintenance on the server for a price, but you must supply the hardware. The maintenance of any software installed on your server is your responsibility too. Upgrading your database engine is not a task the hosting company would perform, along with installing patches.

This method may be you best choice if you have unique hardware or software requirements, have sensitive data stored on your server or your application is mission critical. This solution also gives you 100% control over your web server, so you can load and reload your software as often as you like, you can determine when to take you server down and when to have maintenance performed.

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