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Hybrid Cloud Colocation Strategies

Hybrid Cloud Colocation Strategies


Hybrid clouds are increasingly used to give businesses the best of both public and private infrastructure. Using colocation for the private element is often the most effective option. With that in mind, here is a straightforward overview of hybrid cloud colocation strategies.

Integration benefits

Here are the three main advantages of combining hybrid cloud and colocation strategies.

Cost efficiency

One of the reasons colocation has become so popular is that, overall, it often works out much to be more cost-effective than either in-house data centers or the public cloud.

The upfront cost is minimal and the operational costs are typically lower than the costs of using the public cloud in the same way. This is because the costs of the public cloud are directly tied to usage. With colocation, organizations pay for the use of facilities. They can use these as much as they like without paying extra.

This means that it typically makes solid financial sense to use colocation for a business’ core processing needs. The public cloud can be used when a business needs to expand beyond these. For example, it can handle peak processing and/or geographically-distributed users.

As with the cloud, however, businesses that use colocation get the benefits of shared infrastructure costs and economies of scale. By extension, this generally means that they get access to state-of-the-art infrastructure without having to implement it. In particular, they get access to the latest energy-saving technologies. These can significantly reduce operating costs.

Flexibility

Colocation offers more scalability than in-house data centers and more customizability than the public cloud. This means that, overall, they provide the balance most businesses want.

Although colocation does not offer dynamic provisioning, it is great for predictable scaling. For example, businesses with known seasonal fluctuations can predict their infrastructure needs reasonably well. They can use the public cloud for any excess.

Colocation also allows for customized network configurations and direct hardware control. This means that it’s much better suited for accommodating services and applications with very specific requirements. It also gives businesses the option to fine-tune their use of resources more than is likely to be possible with the public cloud.

Using colocation may also make it easier to implement truly robust connectivity. Firstly, reputable colocation facilities tend to have extensive interconnectivity options. Secondly, colocation is a straightforward way for businesses to expand their geographic reach.

Streamlined management

Running an in-house data center requires a high level of hands-on management commitment. With colocation, by contrast, the colocation provider takes on the bulk of the work. In particular, they manage the physical and digital security for the colocation data center. This includes making provisions for disaster recovery and business continuity.

Their resilience (and hence reliability) should be reflected in their uptime guarantee. Most colocation vendors will also have an Uptime tier rating and historical performance data. These can be used to confirm that their claims about reliability are credible.

Data flow optimization

Here are the three main ways hybrid cloud colocation enhances data flow and accessibility.

Ability to scale resources

The scalability of colocation enables businesses to add networking infrastructure in line with their workload. This means that they can always maintain sufficient capacity to ensure regular data flow even at peak times.

By using colocation in a hybrid cloud setup, businesses give themselves the option to scale resources dynamically if required. This gives them a fallback option to handle unpredictable events.

Option to optimize geographic distribution

Colocation is likely to be the perfect solution for businesses that need (or want) to serve clusters of users in geographically diverse locations.

Hosting services, applications, and/or data near users minimizes their delivery time. When dealing with small groups of users, however, running an in-house data center is highly unlikely to be cost-effective.

By contrast, with colocation, businesses can right-size their capacity to match their needs. This gives them a cost-effective way to serve smaller groups of users. Again, combining this with the public cloud ensures they can cope with unexpected spikes in traffic.

Full control over access to data

There are really two sides to data access. One side is keeping it accessible to legitimate users. The other side is keeping it inaccessible to unauthorized users. Using colocation helps with both of these.

Its scalability and geographic flexibility help to ensure continuous service to legitimate users. At the same time, however, the high level of control it offers provides a lot of security against unauthorized access.

In particular, colocation facilities allow businesses to keep their infrastructure completely separate from other clients’ infrastructure. This separation is physical as well as digital. It is therefore more robust than the purely digital separation implemented in public clouds.

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