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Data Centers

Selecting a colocation data center can be a long and frustrating process, but here at Colocation America we strive to make your choice as simple as possible. With technologically advanced hosting facilities located across the country, you're sure to find one near you. We strive to keep all hardware updated and our centers secure because we know it's of the upmost importance to our clients. Our centers are located near main hubs which give clients access to optimal data transfer rates.

What is a Premium Data Center?

data centers

A Colocation Facility must meet standards for N +1 redundancy in each of the following areas:

  • Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS)
  • Backup generators
  • HVAC systems

Overall, facilities should have on-staff employment around the clock, 24x7,365 days a year with continued camera surveillance. Biometric security is preferable but not necessary. VESDA (Very Early Smoke Detection Apparatus) fire and dry-pipe pre-action or gas-based fire suppression is necessary. Various fiber providers must assist the facility through 2 or more input facilities. Data center resiliency is not entirely based on physical power and cooling infrastructure, but also the network of communications redundancy and fire detection and suppression. They are key features missing from the Uptime Institute's tier rating system which focus on power and cooling infrastructure.

What is a Standard Data Center Facility?

Facilities with adequate power and cooling capability with critical fire suppression are in this category, as are facilities with non-redundant HVAC and UPS units and solely one backup generator. The bottom line is that server hosting customers are looking for high availability and security for IT equipment, which implies for higher power consistency, cooling and fire detection with the capability to simultaneously support and 24x7 staffing and security found in a premium carrier hotel.

Los Angeles:
 
Aon Center : 707 Wilshire Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90017
One Wilshire: 624 S. Grand Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90017
Digital Realty Trust: 600 W. 7th St. Los Angeles, CA 90017
Quinby Building: 650 S. Grand Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90017
Telecom Center: 530 W. 6th St. Los Angeles, CA 90014
 
San Francisco:
 
200 Paul Exchange: 200 Paul St. San Francisco, CA 94110
 
New York:
 
60 Hudson Building: 60 Hudson Ave. New York, NY 10013
 
New Jersey:
 
100 Delawanna Buiding:100 Delawanna Ave. Clifton, NJ 07014
Chicago:
 
350 E Cermak Rd. Chicago, IL 60616
701 S Lasalle St. Chicago, IL 60605
725 S Wells St. Chicago, IL 60607
427 S Lasalle St. Chicago, IL 60605
717 S Wells St. Chicago, IL 60607
601 W Polk St. Chicago, IL 60607
600 W Chicago Ave Chicago, IL 60654
1331 E Business Center Dr. Mt Prospect, IL 60056
800 E. Business Center Dr. Mt. Prospect, IL 60056
1850 Springer Dr. Lombard, IL 60148
1808 Swift Dr. Oakbrook, IL 60523
360 E 22nd St. Lombard, IL 60148
2425 Busse Rd. Arlington Heights, IL 60005
1905 Lunt Ave. Elk Grove Village, IL 60007
Tier Rankings

Determining which service provider to choose from for your servers can be a difficult task. By the time you do your research, you realize that every colocation and dedicated server provider claim that they have the best cooling and fire detection which can determine if your equipment will be safe. There are many providers that believe their hardware infrastructure is elite, but who really determines that? The Uptime Institute uses a slightly mysterious 4 level Tier Data Center Ranking format (Tier I, Tier II, Tier III, Tier IV) as a scale to examine the reliability of a hosting center. The system rating begins with Tier I centers that are mostly warehouses with power and finishes with Tier IV data centers, which offer 2N redundant power and cooling with 99.99% Uptime.

A Tier III center is simultaneously maintained so any organized maintenance activities in power and cooling take place without disturbing the performance of computer hardware in the colocation facility. As for dismissal, offers Tier III "N +1" accessibility. Unplanned actions such as operational errors or unplanned failure of infrastructure components can still cause a disruption. Mainly, a Tier III facility is not completely fault tolerant. A Tier IV is fault-tolerant, meaning it has no disruption or downtime. Tier IV facilities have no single points of failure. The key concept is that a Tier IV design requires double the infrastructure of a Tier III designs.

Regrettably, the Uptime Institute chose to not make their assessment guidelines public. A small amount of the facilities have certifications from the Uptime Institute tier. Only 38 plants or design documents from the facilities have the official tier certifications at this point and these are mainly corporate facilities.

In the end, the Uptime Institute's definitions have been abused by the industry and ignored in some cases. Companies should issue their Tier IV demands from providers since there are higher costs of a Tier IV facility which should be approximately double that of a Tier III facility.

Components and Hardware

The networking equipments that make up our IT infrastructure are consistently looked after and maintained so that all of its components work together to provide you with the best results. This is commonly referred to as the critical load, the load that must continue to be powered at all times, otherwise an interruption will stop the revenue-generating process. Any weak link and the strength of the entire chain suffers. The different parts of this chain are:

dedicated server

  • Servers

    Data centers all revolve around the critical load-processes that require a platform, communications and processing power. The server is the lifeblood of a carrier hotel and all other infrastructure exists to allow the servers to do their computations and provide their outputs, in whatever form.

  • Racks/Cabinets

    Servers require a structure in which to reside and have power delivered to them. Racks [or cabinets] house these servers [or other equipment such as switchers or routers] in a vertical "silo" and contain power strips that distribute power to each piece of equipment. Each rack is broken up into "Rack Units", commonly referred to as U, which is a unit of measurement used to describe the height of the equipment to be mounted in the racks [1U = 1.75inches]. One rack unit is referred to as 1U or 1U Colo, two rack units are referred to as 2U or 2U Colo, etc. The size of rack-mounted equipment is usually described as a multiple of "U" with a standard full rack 42U.

  • Rows

    Racks are aligned neatly in rows where the fonts and backs of the equipment stored can be accessed in line.

  • Aisles

    The space in between the many rows of racks are referred to as aisles. Aisles serve as a corridor for the installation and access of installed equipment, as well as a location for the supply of cooled air to the rack, and the collection of warm air from the equipment. Air is drawn in from the front of the equipment by fans and rejected out through the back. In order to be the most efficient and prevent the cascading of hot air rejected from one row of equipment to flow onto the cold air of another row, rows are normally oriented in a hot aisle, cold aisle configuration.

  • Cages

    In colocation facilities, to separate customers that have the need for multiple racks or rows and provide additional security, portions of the hosting facility can be segregated with the installation of cages. Cages are essentially fences installed around a group of racks. These fences are secured with keycard or scanner controlled doors.

  
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