If your business has an online presence in the form of a website or an e-commerce store, you are a data center user. A data center is a facility that houses hundreds and thousands of servers and other IT infrastructure. A data center may be in the form of an entire building or just a part of an organization’s premises. You may be using a data center directly in the form of a colocation service or indirectly through your hosting service.
The data center facility that hosts your website affects its performance, security and reliability. So, before you choose a cheap hosting in India or a colocation provider, it is vital to assess the capabilities of its data center.
Most important factors that you should take into account when choosing a data center in India
The location of your data center is crucial as it contributes to the latency of your network. The further your data center is from your end-users, the longer it will take for the data to travel between them. So, if a majority of your users are based in India, choosing a data center service based out of the USA or Europe will not serve the purpose.
Besides, if your data center is close to your premises, it will be easy for your personnel to get to the data center facility. This is particularly important when you are using a colocation service and need to upgrade or service your equipment.
Also important is to take into account if the geographical location of your data center is vulnerable to natural disasters such as earthquake, hurricanes or floods.
Reliability is yet another consideration when choosing a data center facility. The data center should have redundancies in place to ensure uninterrupted power supply. This includes UPS that can keep the servers running for a short time in the event of an outage, backup generators to cater to the data center needs for a longer time and redundant connections to more than one supplier. Plus, there should be provision for proper ventilation and cooling.
An important indicator of the reliability of a data center provider is the uptime it offers. It should provide you with at least 99.95% uptime. For more information on uptime, you should check the reviews of its customers.
While it may be difficult to thoroughly assess the security of a data center, you can look for security standards backed by qualified third-party auditors. Make sure you ask about their security certifications, particularly about SSAE 16, SOC, PCI DSS and HIPAA compliance.
Physical security is equally important. Data is a valuable asset and lax security can result in data loss or hardware theft. A data center should, at the very least, have biometric access control, 24*7 CCTV surveillance and armed manpower at all entry and exit points.
Your data center provider should be able to fulfill your current needs and prepared to offer additional resources as and when required. Different data centers offer different levels of flexibility. While some come with out-of-the-box solutions that may or may not fulfill your needs, others offer more customized solutions (and more flexibility) in addition to the standardized offerings.
Make sure your service provider is able to allocate additional space, power and connectivity whenever required. Choose a provider that can help scale your business over time.
The role of a data center is to connect your website to the internet network. This can be done in many ways. The bandwidth, network reliability and latency available for your website depend on how your data center is connected.
A small data center in India typically connects to a single local bandwidth provider which buys bandwidth from a regional provider. The latter, in turn, gets linked to a major network provider. This arrangement may be fine for smaller websites but does not suit websites demanding ample bandwidth.
The most reliable data centers connect directly with the major network providers and offer connections from many different providers. This reduces the likelihood of an outage and allows for reliable performance of your website. So, when choosing a provider, look for information about the data center’s connectivity to major bandwidth providers.
Choosing a data center is always a crucial decision for your business. So, you need to carefully weigh the pros and cons of each service provider and ask the right questions to make sure you select a partner capable of fulfilling your present and future needs. A little effort can help you arrive at the right provider that helps you run and expand your business seamlessly.
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