99.995% uptime and affordable colocation are not mutually exclusive

99.995% uptime and affordable colocation are not mutually exclusive. Many companies that visit our data center are surprised to learn that they can have high reliability without the huge capital costs of building a Rated-4 data center.

Most companies who need new high uptime data center space compare the costs of building their own primary data center in a company building versus using wholesale colocation facilities, aka outsource data centers.

So what does high uptime mean? Uptime is the measured value in minutes of a company's computer systems reliability. 99.995% uptime means 28 minutes of downtime per year or less. Companies who value uptime know that downtime causes lost sales, lost profits, and lost clients. These companies haveoften learned about the costs of data center downtime the hard way. Some unlikely circumstance caused an outage that was painful enough for leadership to reevaluate the importance of the server room to the success of the company.

But the cost of uptime is high. A small in-house data center with 99.995% uptime can easily reach $1 million in capital costs, and tens of thousands in staffing, yearly maintenance, SAS 70 and SSAE 16 data center certifications.

What does affordable mean? Here are three characteristics:

Simple data center pricing model - Can you understand how the pricing works? Are there multiple add-on charges and mysterious extra monthly fees?

Predictable - Predictable pricing models make it easy to forecast growth and change. How complex is a three year analysis of your costs? Are there multiple variable costs?

Incremental- Incremental means pay as you use it. Can you grow the number of racks and pay accordingly? Do you pay for electricity as you use it, or based on the circuit size?

The good news: you can have your cake and eat it too. You can meet Rated-4 data center uptime requirements and still keep data center outsource costs low. The bad news: there are only a few Midwest colocation facilities that offer high data center uptime at affordable pricing. Do your homework and you'll find flexible affordable colocation with high data center uptime.

Alex Carroll

Alex Carroll

Managing Member at Lifeline Data Centers
Alex, co-owner, is responsible for all real estate, construction and mission critical facilities: hardened buildings, power systems, cooling systems, fire suppression, and environmentals. Alex also manages relationships with the telecommunications providers and has an extensive background in IT infrastructure support, database administration and software design and development. Alex architected Lifeline’s proprietary GRCA system and is hands-on every day in the data center.
Alex Carroll