10 things to consider before choosing a data centre

Are you considering getting a data centre for your organisation? Here are 10 of the many considerations you need to take into account before choosing the right data centre.

Posted on 24 December 2014 - Hosting
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1. Availability

Consider the service level agreements provided by the prospective data centre. You will want at least 99.9% availability.

2. Power

Data centres need power, so you need to make sure yours has a reliable supply. Check that a centre you’re thinking of using has back-up generators and find out how often they are tested.

3. Cooling

Data centres need to operate at temperatures of between 16 and 24°C and with humidity of 40-55%. That means cooling systems can create up to half to costs of running a data system. Find out how it works, how often it is checked and whether it has a backup power supply.

4. Energy prices

If you’re using a co-lo centre in which you have to pay your own power bills, local energy prices will have a big part to play in the cost efficiency of your data centre.

5. Security

All of your valuable data is going to be kept somewhere and you’re probably not going to be able to access the building on a daily basis. So find out who is accessing it on a daily basis. Check the security process for access, visitor escorts and logs of entry/exit.

6. Natural disaster risk

As far fetched as it might seem sat on this screen in black and white, your data centre could fall victim to a natural disaster. There are places in the world where your infrastructure would be at greater risk of earthquakes, flooding and hurricanes, for example.

7. Data protection laws

There is no sense storing your data somewhere where local law makes it easy for people you don’t want to access it to do just that.

8. Cleaning

It might seem trivial but the way a data centre is cleaned can have a big impact on its performance in the long term. Just using a standard cleaning company is likely to build up a contamination of products that can damage your equipment. Make sure the cleaning is undertaken by data centre cleaning specialists.

9. International bandwidth

In today’s global economy, it very likely that your data will be crossing geographic borders. Find out the maximum quantity of data transmission from the country in which the data centre is based to the rest of the world.

10. Disaster recovery plan

Despite your best efforts to pick a data centre that is secure, not prone to natural disaster and cleaned properly, what happens if something does go wrong? Find out the prospective data centre’s plan should the worst happen.

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