Cloud vs Colocation: And Why Not Both?


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In today’s digital world, most businesses utilize the Internet to conduct several operations, whether it’s administrative work, sales endeavors, or development activities. Companies need robust and dependable IT infrastructures to host applications and systems and ensure long-term success. While many businesses choose between using cloud vs colocation services, it’s not always necessary to use just one for all your corporate information. Instead, you can utilize them together to maximize efficiency.

What are Cloud Services?

Cloud servers are virtual spaces companies use to manage their data. To gain access to the cloud, you must work with a cloud provider. Once you form a partnership with the provider, you can migrate applications and data from your physical servers to the platform.

There are three main types of clouds that businesses can use — public, private, and hybrid. The public cloud includes numerous servers that multiple organizations can access. Typically, providers define these clouds as infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS). Private clouds function like the public cloud, but the network only hosts your business information. Since private clouds meet your company’s needs exclusively, they often cost more than public cloud platforms.

Another option is the hybrid cloud, which combines public and private clouds to enhance business processes. Organizations that utilize colocation and cloud services take a hybrid approach to data and application management.

Why Choose the Cloud?

The cloud is an affordable and convenient alternative for businesses that do not have existing IT hardware or wish to move particular applications to a virtual space. A company that uses physical servers may need to allocate substantial funds to make room for new data or applications, but one that uses the cloud can buy more space from the provider whenever the need arises. This flexibility makes it easier for companies to expand their offerings and grow.

Most cloud providers only require organizations to pay for the services they use. This approach prevents them from paying excessive fees to house information. Cloud providers also take over daily management tasks, allowing in-house IT teams to focus on more productive activities.

What are Colocation Services?

Colocation involves housing your applications and data in a physical facility that manages the information of multiple organizations. These data centers offer the connectivity, cooling, energy, space, and security you require for servers but may not have the capacity to handle onsite. If you plan to use colocation services, you must provide your own data management hardware. However, using your own equipment gives you free rein to use it according to your business needs.

Why Choose Colocation?

Since colocation functions as an intermediate step between managing an on-premise server and migrating to the cloud, it is ideal for organizations with an established physical IT infrastructure. Colocation services grant companies the same control over information that they would have in a private data center without forcing them to accrue additional expenses.

Some corporate data is more conducive for managing through colocation. Compared to cloud services, colocation is a more secure option. Businesses that store sensitive information in co-located servers are more likely to avoid compliance issues with industry regulations. Additionally, legacy applications often cost more to run in the cloud unless rewritten. Adjusting these applications is typically impractical, making them better suited for colocation.

Organizations also benefit from the insights provided by experienced colocation providers. These companies have extensive IT knowledge and can offer strategies for improving business efficiency and security. These techniques can ensure your business operates smoothly

Can Organizations Utilize Both Services?

While some businesses find using either cloud or colocation services beneficial, many prefer using both to maximize their options. In many cases, the advantages of the cloud balance out the setbacks of colocation and vice versa. For example, cloud servers provide greater flexibility with data storage, while colocation offers greater security for vital information.

A hybrid or multi-cloud approach enables companies to work with sensitive content in a private server and scale-up in the public cloud while simultaneously saving costs on in-house data management. Ultimately, there is no reason other than budget restraints to consider cloud vs colocation. 

How VPLS Can Help

Whether your company chooses cloud, colocation, or both services, you need a reliable provider to help you manage data and applications. At VPLS, we offer colocation and cloud services to assist with your IT needs.

The VPLS Cloud grants organizations access to various hosting, power, networking, and storage options, while our CloudHop™ capabilities provide on-ramp services to companies that need a low-latency and direct connection to a public cloud. We offer backup and recovery to help businesses withstand the effects of disaster situations and virtual desktop services that allow organizations to easily move between operating environments and do so affordably.

For colocation, VPLS provides customized cabinets, cages and suites that serve the unique needs of your company. Our experienced team can even help you rack and install your servers if you prefer to use your own equipment. We also supply cross connections through CloudHop™ and IP Transit services. Businesses that partner with us also enjoy easy access to implementation and training specialists for assistance.

Enhance Your Business with VPLS

With over 7,000 international clients and 68,000 servers under management, VPLS is a leading global provider for cloud-to-edge computing and technology solutions.

Reach out today to learn more about our cloud and colocation services.

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