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10 questions to ask your data centre provider

Published 1st February 2021

Choosing the best-fit colocation data centre for your business is a critical decision.  You need to be sure you can entrust your valuable data and infrastructure to a provider that is going to meet your technical requirements and offer the support and security you need.

Here are 10 questions you should be asking when considering a move to a new facility. If you’re not looking to migrate anytime soon, it’s worth using them to check how closely your current provider is meeting your needs.

 

1.What are the connectivity options?

Why it matters: You need fast, reliable data connections – both within the facility itself, and for onward connectivity to other data centres and sites where you have equipment or users.

Amito’s connectivity solutions include point to point wavelengths from our Reading data centre to anywhere on our network; ethernet layer 2 service – connecting any two data centres on the network with seamless dual-site deployments; and IP transit – connecting any site on the network to the internet.

 

2.Is the data centre carrier-neutral?

Why it matters: Not being tied to one service provider will give you the greatest level of flexibility and choice over which carriers you want to use, now and in the future.

All the data centres we work with are carrier-neutral. Our Reading facility offers a wide range of options for network providers, including BT, CityFibre, Colt, KCom, Glide, Openreach, SSE Telecoms, Exponential-e, Virgin Media, Vodafone and Luminet. If you have a preferred carrier that is not currently on site just let us know, we are happy to add more.

 

3.What security measures are in place?

Why it matters: Your environment, data and services should be safeguarded by multiple layers of physical protection that keep unauthorised individuals from accessing the site.

Amito’s Reading datacentre has a ring of defences – including a 24/7 on-site security presence, perimeter fences, a biometric scan entry system, HD CCTV and full access control with audit trail. All of our server cabinets are fully lockable, and our customers get their own unique combination code.

 

4.Does the data centre offer 24/7 remote hands support?

Why it matters: You don’t want to be travelling back and forth to the data centre every time something needs doing, checking or fixing. An efficient and expert support team will save you time and money, and tackle issues fast to minimise downtime.

Amito’s Reading data centre is backed by round-the-clock support from third-line engineers. We also provide the highest level of remote hands support for infrastructure hosted in third-party locations – so wherever you have a presence you’re covered by one central support team.

 

5.Do they offer flexible power options?

Why it matters: The ability to grow or decrease power draw on demand as your needs change will enable you to manage costs, as well as expand quickly and easily in line with requirements.

All of Amito’s packages include flexible power options, ranging from 2 or 4 Amps for a quarter rack, 4 or 8 Amps for a half rack, and up to 32 Amps for a full rack.

 

6.What’s the data centre operating PUE (power usage effectiveness)?

Why it matters: As well as concerns around sustainability it’s important to remember that power efficiency has a direct impact on your costs.  Power prices will fluctuate, and a lack of efficiency will see your prices rising in the future as providers pass rising costs on to their customers. You can get a handle on this by establishing the PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) ratio of your provider. PUE describes how efficiently a data centre uses energy.

Our data centre operates at a PUE of 1.12, making it one of the UK’s most energy-efficient colocation sites. In fact, we won two awards last year for our commitment to sustainability, our resulting low operating PUE and the carbon savings we achieved.

 

7.Where and how can I view and manage my infrastructure?

Why it matters: Even if you like to be ‘hands off’, you will still need visibility of and control over your installation. You’ll also need to know how you can access the site in person if necessary.

Amito’s customer portal gives clients an instant view of everything we host for them, including network and power usage, details of all rack locations and cross-connects, and performance data. They also communicate with us via the portal, book remote hands support, and use it to arrange site access.

 

8.How easy is it to scale up (or down)?

Why it matters: You need to be able to expand or reduce your footprint as demands change and workloads fluctuate, without fuss or unexpected costs.   You don’t want to put your business in a situation where you’ll need to migrate to another facility the next time you experience growth.

Amito’s flexibility enables companies to scale rapidly – we can increase or decrease rack space, power, cooling and bandwidth quickly and easily.

 

9.How does the data centre use automation within the business?

Why it matters: Data centres that automate routine tasks are able to run a leaner operation, keeping costs low, and allowing engineers to focus their expertise where it’s needed.

Our portal joins up every system across Amito, we can easily monitor and manage every aspect of the business, joining up and automating processes. which makes us exceptionally efficient.

 

10.Does the provider own, operate, and maintain the data centre – or are they just a reseller/wholesaler or middleman?

Why it matters: You need to know who you’re dealing with, and who’s looking after your kit. And for the partnership to be effective, your provider needs an intimate knowledge of the facility, its layout and its resources.

We built our data centre from the ground up, painstakingly designing every aspect of the infrastructure, capability and capacity. Our senior team remain closely involved in the business, and customers have direct access to their knowledge and experience.

 

If you have any other questions or concerns we are all ears, contact us on 0118 380 0599 or email info@amito.com