As any technology that is new more commonplace, to the point of commoditisation, price starts to become one of the main points of differentiation. You’ve only got to look at the way mobile phones are sold to see that in action on a basis that is daily.
It’s also present where cloud hosting is concerned. No one would argue that price isn’t important; it is, rightly, a vital consideration that is commercial of purchase. But when pricing is the focal point of the conversation it can be all too easy to lose sight of the combination of factors that go into determining that price. Particularly when it comes to technology that, because of its nature that is utility-like nearly taken for granted.
It’s all too easy to switch off only a little and start to become ambivalent towards the things we are acquainted with, and so it never hurts become reminded not just of exactly what something does, but the way the nuances of its performance, and prices, can affect the rest of our working lives.
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Tiers tend to be more than just stones that are stepping
That’s truly the full case when it comes to uk colocation tiers. This methodology that is standard defining
uk colocation engineering standards, in tiers one-to-four, lends it self too easily to being dismissed as superficially obvious. In the end, Tier 1 is the least well-performing and Tier 4 is the better, Tier 1 the cheapest option and Tier 4 the many costly right? When you’ve got your face around that, what else can there be?
Therein lies part of the problem with taxonomies; easy to read labels can hide a wealth of valuable information.
Getting your face around a number of the differences in the tiers will mean you’re able to make better decisions when it comes to choosing a colocation uk, and most significantly you’ll avoid a true number of potential pitfalls.
Crunching the numbers
First let’s consider the uptime differences between the four tiers.
Tier 1 equates to the basic requirements for a cheap colocation – an individual distribution course for power and cooling serving the processing hardware, and non-redundant capacity. Annually, uptime would be during the rate of 99.671% and include 1,730.4 mins (1.20167 days) of downtime.
Tier 2 infrastructure offers you capacity that is redundant can be swapped in and out without causing system failure. It will also include one distribution path that is non-redundant. Tier 2 uk server colocation aren’t designed to be fault tolerant when it comes to things like natural disasters, nevertheless they have 99.741% uptime, and 1,362.2 minutes of downtime, per year. That equates to almost 23 hours.
Tier 3 Rackspace colocation have actually one active and one distribution path that is passive. They’re built to be more resilient, although they’re not intended to be completely immune to disasters. But they will better withstand them, thanks to higher capacity equipment. Tier 3 1u colocation pricing offer 99.982% of uptime and 94.7 minutes of downtime per year.
Tier 4 are fault tolerant with two active distribution paths, offering the highest level of capacity, including mission-critical levels of tolerance, fully redundant subsystems and components with concurrent maintainability. They also have dual-powered cooling systems. Uptime is 99.995% per year, and the downtime that is annual 26.3 minutes.
Get the balance suitable for your online business
Unless you are running genuinely mission-critical applications and downtime is utterly unconscionable, you are unlikely to want to shoulder the not insignificant investment a Tier 4 data center will require, which could be as much as double the cost of a Tier 3. Tier 4 also involves a very high environmental overhead, and a much higher carbon footprint.
Similarly, unless all you’re doing is running a simple information-only, non-transactional site, you should walk away from Tier 1 too.
Identifying which for the two tiers that are remaining right for you comes down to understanding the effect of a few of the differences.
Also at the headline level, the difference in annual downtime between Tier 2 and Tier 3 is substantial, from almost one day that is full to just over an hour and a half, respectively. Are there going to be cost implications? Of course there are. But pause, it takes to fly from London to Sydney if you will, and reflect on the difference in those downtime numbers; one is the time. The other may be the amount of a football match, with a little stoppage time added on.
That’s a considerable difference, and you’d need to believe carefully about the potential for exposing your organization to harmful consequences as a result of it. A lot can happen in 24 hours.
You need to map that against what’s being offered by your data center if you have SLAs in place with your clients and customers that include penalties and reparations for missed application availability. If unexpected outages prompt modest financial reparations from important computer data center, for example, exactly how does that compare with the potential losses for the business due to those outages? Will it matter if customers arrive at your can’t and site transact with you? Will your clients invoke penalty clauses in SLAs if applications they rely upon are affected?
Making the right choice
Weighing up which data center tier is going to be the fit that is best for your business operations is more than a simple price vs uptime equation. Price differentials are inexorably lined to tiers, but you can’t do a like-for-like comparison in these circumstances unless you are fully up-to-speed with all of the implications. You’ll need to peel straight back some layers and determine what the implications are in the event the lights go off.
Hope for the most effective, get ready for the worst? Perhaps. But know about the need certainly to do some risk evaluation when it comes to deciding where your business shall be hosted. Knowing which data center tiers your potential providers operate from will always be an essential first step.