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  1. #1

    New to co-location, so is this a good deal?

    I am moving off a shared web server and am setting up my own server. I am new to all this and would need some place to stick my server. A dedicated server is not an option. I already looked at them and it's cheaper for me to just buy my own and not pay someone $100 per month to "rent" a server. Anyway, I saw this promo and am wondering if any colo gurus out there think this is a reasonable deal:
    (quote from web site)
    1Mbps/100Mbps burst @ 95th percentile
    Redundant Internet connectivity
    Dedicated 100Mbps switchport
    Dedicated VLAN
    Dedicated router/gateway
    2U of secured cabinet colocation
    24x7x365 on-site technical support
    DNS hosting
    8 IP addresses (/29)
    Network monitoring/alert notification
    Cross-connect
    Shared 20amp circuit
    Bandwidth graphs and reports
    Secured garage parking
    24x7x365 facility access
    5 Remote Hands (15 minutes each)

    $195 month, no setup.

    Is this promo really giving me everything I need to co-locate my own server? Do you think there will be hidden charges down the road?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    You're basically looking at 1Mbps and 2U's of space for $195/month. This is pretty standard. The other features you mention are what you use to decide whether or not you go with them versus another colo provider. Most of the things that are listed are standard with all colo companies except the remote hands.

  3. #3
    You should be getting a quarter of a cabinet for that price, especially in a shared colo environment. Physical rackspace comes cheap and there's always plenty of it. Datacenters worldwide are massively empty and they'll do anything to sell the space. I can say this about pretty much every datacenter from LA to Sacramento, several of which I work in on a regular basis.

    If people are actually paying $200 a month for 2 Units and 1mbit, I should be in the colo reselling business, I've got probably 100U I'm not using in just one cage.

    -Matt

  4. #4
    It depends on the data center. If that's in a data center hundreds of miles away the civilization, then for that amount of money you may get a much better deal.

    If, on the other hand, it is located at PAIX, Equinix, etc, then you are getting a decent (but not spectacular pricing)
    www.zubrcom.net | Tel: 1-877-982-7266 / 1-267-298-3232 | [email protected][email protected]
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  5. #5
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    Sounds slightly high, but if it's top rate bandwidth in a top rate data center it's probably worth it. For top-rate bandwidth at $150 per mbit/sec and then 2u of space for $25 per u, that's really not a bad deal, if it's all quality stuff.
    Karl Zimmerman - Steadfast: Managed Dedicated Servers and Premium Colocation
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  6. #6
    To clarify previous posting:

    (First off, Zubrcom is right, if you're talking about an absolute first-rate, world class facility that's packed to the brim physically and providing bandwidth from five or six major providers, $200 for 2U and 1mbit of bandwidth is a fair, but not outstanding deal. If you're just looking for regular, functional colo with a few upstream providers, it's still fair, but a lot further from outstanding. )

    But let's look at the math:

    Assuming a 48U rack broken down into 24 sets of 2U was filled at $200/per 2U.

    Assume that between those customers, the average monthly bandwidth used was about 14-15mbit.

    Assume that you're smart enough to colo somewhere that has an inexpensive bandwidth contract, either because they provide their own bandwidth (XO, Qwest, etc...) or because they're intelligent. For the sake of argument, we'll assume the cost of bandwidth to said colo facility is $90 a meg.

    The rack would be earning $4800 gross, minus about $1300 in bandwidth and maybe $200-300 in power.

    That rack would be earning over $3k a month based solely on the amount of physical space sold to individual clients. Meanwhile, if you bought an entire rack at your run-of-the-mill colo with a 10 meg CIR on a 100mbit circuit, you wouldn't pay anywhere near $4800. Can you imagine? That would be $480 a megabit if you don't take the rackspace itself into acocunt. Assume $800 for the rack, you're still talking about $400 a megabit. Who would pay that?

    So hey, if people are actually willing to pay $200 a month for 2U and a megabit, we should all be in the colo reselling business. Buy yourself a rack and 10 megs, make $2-3k a month on it.

    Anyway, long story short, the $200 a month for 2U and 1mbit still isn't a bad deal for the end user if it's really all you're going to need, simply because it's one of the lowest end colo options available to you. But you should be able to negotiate for more physical space just to have it available. Physical space in shared colo areas is very inexpensive and sales agents are usually quite willing to give away a bit more space if you ask for it. Even upping the deal to 4U or 8U would be worth it.

    A quarter rack will be a stretch for major colos, but they'll often give in to a moderate increase if it's a dealbreaker just to get the business and fill out their shared hosting area. Plus, the more rackspace you have, the more likely your servers will blow past that 1mbit you bought and make them some extra money in the overage expense.

    -Matt

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    My question is what about quality. For example, if you want a provider like Internap you can expect to pay $250 per Mbps. And facilities like Equinix cost like $950 a rack, plus $200 cross connects, $250 for power. There is no way you could sell something like that for $200 per 2U.

  8. #8
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    Ahhhh angelvalley you may not want to go in to the colocation business.

    There are a lot of realities you have seemed to missed.

    1. It may be a 42U rack but you lose 2-8U for switches and other things. Unless you pay for an extra power drop, $100-$250 per month, you can only get 15-20 amps worth of power, or 15-20 servers. So even if you wanted to put 30 servers in a rack you can add $200-$500 more per rack per month in costs.

    2. To run 3 or 4 quality bandiwdth providers costs a little bit more than just dropping a T1 or so. What do you think the cost of 3 fiber lines is per month?

    3. You kind of forgot the price for routers, switches and a few other minor pieces of equipment. I've got over $22,000 just in APC reboot switchs, I won't even tell you what twenty three Cisco 2924 switches, plus a pair of 7507 Cisco routers and four Cisco 515E firewalls cost.

    4. You forget you have to pay a 24/7 support staff when you own a real colocation business. Oh, they should know how to do things besides reboot a computer.

    5. Contrary to poular opinion you also have right to eat and pay rent.

    Now tell me $200.00 for 2U is kind of expensive.
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    Atlanta, GA and Las Vegas, NV. Colocation

  9. #9

    Thanks guys

    From what I've read here the price actually seems quite reasonable. The data center seems to be real top rate. My friend took me inside Equinix in San Jose once and I did go inside Level3 in San Francisco before. Those are both impressive places. But the place I'm looking at is called 365 Main. They don't seem to be a big name but I see ALOT of people moving in and they are close to my apartment.

  10. #10
    Really you have to take into account the size of what he wants when judging whether or not its a good price. For just 2U and 1mbps your not going to get any rcok bottom deals come to you.

  11. #11
    Originally posted by mgphoto
    Ahhhh angelvalley you may not want to go in to the colocation business.
    Not to be disrespectful, but I've built about 3 full size, major datacenters from the floor on up. It's pretty much what I did for a living from 99-03, I'm pretty familiar with the business. But I'll clarify my points, you bring up valid arguments.

    Originally posted by mgphoto

    There are a lot of realities you have seemed to missed.

    1. It may be a 42U rack but you lose 2-8U for switches and other things. Unless you pay for an extra power drop, $100-$250 per month, you can only get 15-20 amps worth of power, or 15-20 servers. So even if you wanted to put 30 servers in a rack you can add $200-$500 more per rack per month in costs.
    2U for a switch, max. If you need remote reboot support and the hardware to do it, that's another story and the charge for the service makes up for the loss of space. Nothing else necessary, all other gear should be in the comms cage. Power runs down the back posts.

    Originally posted by mgphoto

    2. To run 3 or 4 quality bandiwdth providers costs a little bit more than just dropping a T1 or so. What do you think the cost of 3 fiber lines is per month?
    If you're simply reselling colo space, it's not your concern. You get 100mbit copper to your rack, trunked from your access switch or router to their core switch or router. The facility worries about their upstream connections.

    I should have been more clear. I was arguing the point based on the concept of reselling colo space inside an existing facilty, not starting your own facility. Not by any stretch of the imagination.

    Originally posted by mgphoto

    3. You kind of forgot the price for routers, switches and a few other minor pieces of equipment. I've got over $22,000 just in APC reboot switchs, I won't even tell you what twenty three Cisco 2924 switches, plus a pair of 7507 Cisco routers and four Cisco 515E firewalls cost.
    Yeah, again, only relevant if you run your own entire facility, not reselling, and you're completely correct.

    Originally posted by mgphoto

    4. You forget you have to pay a 24/7 support staff when you own a real colocation business. Oh, they should know how to do things besides reboot a computer.
    Completely true, but again, not relevant to *reselling* colo.

    Originally posted by mgphoto

    5. Contrary to poular opinion you also have right to eat and pay rent.
    Amen brother.

    Originally posted by mgphoto

    Now tell me $200.00 for 2U is kind of expensive.
    $200 for 2U is kind of expensive.

    If you're running your own complete colo, all of your points are valid.

    If you're reselling a rack you're paying maybe 2 grand a month for from an existing facility, bandwidth included, you'd be making a lot of money selling 2U for $200.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    Toronto, Canada
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    7
    To answer your question, the $200/month for all the services listed in your question is a desent price. Yes you will find colo for 1U with X amount of bandwidth for $70/month and even for $50 a month, however you will get the good old "you get what you pay for".

    Even though the main definition of colo is for you to ship the server and for the hosting company to connect it to internet.
    All the little things that a web hosting company is providing you with such as 24/7 support (definetly test out by giving them a call at 4 am), quality bandwidth, good infrastructure, etc --- it all has a cost assosiated with it. Therefore from experience you're getting a good deal, however alway get some of the existing clietns for reference, ping their IPs, test theri support, etc.

  13. #13
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    Re: Thanks guys

    Originally posted by terute
    From what I've read here the price actually seems quite reasonable. The data center seems to be real top rate. My friend took me inside Equinix in San Jose once and I did go inside Level3 in San Francisco before. Those are both impressive places. But the place I'm looking at is called 365 Main. They don't seem to be a big name but I see ALOT of people moving in and they are close to my apartment.
    In the Bay Area, you can find a lot better deal than that. Keep looking.

    As to those who were putting price quotes together, mgphoto addressed a lot of things I would have -- but you have to remember that "all those datacenters with empty racks" have to pay for power as well. They may have empty racks, but once those are filled with 40A of servers, the datacenter's power bill will increase by a huge amount. You cannot just add together your cost for 1 rack + 15A (or 20A) + bandwidth and get a reasonable estimate of the costs for colo.
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  14. #14
    If it is close to your apartment and you may need to go work on the server that may be worth $50-100 per month. If you feel it is a good value and you trust the people then go with them. I assume when you were there you got to meet some of the people and liked what you saw.

    Are there cheaper? Yes. But at that rate you know they are making money and should be around for a while. I would say go with them and start looking at others for Plan B. Then come back and update your own post and tell us all whether you still think it is a good deal.

  15. #15
    Join Date
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    Originally posted by mgphoto
    3. You kind of forgot the price for routers, switches and a few other minor pieces of equipment. I've got over $22,000 just in APC reboot switchs, I won't even tell you what twenty three Cisco 2924 switches, plus a pair of 7507 Cisco routers and four Cisco 515E firewalls cost.
    I'd like to second all the points mgphoto made in his original post. Folks offering co-location in high end facilities such as Equinix are not making their money on selling rack space, they are making it on bandwidth. Why? You don't pay $90/Mb there, because you have carrier choice. If you need cheap rack space for your farm of legacy Sun e450s and A10000 arrays that eat 200 sqft and do 100Mb/s aggregate, locate yourself at a cheap carrier facility. If your bandwidth-to-rack-space density is a bit more "modern," pay to be someplace where you can buy transit at a reasonable rate.

    I'm also going to knock the Cisco 7507 reference, because those are antiquated and not a good example of what an ISP with modern equipment would purchase. No doubt they were great boxes when mgphoto bought them, though. May your journey be free of Online-Insertion-and-Reboot
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  16. #16
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    Average Price

    Originally posted by KarlZimmer
    Sounds slightly high, but if it's top rate bandwidth in a top rate data center it's probably worth it. For top-rate bandwidth at $150 per mbit/sec and then 2u of space for $25 per u, that's really not a bad deal, if it's all quality stuff.
    I agree with Karl! If it is quality bandwidth then you are definitely getting a good deal!
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