I own and run a small network integration firm located in Greensboro, NC. I currently have a single server at EV1. However, I am looking to add an additional server and potentially move some of the client servers that I manage to the co-lo that I choose. Currently I manage 20+ servers split between RackSpace, EV1, and Equinix Secacus.
I will start out with the following equipment
(1) APC Masterswitch
(1) Netscreen Firewall
(2) Dell Servers (2650's)
(1) Spam Filtering Appliance
However, within a year I could easily add at least four or five more servers... In the beginning I need to keep my costs as low as possible, without giving up uptime or network quality.
My servers should start with very low traffic (currently less than 40GB per month at EV1) so that is not a huge issue for me right now. Basically after reading TONS of posts in this forum I am down to trying to pick between the following providers.
I am interesting in hearing what all of you think about what my best option is... I am an experienced network engineer so I do not need a lot of hand holding. Just a nice SOLID network, and quick support when I do have an issue (IE hardware swap out).
Start with these questions:
1) Where would you like your servers to be located?
2) Premium bandwidth and full redundancy for 100% uptime or "good enough" colo that may have outages, but costs less?
3) Is physical access to your servers important?
4) What OS will you be running? Is it important that the datacenter/colo company techs have knowledge of how to troubleshoot that OS in case you run into problems?
Also, it's worth noting that a lot of smaller providers will offer reboot ports and firewall service with colo packages. You may want to put those criteria on your list, as well. Also, serial console or remote KVM access might be nice for you to have if you choose a colo located more than a short drive from where you live.
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I guess what I am really interested in is hearing from folks who currently co-lo with any of these guys... I'm sure I'll get some spam -- but hey thats ok if I get some good information in the process.