I'm looking for a co-location provider in Austin, TX. I'm fairly new to the concept of co-location, so I'm not sure what reasonable expectations are. I plan on just hosting one server for now, and will need DNS services. I'm assuming direct access to the box onsite is typically available, so I would certainly like this privilege 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including holidays, in case my server crashes or I screw it up installing something remotely.
If anyone has any experience with co-location services in Austin, please let me know. Of course I'd like to save money, but I'd rather pay a little extra and have reliable service.
You can check out ThePlanet for info on colo, though I presume they may be too far for you, you can at least get a lot of info on it from there site you might be able to apply as you look more locally.
Does it buy me anything to have colocation services local to me? I was under the impression originally that I could visit the network center and physically access my equipment for troubleshooting, etc., but now that I'm looking into this more, I'm not sure if that's the typical model colocation services use?
It will generally depend on who you are collocating with and how much you are collocating. If you are collocating multiple servers it is likely you will be provided with access to the datacenter so you can have access to your equipment, this will however really depend on the company, additionally some providers require notice before comming as well. In short, it really depends on the company. Some will allow access, some will not; just make sure to ask before signing and get all the details.
My provider in Portland, OR (Easy Street -- great company) provided 24x7 for 1u in a 'condo' type housing. The risk with condo housing is that everyone in that rack has access to the front of your server. But it's a pretty decent price.
Let me know what you find.. Next year I might be interested in hosting a box myself. (I'm over in cowledge station...)