When you draw the curtain back on the timeline of office work over the years, we’re not that far removed from storing “data” in manila folders in metal file cabinets. But today’s digital “file cabinets” have come a long way, comprising rows of servers safeguarded by passwords, encryption, and more. Data is the lifeblood of business operations, and it needs to be well protected.
Since business data is irreplaceable, it’s important that you store it in a place that offers the highest levels of physical and digital protections. Some companies invest enough to store their data onsite, but for most others it’s wise to consider storing data at an offsite data center with robust data backup services.
So what are the differences, and which is best for your business?
Onsite Data Storage
Onsite data storage is what the name implies, storing all of your data within the confines of your physical business space. Businesses usually allocate a specialized room within one of their buildings to house their servers.
Adequate data protection requires temperature control, filtered power, redundant fiber links, recovery after natural disasters, high-end physical and digital security, and more. This can quickly become very expensive.
That’s why onsite data storage is really only recommended for businesses who have the capacity and resources to institute these comprehensive protective measures in their own facility. These tend to be larger enterprises and even many of them prefer to house their critical information in a better-protected third-party location.
Third-Party Data Center
A data center is a third-party building dedicated to network and server infrastructure. Data is stored in servers in racks within locked cabinets. The storage media used by data centers has changed over the years as technology has improved. Today’s data centers are able to encrypt, organize, and store your data digitally and give you accessible, backed-up copies of it at any time.
Six Advantages of a Data Center over Onsite Storage
Two fundamental differences between in-house data storage and external data centers are location and commitment. Data centers are built from the ground up to store massive amounts of data. Data center organizations are created to protect that data from a wide variety of modern threats, both natural and man-made. Data centers hold six distinct advantages over in-house data storage, and we’ll list them below.
Solid-state drives are just beginning to come down enough in price to be viable solutions for large-scale data storage. In the meantime, physical hard drives are the go-to devices for storing most data. Hard drives have moving parts, and these parts do break down from time to time. When a platter of data goes down in the server room at the office, valuable man-hours are spent to fix the problem. When you co-locate or host at a data center, labor is not a concern since it’s the data center’s responsibility to fix any issues.
Third-party data centers employ advanced IT solutions to keep servers running as efficiently as possible. Regular preventive maintenance eliminates the need for most emergency maintenance. This saves time and money and keeps uptime near 100% so you can always access your data.
2. Power Costs
Keeping power costs low is difficult for businesses who have a room full of server equipment. The infrastructure for efficient power distribution is quite expensive. Server rooms are often located in basements or one of the lower floors in a building to aid temperature control. Hot air rises, and server rooms can get hot without proper cooling procedures.
Think about how much power it costs to run your servers and properly cool the room with air conditioning and fans. This can be a sizable power bill every month. Data centers typically design their facilities to optimize power distribution and cooling efficiency. Power costs are spread over many servers, resulting in additional cost effectiveness.
Hacking and ransomware are on the rise as threat actors create new and ever more sophisticated viruses to attack your systems and steal or corrupt your data. Without strict cybersecurity measures in place, your data is vulnerable to tampering and theft.
Physical security is equally important — a disgruntled employee or natural disaster can lead to major data loss if your information is not adequately safeguarded. Data centers have strict security procedures for entrance into the building (fences, locks, and man traps) as well as multiple levels of digital security on their servers and throughout their network to prevent hacking from the outside and detect threats. Regular backups and disaster recovery solutions protect your data from both natural and man-made catastrophes.
Businesses have only so much space to work with inside of their facilities. Servers take up valuable real estate within a building, especially when they are protected with secure entrances, man traps, etc. Hosting in a data center allows a business to allocate freed up space for other productive purposes and often leaves offices cleaner and better organized without tangled network cables, power cords, and spare parts inventory lying around.
5. Long-Term Costs
Building and maintaining a server room, power and cooling costs, redundant fiber internet feeds, and all the software and equipment it takes to digitally protect servers and data these days means expenses can really add up quickly. Storing data in-house over the long term is more expensive for many organizations than outsourcing to a data center. Plus, with a modern, well-managed, highly secure data center such as the one Nuvek has just built in Idaho, you avoid the massive cost and potential losses resulting from a catastrophic data breach..
6. Work Efficiency and Improved Uptime
Data centers keep watch over their servers 24/7, performing regular preventive maintenance, applying updates and patches on schedule, and fixing small problems as quickly as they appear before they escalate into big problems. Work at your office does not stop because a server is down. When you team up with a data center, your organization keeps downtime to a minimum and ensures high levels of business continuity.
Nuvek Data Center
Nuvek Data Center has provided data storage and IT services since 2019 at their state-of-the-art facility in Idaho. Call Nuvek today for all of your business IT and data storage needs and find out how Nuvek can protect your valuable business data.