Browse Definitions :
Definition

colocation (colo)

Contributor(s): Don Brancato and David S. Jones

A colocation (colo) is a data center facility in which a business can rent space for servers and other computing hardware.

Typically, a colo provides the building, cooling, power, bandwidth and physical security while the customer provides servers and storage. Space in the facility is often leased by the rack, cabinet, cage or room. Many colos have extended their offerings to include managed services that support their customers' business initiatives.

There are several reasons a business might choose a colo over building its own data center, but one of the main drivers is the capital expenditures (CAPEX) associated with building, maintaining and updating a large computing facility. In the past, colos were often used by private enterprises for disaster recovery. Today, colos are especially popular with cloud service providers.

For some organizations, colocation may be an ideal solution, but there can be downsides to this approach. Distance can translate into increased travel costs when equipment needs to be touched manually and colo customers can find themselves locked into long-term contracts, which may prevent them from re-negotiating rates when prices fall.  It is important for an organization to closely examine their colo's service level agreements (SLAs) so as not to be surprised by hidden charges.


 

 

 

 

 

This was last updated in August 2015

Next Steps

How much do you know about colocation and cloud services?

Continue Reading About colocation (colo)

Join the conversation

1 comment

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

Additionally there are wholesale data center facilities and multi-tenant colocation data center facilities. A data center might look for colocation in a wholesale facility and a business would look for colocation in a multi-tenant retail colocation facility.
Cancel

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

SearchCompliance

  • PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard)

    The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a widely accepted set of policies and procedures intended to ...

  • risk management

    Risk management is the process of identifying, assessing and controlling threats to an organization's capital and earnings.

  • compliance framework

    A compliance framework is a structured set of guidelines that details an organization's processes for maintaining accordance with...

SearchSecurity

  • Trojan horse (computing)

    In computing, a Trojan horse is a program downloaded and installed on a computer that appears harmless, but is, in fact, ...

  • identity theft

    Identity theft, also known as identity fraud, is a crime in which an imposter obtains key pieces of personally identifiable ...

  • DNS over HTTPS (DoH)

    DNS over HTTPS (DoH) is a relatively new protocol that encrypts domain name system traffic by passing DNS queries through a ...

SearchHealthIT

  • telemedicine (telehealth)

    Telemedicine is the remote delivery of healthcare services, such as health assessments or consultations, over the ...

  • Project Nightingale

    Project Nightingale is a controversial partnership between Google and Ascension, the second largest health system in the United ...

  • medical practice management (MPM) software

    Medical practice management (MPM) software is a collection of computerized services used by healthcare professionals and ...

SearchDisasterRecovery

SearchStorage

  • M.2 SSD

    An M.2 SSD is a solid-state drive (SSD) that conforms to a computer industry specification and is used in internally mounted ...

  • kilobyte (KB or Kbyte)

    A kilobyte (KB or Kbyte) is a unit of measurement for computer memory or data storage used by mathematics and computer science ...

  • virtual memory

    Virtual memory is a memory management capability of an operating system (OS) that uses hardware and software to allow a computer ...

Close