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An in-house data centre vs. the cloud for your business

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in-house data centre vs. cloud

Each business has it's own set of conditions that will ultimately influence the choice between an in-house data centre and an outsourced cloud. However, there are some advantages and disadvantages to consider when making this choice.

In-house data centres can be costly, financially as well as resource intensive, however they provide complete control of your data and ensure that you aren't reliant on external services to enable your users to access the data that they require to do their jobs.

On the other hand, the cloud can be incredibly cost-effective without the need for the stress, staff and time required to run a data centre.

Wrestling with a big decision!

Moving your data storage is not a small decision, on the one hand you have the promise of saving resources. Your department could save finances and man power by moving from an in-house data centre to the cloud.

However, you need to be able to trust the cloud provider and ensure that your data is adequately backed-up at all times. You'll also need to consider the stability of your connectivity, with ethernet (leased lines) being the most stable, alongside a contingency plan should anything happen to that connection.

Your contingency, in the unlikely event that your ethernet (leased line) goes down, could include a backup connection via 4G, for example, or simply ensuring that your networks users would be able to access the cloud services remotely, e.g. at home or anywhere else with an internet connection.

The maturity of your business would also play a part in the decision making, as more established businesses that already have an in-house data centre would have to ask if it's worth the move, whereas startups without a data centre wouldn't even need to consider the potential impacts of a move.

The costs of running a data centre vs the cloud

Outside of the obvious energy and hardware costs, there is also the cost of the software packages, human resources and remote backup systems.

Costs don't just include financial costs as there is also the human resource element to factor into your total costs when running a data centre, including hardware configuration, software installs, software updates, data backup systems, remote backups, minimising the impact of changes, etc.

Using cloud based services reduces a lot of these costs both from a financial and resource perspective making it the most cost-effective choice.

Scaling considerations

Businesses are expected to grow. So, as your business grows, would you have the space, time and resource to expand your in-house data centre comfortably.

Scaling off-site cloud services should be a simple task, whereas scaling your data centre requires planning and resource allocation to acheive a successful expansion.

Conclusion

There are advantages and disadvantages to off-site cloud services and in-house data centres, so this may not be the easiest choice.

Cloud based services are alway much more cost-effective (financial and resource) than in-house data centres, but shifting your data into the cloud could cause problems in the event of a failure at the exchange. 

Backup systems are always important, either with some sort of remote backup or alternative 4G connection, as well as disaster recovery systems.

Find out what backup services are available for your business

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