Choosing the right server for your needs: Data Center vs. Cloud

9 Mins read
Data Center vs. Cloud

Data center and Cloud are two different types of servers with their own pros and cons.

Basically, cloud data services offer the remote version of a data center; they are usually located far away from your company’s location and provide access to data via the internet.

With cloud data services, you do not have to worry about performing ongoing maintenances (software and hardware), thereby reducing data cost.

A data center is typically located close to a company’s physical location, and data is mainly accessed via a local area network (in place of the internet when compared to the Cloud). Data centers are generally more expensive, but they tend to be more reliable.

On the other hand, the Cloud is usually cheaper, but it may be less reliable- especially if you’re not using a reputable provider.

If you’re thinking about moving your business to either one, it’s essential to understand the differences between both so you can make an informed decision and know what to expect from each option.

This blog post will explore these differences in detail so you can decide which type of server is best for your needs.

What is a Data Center?

Data centers are physical locations that house servers. There’s typically a data center for each company or organization hosting data, but some companies share to save on costs.

Data Centers often have technical staff available 24 hours per day and can respond quickly if there is an issue with your server, such as a virus infection (although this type of assistance usually comes at an additional cost).

Startups may choose to create their own private data center to avoid paying fees and customize it how they want- from backup power sources all the way down to hardware specifications.

However, doing so means you’ll need more capital upfront versus renting space within another provider’s data center (i.e., Amazon Web Services), which will likely offer better pricing in the long term.

What are the types of Data Centers?

There are three traditional types of data centers:

  • Private Data Centers
  • Public Data Centers
  • Hybrid Hosting Solutions

Public data centers, like those operated by Amazon Web Services (AWS), offer lower pricing.

Still, it’s not as customizable, and you may not be able to control the physical location of your server, which can result in slow network connectivity from other servers nearby.

On the flip side, private data center providers have more flexibility on where your server is located, which means faster connections with others doing business within a similar geographic area.

A hybrid hosting solution will give you both options without having to make an upfront investment into building out a private data center versus renting space for their use elsewhere.

In contrast, cloud hosting is a great option when you don’t need to host data for very long periods or access data from anywhere other than where the cloud provider allows you to.

What is Cloud?

Cloud hosting is a service that allows users to store data on servers that are remotely located and access it from any device connected to the internet. If you’re looking for an easy way of storing data, Cloud hosting may be just what you need.

The cloud hosting service provides offsite data storage for the user, which means that they don’t need to worry about maintaining their backup.

Cloud hosting comes with many benefits and some drawbacks as well. One such benefit is that it offers a high level of security because all data resides on remote servers rather than being stored locally on your computer or laptop.

Cloud hosting providers offer their clients reliable services at reasonable rates, making them highly sought after among those looking for quality storage solutions on the web.

However, not every provider offers high levels of security, so you need to choose wisely before hopping into any deal without doing some research first.

What are the types of Cloud computing?

There are three types of cloud computing: public, private, and hybrid.

Public Cloud: this type of data center is available to anyone who has access to the internet.

Private Cloud: this type can be accessed only by a specific company or organization with an agreement that governs how it will be used and administered.

Hybrid Cloud: This means that there are both public and private components to provide cost-effective services for all types of customers.

Data Center vs Cloud (Pros and Cons)

Now, let’s take a look at the Pros and Cons of these two hosting options.

Advantages of Data Centers:

  • Offers data redundancy and security – Data Center hosting is backed by a redundant power source and has highly developed fire prevention systems to keep the data safe, which can be an issue with most cloud providers who use shared infrastructure.
  • Provides greater control over how your data will be used.
  • Lower risk of downtime because it operates its own hardware and does not depend on another provider’s servers for storage or processing capability – this means that you’re less likely to experience outages caused by other customers’ usage patterns since there are no sharing facilities when using these services.
  • Data Centers provide better uptime and more stability when compared to cloud hosting.
  • The data center is on-site, so the latency will be lower than a cloud provider’s data centers which are located somewhere else, meaning that there would be less lag time between your device and the server.

Disadvantages of Data Centers:

  • More expensive in general due to their private nature – This means you may need to spend upwards of $1000/month for them, whereas a good quality shared cloud plan can cost as low as $20-$30 per month with some providers like Google Cloud or Amazon Web Services (AWS).
  • Less flexible because they typically have strict terms for usage that leave no room for customization.
  • Lack of data portability. If you want to switch providers, then your data would need to be transferred, and it’s not a quick or easy process that can take days depending on the size and complexity of the transfer project.
  • They are more complex than cloud hosting, so they require a lot more knowledge and experience for maintenance tasks like backups.
  • Data Centers may not offer redundancy, which means that all the data will be lost if there is an outage on their location.

Advantages of Cloud:

  • The most obvious and immediate advantage is the flexibility it offers.
  • Cloud hosting options are more affordable than data center costs, ranging from $400 per month with some providers like Google Cloud or Amazon Web Services (AWS).
  • They can be scaled up quickly without any downtime as long as there is enough capacity available on the cloud provider’s side. This allows companies to accommodate sudden surges in traffic by adding another server automatically instead of waiting days for a new one to arrive at their doorstep.
  • Data moves seamlessly between servers, so data loss due to an outage will not affect all your content and information; only stored locally will be affected. If something goes wrong with one storage node, data will seamlessly move to the other node.
  • Startup friendly – new companies can start cheap by starting with low storage capacities and scaling up as needed.

Disadvantages of Cloud Hosting:

  • The Cloud has fundamental limitations on the amount of data and resources stored, which means you need to decide in advance what your needs are. If you want to store more data than is available with one provider, you may have to find a different service altogether.
  • When using virtual machines for cloud hosting, it’s important not to overestimate how many users will use them at any given time because this could lead to an overage – paying for capacity that was never needed.
  • While a significant advantage of the Cloud is its ability to move data when needed seamlessly, this can also be disadvantageous. Data stored in one location becomes more vulnerable because all the information is situated on one node.

To help you get started, here is a cloud hosting selection offering optimal sets of server resources, while providing the best services in terms of performance, features, and pricing.

You can check them out below:

What is the difference between Data Center and Cloud computing?

A data center is an on-site physical location that houses the hardware needed to store, access, and process data.

Cloud hosting services are a form of cloud computing where servers aren’t housed in one centralized data center but instead spread across multiple locations.

This means you need to decide in advance what your needs are. If you want to store more data than one provider, you will need to migrate to another provider.

Other advantages include having direct control over software updates or installations and having users share processing power when there’s not enough demand for all equipment (i.e. during off-hours).

The Cloud also offers scalability – making adjusting capacity easier without any downtime if necessary – while at the same time being more cost-effective.

Cloud hosting providers can go out of business or decide to close their doors on short notice for any number of reasons – and while some allow you to export data from these services, there is no guarantee that the provider will give you enough warning should something happen before they do so themselves.

That means an emergency downtime situation could leave companies with little recourse when trying to get everything back up and running as quickly as possible without incurring hefty consulting fees on top of hardware costs due to lost data.

This isn’t true for Datacenters as most times, the hardware and software are managed by the company or companies utilizing them instead of an external entity.

Is Cloud Computing cheaper than on-premises Data Center?

Cloud computing is a cost-effective alternative to on-premise data centers.

Cost savings can be obtained by using the public cloud with a pay-for-what-you-use model and avoiding capital expenditure (CAPEX) in building your own data center infrastructure, including servers, storage devices, cooling systems, etc.

However, this could mean that some companies cannot adapt their business models as they need physical access to equipment, such as when performing maintenance or upgrades, mainly if these changes occur at an inconvenient time of day.

How much does Cloud Computing cost?

The cost of cloud computing varies depending on the workloads and requirements.

For example, a small business may find that the monthly costs for getting access to data center space are too high compared to what they need.

They would be better off using cloud services instead, where some providers offer plans as low as $100 per month for up to 100GB of storage.

Cloud Computing prices also depend on whether you are purchasing resources in bulk or paying hourly rates; it can range from $0.05-$0.30/hour when looking at the Amazon Web Services pricing model (AWS).

How much do data centers cost?

Costs for data centers vary depending on size and location. A typical data center can cost upwards of $850,000 per year in electricity alone, not to mention the operation costs like HVAC equipment repairs or replacement and repairs when there is a power outage.

The more sophisticated your data center needs are, the higher that price will go up since you’ll deal with more significant issues than if it was just an office space environment.

One way that companies have been able to keep their expenses down has been through colocation space where they lease a portion of server storage from another company’s facility, which can range anywhere between $0-$150/month based on what type of business you’re running and the size of the data center you need.

Suppose you’re going to be hosting your website on a cloud server. In that case, they will typically charge approximately $700-$800 per month for an enterprise-level account which offers more storage and bandwidth than what’s available in their basic package; however, other providers offer cheaper packages at around $100/month, so it all depends on how much space and traffic your site needs before deciding which one is right for you.

To keep in mind with cloud hosting, some companies require contracts of 12 or even 18 months while others only require agreements of between 30-90 days.

If you don’t want any contract obligations whatsoever, then colocation might be best suited for businesses that need more room to grow.

How does cloud hosting charge customers?

Cloud hosting providers typically charge their customers monthly based on the amount of storage and bandwidth they need.

Generally, enterprise-level accounts cost around $700-$800 per month; however, other providers offer cheaper packages at about $100/month, so it all depends on how much space and traffic your site needs before deciding which one is right for you.

Is Data Center more secure than Cloud?

Data centers typically have a lot of security in place that makes them more secure than cloud hosting.

This is because data center providers often are not only dealing with the data from one customer but can be storing data for hundreds or even thousands of other clients all at once, which means they take their job to keep this information safe very seriously.

Some examples of how Data Center protects your information include 24 hour surveillance, a clean room environment, and biometrics access control locks on most doors.

Cloud servers are usually accessed by way of an internet connection, so while these companies do offer some level of protection, there is also the risk that hackers could break through and affect multiple customers’ accounts simultaneously (making them much easier targets).

However, if you are looking for a more affordable option, cloud hosting might be the way to go.

Read Next: Investment on Data Centers to rise in the next 3 to 5 years – 2021 Data Center Industry Survey

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