A web hosting data center is a facility that must effectively run many distinct systems and bring them together to form a cohesive overall infrastructure. Each of these systems, from networking hardware to web servers, must communicate efficiently and quickly with the other devices in the network and with the rest of the Internet. Of course, these devices also have their own unique requirements when it comes to the environment they operate within and how this environment is regulated with redundant power supplies and precise temperature control.
The following article written exclusively by JaguarPC is designed to help you understand the most important features of a web hosting data center, and how your chosen facility impacts the performance of your web hosting service. You will learn about the utilities of the best web hosting facilities, the equipment you should expect to be inside the building, and how a web hosting back-end and front-end come together to make your hosting service more reliable and responsive.
The utilities that support your web hosting services
A hosting data center is full of electronic equipment, and all of these devices require power to run. Power failure is a leading cause of server downtime, and if your hosting provider does not provide adequate power, it is likely that your website will become unavailable for prolonged periods of time. Always check that your hosting provider’s facility combines multiple power supplies, including standard underground power feeds and reserve sources of electricity. A good data center has large-scale generators on-site, with diesel reserve tanks and provisions for the emergency supply of extra fuel.
Once suitable power sources are in place and the equipment within a web hosting service facility is up and running, this necessitates the second-most crucial service within a data center – cooling. With potentially thousands of dedicated servers and core networking equipment, web hosting data centers generate an incredible amount of heat, and hardware must be cooled in order to operate efficiently.
To be sure that your hardware will remain cool and stable, check for multiple air conditioning units and a source of coolant that can be used on a daily basis. In addition, for those occasions when the water supply to a facility is interrupted, the best web hosting providers offer a reserve water tank, keeping as much as 30,000 gallons of cool water on-site.
If the network data center you choose has multiple backbone connections to the Internet, an uninterruptable source of power, and suitably large-scale cooling, you can be sure that the hardware within the facility has the potential to perform well. However, turning this potential into a reality depends on intelligent network design and solid, reliable equipment at work inside the data center.
Back-end equipment sets the foundation for your web hosting services
The masses of equipment within a web hosting facility can be divided into two sections: the back-end network equipment and the web hosting front-end. A back-end is the underlying foundation of any web hosting service, and includes routers that connect to the Internet, cabling, and other devices to provide a solid, high-speed connection to network carriers. Without a high-quality back-end, it is impossible to offer optimum service on the customer-facing front-end.
First, it is useful to be aware of the potential speed defined by the back-end that your web hosting provider has put in place. The latest innovations in technology allow for GigE back-end equipment, also known as Gigabit Ethernet, where data can flow at a one-gigabit-per-second transfer rate. As websites continue to offer richer content with larger file sizes, including streaming video, it is vital that a back-end can support multiple users serving this kind of content at the same time.
Although speed is an important factor when choosing a web hosting provider and hosting data center, you should always balance network speed against performance and network uptime. Some web hosting companies aim to attract shared hosting, VPS hosting, and dedicated server hosting customers with high-speed networks, but cannot provide redundant equipment at similar speeds. This means that, should primary network equipment fail, your web hosting service will degrade to a slower transfer rate, using slower devices.
As you explore possible web hosting data center facilities, be sure to ask your potential hosting provider how redundant the core networking equipment will protect you against poor website performance or unplanned downtime.
Front-end hosting data center equipment delivers the best possible service
With the backbone of a web hosting network in place, a web hosting provider needs to implement front-end devices that take full advantage of back-end capabilities. It is of no use to offer sub-standard server hardware on a high-speed network, and the best web hosting providers invest in state-of-the-art hardware throughout the entire facility.
Whether you opt for shared web hosting, VPS web hosting, or a dedicated server solution, a good way to gauge front-end performance is to look for well-known brands with a reputation for quality hardware. If a hosting company utilizes equipment from market leaders such as Cisco, Dell, or HP, it is safe to assume that your website will perform consistently and be capable of handling even the most complex content types.
However, there is one final factor that can have a significant impact on the performance of your web hosting service.
Reliable web hosting services depend on the human touch
A good web hosting data center brings together the best technology across environmental control, the network back-end, and the network front-end. But server technology is hardly plug-and-play, and above all, the best network infrastructures are designed, installed, and monitored by web hosting experts.
Always choose a recognized web hosting provider with years of hands-on experience in offering a range of different web hosting services. The more experienced your hosting provider is, the more confident you can be that your hosting solution will be launched on an intelligent network designed with maximum redundancy and no single points of failure.
The people on-site at a hosting data center will also define your service for years to come, acting as remote hands and helping you with configuration and troubleshooting. Hosting companies that offer managed VPS hosting and managed dedicated server hosting are always available to work with your server, proactively monitor for errors, and keep your website online at all times.
Host your web presence in JaguarPC’s state-of-the-art hosting data center
With network data centers in six locations around the world, JaguarPC has the experience and expertise it takes to run an efficient facility that is online, all the time.
JaguarPC currently offers a diverse service range, including shared web hosting plans, VPS hosting services, and dedicated servers, with 100% network uptime guaranteed as standard. Our 100% uptime guarantee is testament to our robust and reliable network infrastructure, which blends a high-speed GigE back-end with redundant network design.
At JaguarPC, we also routinely assess and update our network facilities, ensuring that your web hosting service will always be up-to-date with the very latest developments in web hosting technology.