Data Center Requirements for Digital Transformation

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DC BLOX Connectivity Article 3 of a 3 Part Series

Strategic Data Center Partnerships Accelerate Digital Transformation

A strategic data center partnership is one of the smartest relationships a business can form in developing their digital transformation strategy. It’s true for any company looking to overcome the constraints of their legacy infrastructure to accelerate their digital business goals. Secure and reliable power and space are fundamental, but connectivity enables the agility necessary to grow.

In addition, more companies are realizing the challenges of capitalizing and resourcing their own internal data center operations. Outsourcing to a data center partner allows businesses to focus their resources on core business imperatives.

IT infrastructure is becoming increasingly distributed and connectivity across the ecosystem of partners, providers and platforms requires flexibility, speed and capacity. A company-owned data center with limited connectivity partner options may not be able to get you there. The public cloud provides an enterprise with many advantages, but connectivity across the full ecosystem can still be costly and complex.

Your plans should include a reliable colocation data center with rich network connectivity at its core providing a firm foundation for your digital infrastructure.

Data Center Requirements for Your Digital Transformation Strategy

In choosing a strong data center partner to meet your digital business goals, you should consider the following criteria.

Reliability

A robust data center provider supports Uptime Institute’s Tier 3 standards which ensures concurrent maintainability. That means that the data center has two power distribution paths to customers’ equipment, and one path can be taken off-line without impacting operations. Thus, there are dual UPS feeds to every cabinet and N+1 UPS systems, power generators and cooling systems ensuring sustained, reliable operations in the event of a utility power failure.

A data center provider can be a key partner to support your disaster recovery and business continuity objectives. All DC BLOX data centers are connected by a private network, which means that computing infrastructure can be placed in two data center facilities for geo-redundancy. DC BLOX data centers are located far enough away from each other (generally 100-200 miles) to be on different power grids, but close enough to be drivable to access equipment when needed. In a disaster recovery configuration, the unlikely failure of one site can result in a fail-over to infrastructure in the secondary site. You can use two DC BLOX data centers as your company’s primary and secondary sites, or just a single location as a disaster recovery site to your own primary facility.

Furthermore, DC BLOX’s low-latency private optical network enables active/active synchronization across data centers for a continuous availability solution. With a distance of about 100 miles between locations and a latency guarantee of less than five milliseconds across the DC BLOX network, a VLAN can be stretched across sites for a true layer-2 adjacency solution.

Security & Privacy

Physical security is the first step. A secure data center will provide overlapping obstacles to intrusion:

  • 24x7x365 manned security desk
  • Vehicle gate and perimeter fencing
  • Layered security between the perimeter to each cabinet
  • CCTV at the perimeter, ingress/egress, office, data hall, and cabinets

DC BLOX’s Huntsville and Birmingham data centers also support enhanced security built to CUI (Controlled Unclassified Information) standards. CUI is defined by the U.S. federal government as unclassified information relating to the interests of the government or outside entities it believes should be protected.

Additionally, securing data can simply mean geographic redundancy. A company’s data is its lifeblood. IT has the responsibility to store and protect that data and to do so economically. DC BLOX Cloud Storage is a great solution for backing up data from within any one of its data centers or from a business’s premises. Getting data off-site protects the company’s information in the event of a major disaster at its primary site. DC BLOX also provides replication across data centers for even greater geographic diversity.

Companies need their applications to perform at peak efficiency and low latency.

Application Performance – Edge Capabilities

DC BLOX’s data centers enable businesses to bring in specialized hardware and software configurations not available with standard cloud platforms to accelerate application performance.

With its presence in markets such as Chattanooga, TN, Huntsville, AL and Birmingham AL, and a private network with low latency connectivity to Internet Exchanges and Cloud Providers, DC BLOX has truly extended the edge. Edge Computing means enabling applications that require local processing close to end users, and DC BLOX is well positioned to serve customers in these key cities.

Compliance

All DC BLOX data centers are SOC 2 Type 2 certified. SOC (Service Organization Controls) 2 is a reporting option for entities such as data centers, focused on internal controls that are relevant to security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. SOC 2 compliance attests that DC BLOX has put in place the necessary internal controls to prove to its clients that their data is being handled securely and by industry standards. Type 2 reporting has confirmed evidence of compliance over time showing that DC BLOX consistently meets its goals.

Connectivity

Having access to reliable, secure colocation space and power for your business’s computing infrastructure is important, but achieving your digital business goals requires an enhanced level of connectivity. DC BLOX is a carrier-neutral provider welcoming all carriers to provide services from its connected and distributed data centers.

Carriers in DC BLOX data centers include CenturyLink, Comcast, AT&T, Zayo, Cogent, EPB and TeliaSonera – and more. Since there may be different carriers in each of DC BLOX’s data centers, the company offers a unique Virtual Cross Connect product.

A Virtual Cross Connect enables a connection from a customer’s cabinet in one DC BLOX data center to connect over DC BLOX’s private optical network, to a carrier in any other DC BLOX data center. The real value, however, is that the Virtual Cross Connect is the same price as a standard cross connect within a data center.

DC BLOX offers MEF-compliant Ethernet services including EVPLs and E-LANs. This means that our private network can support private connectivity to any infrastructure across its footprint, and can also provide low latency connectivity from every DC BLOX data center to the Southeast Internet Exchange at 56 Marietta St. where cross-connects are available to hundreds of providers ensuring truly global connectivity.

DC BLOX’s private data center network is resilient and protected, guaranteed with a 100% availability SLA and maximum latency commitments.

The rapid migration to cloud computing and the need to deploy hybrid cloud configurations has driven DC BLOX to enable private, secure connections with its partner Megaport, from each of its data centers to all major cloud and SaaS providers.

DC BLOX is equipped for high-bandwidth applications. Each data center provides a minimum of 100Gbps connectivity with a capacity of up to 8.8Tbps on some routes.

Today’s digital business requires frequent and sometimes rapid network additions or changes to partners, providers and platforms. Having built a software-defined network fabric, DC BLOX is able to provision customer connections in minutes, rather than days or weeks.

A major problem with the rapid adoption of new technologies and the growing dispersion of platforms and partners is finding the skills necessary to drive your company’s initiatives.

Partnering with a company like DC BLOX means that, in addition to world-class facilities, you are getting access to experts that will design and implement connectivity services according to your complex business requirements. Access to these highly-skilled resources and capabilities relieves pressure on the enterprise and frees up already time-strapped staff.

Do You Have a Data Center Partner for Your Digital Transformation?

DC BLOX is pushing the edge into smaller growing cities that have not had local tier 3 rated data centers with rich connectivity available to them previously. It’s safe to say that many businesses in those cities have not had the infrastructure needed to execute on their digital business goals.

Digital transformation requires a re-imagination of your business to address growing competitive opportunities and increasing customer expectations. You’ll need partners to walk with you on your digital journey and DC BLOX is ready to help!

To find out more about how DC BLOX can assist your enterprise achieve its digital transformation initiatives, contact us. We’d love to hear from you.

Would you like to catch up on earlier articles in this 3 Part Connectivity Series?
Article 1: Digital Transformation and the Challenge of Data Center Connectivity
Article 2: The Cloud vs. Colocation for Connecting Digital Infrastructure

About DC BLOX
DC BLOX is a multi-tenant data center partner offering the infrastructure and connectivity essential to power today’s digital business. DC BLOX’s, software defined network services enable access to a wealth of providers, partners and platforms to businesses across the Southeast. DC BLOX data center locations are in Atlanta, GA, Chattanooga, TN, and Huntsville, AL. Its newest location is under construction in Birmingham, AL.
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