Enterprises with heavy online traffic, heavy revenue generation, content-rich websites and requirements that include a significant amount of server space may find shared hosting cannot provide the power and resources they need. Before taking the prominent plunge from a shared server to a dedicated server, or even to a managed dedicated server, a lineup of considerations is on the agenda.
Going With In-house Management
A managed dedicated server hands over all the technical and support issues to the provider, but handing over the issues also means handing over full control. Keeping management in-house keeps control with the company, but it also requires a savvy IT team that can dedicate the required amount of time, energy and knowledge to the maintenance, troubleshooting and upgrades and monitoring of the server.
Monitoring the server can be a full-time job requiring 24/7 attention,ITXDesign.com points out. Setup costs also run higher with a leased server managed in-house versus managed server, as they necessitate a systems engineer to help with server configuration, testing and building.
Hiring two companies for the Internet connection is also on the agenda. One main company handles the daily connection and one backup company kicks in if the main connection fails. Another costly requirement is adequate power to run the server, in the form of an uninterrupted power supply (UPS).
Heading Off the In-house Headaches
If in-house management of a leased server sounds like a host of headaches waiting to happen, that's because it can be. Enterprises that opt to manage their servers are willing to suffer through the headaches due to their need to have complete control of every aspect of their server.
Avoiding the headaches, however, is possible for companies willing to let others handle them. The Web Hosting Advice website stresses that opting for a managed dedicated server means letting someone else take care of the daily duties as well as the expenses and infrastructure issues that would be otherwise left to the in-house team.
While setup and configuration costs may run high for an independent enterprise, service providers already have the necessary resources in place. They take care of the configuration, data center, Internet connections, security solutions, and the high amounts of power needed just to keep the server running.
Infrastructure maintenance is another headache companies can avoid with a managed server, as the provider again already has a scalable, secure, and redundant data center. If any of the hardware fails or becomes obsolete, a high-quality service agreement will replace and upgrade as part of the agreement.
Full-time, knowledgeable staffing for the server can be an easy task for many service providers since the staff is in place, familiar with the provider's equipment and dedicated solely to ensuring networks stay up and running. This can be a tough task for companies that have limited IT staff or any company that would rather its IT staff focus on growing the company instead of maintaining its server.
In-house management of a dedicated server does provide full control, but it can potentially lead to loss of control, as well as business. Unless an enterprise is willing to sacrifice the time, money and staff needed to man its dedicated server at its optimum level, it can make sense to relinquish that control.
Action Item: Before taking the plunge from a shared server to a dedicated server or managed dedicated server, carefully consider the time, money and staff needed to man your servers at optimum level.