Modern businesses, especially SMBs, are increasingly following an “on-demand” business model. This means both that they are aiming to provide their own products and services exactly when the customer needs them and that they are expecting other companies to do the same for them. Managed IT hosting fits very well into this business model as it allows companies to acquire the resources they need when they need them and for however long they need them, without the need for hefty, upfront, capital expenditure.
Here is what you need to know to understand managed IT hosting in Sacramento
→ Managed IT hosting versus the cloud
“The cloud” is basically shorthand for a means of using technology to pool resources so that they can be shared effectively between different users. There are two main ways to implement cloud technology. These are public clouds and private clouds.
Public clouds are always run by managed IT hosting companies and they are always shared between unrelated customers (known as tenants). That is literally the definition of a public cloud.
Private clouds are only ever used by one customer and they may or may not be run by managed IT hosting companies. Some companies may run their own private clouds on their own premises and manage everything themselves.
Managed IT hosting is when a company rents IT infrastructure from a third-party vendor, the managed IT hosting company, and uses it as it wishes.
→ Managed IT hosting can serve all kinds of purposes
Some companies may use managed IT hosting because they don’t want the hassle and expense of running their own infrastructure, while others may use it to extend their own infrastructure. Some companies may use it to create their own private clouds, while others may use it because they’re stuck with legacy applications that aren’t really suitable for running in the cloud and they need a way to keep them going until they can develop replacements.
→ Managed IT hosting can (usually) be as flexible as the customer’s needs
Obviously, this will depend on your provider, but if you go for a reputable managed IT hosting company then you will probably have the option to choose from a wide range of service packages. These will typically start with a basic “infrastructure only” package, so, for example, servers, storage media, and network connections, and then move on upwards to include useful “add on” services such as application management.
→ Choosing a good managed IT hosting company
You’re managed IT hosting company is highly likely to become one of your key business partners and so it pays to choose them with care. The selection process is likely to be a combination of “soft” factors, such as the company’s reputation for customer service, and “hard” factors such as the features it can support. Here are some points you should check.
→ Their security standards
If you have to follow a compliance program then it can be useful to check, specifically, if they can support it. Even if you don’t, you need to be reassured that any managed IT hosting company is operating to the very highest levels of security. For obvious reasons, a managed IT hosting company is very unlikely to divulge the exact details of their security processes, but they should be able to give you clear indicators of its quality such as giving some details of the technology behind it (e.g. the firewall they use) and any certifications they have.
→ Full root access to servers
On a similar note, if you’re essentially renting a server from a managed IT hosting company and that server is for your sole use, then you should have full control over it. That means full root SSH / RDP access.
→ A decent user interface on the control panel
This may sound like a minor point, but actually, it can make a huge difference to your overall experience. Even with managed IT hosting, there are usually some tasks you need to perform yourself and you want to be able to perform them with maximum speed and minimum hassle.
→ Solid and effective technical support
What you want is an actual, contractually-enforceable SLA for resolving technical issues, not “guidelines” or “best-effort indications” or anything else of that nature. Basically, you want to be sure that a company that runs a 247365/6 helpdesk actually has proper technicians accessible during that time (on-call is fine as long as they have to respond quickly), not how long it’s going to take for you to be assigned a ticket.
→ Guaranteed uptime
No company can reasonably guarantee 100% uptime but they should be able to go pretty close, especially if they are using high-performance hardware and support decent network speeds.
Sign up today for free & stay current with local IT news.X