InTechnology disputes Gartner datacentre advice


InTechnology disputes Gartner datacentre advice

Alex Scroxton

Hosted services provider InTechnology has disputed claims made by Gartner last year that it is cheaper for end-users to build their own datacentres rather than outsource them.

Speaking last November at the Gartner Datacentre and IT Operations Summit 2011, Gartner research vice president Rakesh Kumar said that he was finding a net increase in new datacentre projects as people came under pressure to cut costs.

"People are finding the capital to build 30,000 square foot plus datacentres," said Kumar, in a somewhat surprising revelation given that a European datacentre can cost around £25m to construct.

Kumar claimed that end-users who paid a hosting company over four years could have paid for a new datacentre instead, and said the cost of renting rackspace at a hosted facility was doubling every two years. Gartner recommended sweating datacentre assets instead of taking the channel option.

But InTechnology CTO Bryn Sage accused Gartner of failing to think beyond the initial costs of datacentre acquisition.

"In principle, if you're just talking about the costs of bricks and mortar, building your own datacentre can be a cheaper option," he said. "However, there are some key criteria that must be qualified before committing to going it alone."

Sage continued: "It's imperative to establish and understand the full business impact caused by downtime of business critical applications. [And] upgrades, maintenance, servicing and staffing all require both time and investment."

InTechnology said that during the average 15 to 25 year lifespan of a datacentre, Moore's Law dictated that technology will inevitably improve by leaps and bounds, and businesses would need to consider whether they are, or will be, equipped to manage these changes.

This suggestion was backed up by fellow datacentre provider Sentrum, which towards the end of 2011 released research that claimed the majority of UK business planning a datacentre strategy found their plans were becoming out of date after just three years.

This led many to over-provision their facilities, with the result that businesses were throwing hundreds of thousands of pounds of IT budget out of the window.

Sentrum CDO Franek Sodzawiczny said: "Ensuring a scalable solution and adding long term value should be high on the datacentre operator's business agenda.

"I'm not shocked to learn that there are a number of highly over-specified datacentres out there, but I believe that hearing about the associated costs will send a shiver down some spines," he added.

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