Why Hivelocity is the Best Colocation Option in Tampa

Last Updated on: September 16, 2013

Hivelocity was founded in 2001 and we have maintained our headquarters in Tampa Bay for over a decade. In the early years as our company grew we toured each data center in the area looking for the right fit to facilitate our swelling needs. You see when we founded the company our need for space and resources was relatively small. As we found success we found ourselves growing at such a rate and adding servers at such a pace we quickly outgrew the facility we started in and needed a good home, a bigger home for the racks and racks of servers we were adding each month. Hivelocity was started by a handful of 20 somethings and back then capital was pretty limited and building out our own data center was just not an option. The only option we had to affordably manage our growth was to colocate in someone else’s Tampa data center.

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The search begins and we embark upon our parade of data center tours. We needed a reasonably priced Tampa data center that provided a quality network and high reliability. We started with the reasonably priced data centers and quickly realized why they were so reasonably priced…they were cheap. The lower end Tampa data centers were warm if not hot inside, had poor networks and it was obvious they did not perform best practice in their day to day facility management. It seemed the term “preventive maintenance” was a foreign phrase but “cutting corners” was well within their vernacular. Our quest endured and we moved on to the more expensive Tampa colocation options hoping for better results. While we found the expensive Tampa data centers to be cooler (temperature) and prettier, their networks were lousy. As it turns out, if the data center is also a transit provider, you are forced to take their single-homed network and pay out the nose for bandwidth. Sure the racks were priced well enough but what good is fairly priced rack space if the cost for bandwidth is $35 per Mbps of single-homed transit? We have customers all over the world and we need a diverse network that will give great speeds everywhere, not just here in Tampa. Our last hopes of finding a good colocation option hinged on facilities located in downtown Tampa. As we drove into downtown our hopes slowly diminished as we noticed a huge body of water to our right. As we went up the elevators and walked around the different downtown Tampa data centers we noticed this same body of water from the window views of the executive offices. Yes the Bay is beautiful but so close to the data centers, not so much. We learned that all of downtown Tampa’s power is subterranean and in the event of a storm the local power company would shut down power to all of downtown prior to the water surge in order to avoid damaging the underground transformers with saltwater on live equipment. Did you know that high-rises have strict limitations on how much diesel fuel can be stored within each building? How in the world do they refill those tanks all the way up there when downtown is flooded anyhow?

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Our options were looking dim and we truly felt like Goldilocks. The Tampa data centers were either too cheap (unreliable), too expensive (but why?), had lousy networks, or were located in flood prone areas. We needed a data center in Tampa that was just right.

Fast-forward to 2010. We have plenty of capital. Hivelocity begins the build out of it’s new data center 18 miles inland and outside any flood-zone. We put on a new roof rated for 135 Mph winds. We spend months digging trenches and install tons of fiber-optics to our new Tampa data center via diverse entry points. We reach out to the best transit providers in Tampa Bay and turn up Level 3, Time Warner Telecom, Global Crossing, Inteliquent and Cogent bandwidth. We light up each of these providers on multiple 10Gbps fiber pipes then route them via BGP4 and Noction IRP providing our customers with the absolute fastest path every time. We bring in a 3000 gallon external diesel tank to add to the existing 750 gallon belly tank to give us close to a week of generator run time. We want our data center cold and we want it cold even if we have a failure so we add 200+ tons of N+2 computer room air conditioning. Now we have something! We set up contracts with different vendors who specialize in servicing UPS, Batteries, Generators, Air Conditioners, Power Distribution Units and Fire Suppression Systems and we tell them to show up every 3 months and perform preventive maintenance so everyone can rest easy at night. We then say, let’s give Tampa what they have needed for so long at a great price.

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Hivelocity has put the infrastructure and best practices in place to provide the absolute best Tampa colocation option. Hivelocity, however, has always been a company that made its name by providing over-the-top customer service and support. That is afterall how we found so much success without our own data center up until now. We asked ourselves, what more can we do for our colocation customers besides providing the best infrastructure,price and network in town? Because we maintain thousands and thousands of our own servers leased out to customers all over the world and provide those customers 24/7/365 technical support and managed services, we clearly have the ability to extend that expertise to our colocated customers. Our Impressive Support Team has been helping customers running VOIP, Game Servers, Data Base Servers, Hosting Servers, cPanel Servers, Plesk Servers, Hsphere Servers, Linux Servers, Windows Servers, SQL Servers, File Sharing Servers, Streaming Media Servers for over 10 years. Instead of telling our colocation customers to come down and fix it themselves like every other Tampa data center would, why dont we offer to help them and save them a trip? We are the experts after-all. We buy hundreds of thousands of dollars of equipment from Dell and Supermicro every month and have plenty of spare parts in our stock room for failure replacements. If a colocation customer is in a pinch and has a hardware failure why dont we offer to replace a part for them and sell it to them at cost, instead of telling them tough luck like every other Tampa data center would do? Now, we really have something special!

Hivelocity is without a doubt, the best option for anyone looking to colocate in a Tampa or for that matter a Florida data center. Our many years of experience have allowed us to see what has been missing at Tampa data centers. We have seen what the rest of the Tampa data centers have done wrong and we have seen what they have done right. We have taken that knowledge and built out the best Florida data center around and coupled it with the best customer service and technical support around.

We would love for you to come to our data center and let us show you all of this in person. There is a reason Hivelocity was the ONLY data center named to Tampa Bay Business Journal’s Fastest 50 Growing Companies list this year. Open a live chat or give us a call and schedule a tour today. The Hivelocity Experience is waiting for you.

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