A wall of colorful Legos with a hand trying to place the final piece that does not fit

The benefits of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) are undeniable, but the key to fully receiving these benefits is choosing a solution customized to fit your unique needs. Many mistakenly believe IaaS is a commodity that just about any provider can implement with success, but the truth is, having a provider that offers customization options makes all the difference.

In this blog, we will share several ways Infrastructure as a Service can be customized to best suit your business needs and allow you to enjoy the full power of IaaS.

The word "SOLUTION" surrounded by icon concepts that represent solutions including puzzle pieces and Clouds for custom Infrastructure as a Service

Six Key Ways IaaS Can Be Customized for Your Business

Customized Infrastructure as a Service allows you to optimize the power of cloud computing to perfectly work with your business. Look for a provider that is able to offer these six IaaS customization options:

1. Private and Dedicated Resources. If you’re looking for increased security and improved performance, dedicated resources are a great option for your business. Choose a provider that will allow you to have your own dedicated servers, plus private storage and LUN’s.

2. Management. Which level of control do you need and what do you want your provider to take responsibility for? Consider the following areas of management you may want access to:

  • Operating Systems
  • Workloads
  • Disaster Recovery as a Service
  • Backups
  • Intrusion detection and prevention
  • Anti-virus
  • Software licensing
  • DDoS mitigation
  • Vulnerability scanning
  • Virtual and dedicated firewalls

3. Compliance. From HIPAA and PCI to SOX and FISC, consider what industry standards your business must comply with. For instance, is it required that certain pieces of infrastructure be dedicated to you? Be sure to choose a provider that is fully compliant with any standards that you—and they—need to follow.

4. Speeds and Feeds. Do you need certain speeds or feeds for infrastructure components that are not available in traditional public cloud environments? This could include disk speed, amount of memory, speeds for network elements, and more.

5. Connectivity. Do you need connectivity to certain networks or providers such as Megaport, or do you need fiber optics? Make sure your provider can offer the connectivity you need.

6. Geodiversity. Do you need geo-diverse production and backup/recovery sites? Choose a provider with ample distance between the two so that their secondary site is viable in the event of a widespread disaster.

Coworkers discussing plans in an office to customize a solution

Do You Need Standard or Custom Infrastructure as a Service?

Customization options are the key to harnessing the full power of cloud computing through Infrastructure as a Service, and the best IaaS providers will be able to customize options to fit your specific needs. On the other hand, your business may be seeking a standard private option where little to no customization is needed.

At LightBound, we’re able and ready to serve your business either way. We offer several options for customization as well as several standard, private options. This way, IaaS adoption is made easy for your business and you can have peace of mind knowing that you won’t be stuck without options in the future as your needs change.

Are you unsure of whether you need IaaS customization? Or do you know what you need and want to learn more about LightBound as a provider? LightBound will work with your business to help you discover your needs and recommend a personalized plan for your use case. We’re happy to help answer any questions you have, so don’t hesitate to contact us today!

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Illustration for Cloud computing Infrastructure as a Service connected to the world wide web

Have you considered connectivity when choosing an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) provider? What many don’t realize is that not all IaaS providers offer the same standard of connectivity, and it can make or break the success of your Cloud service.

In this blog, we explain why connectivity is essential for IaaS and what new developments to know about the future of connectivity.

Why Connectivity is Key to Infrastructure as a Service

With Infrastructure as a Service, a third-party provider delivers use of data center infrastructure to you via the Internet. Thus, poor quality network connectivity means that IaaS simply won’t function and you can expect:

  • Slow or halted operations
  • Increased downtime
  • Frustrated clients that depend on you for success
  • Lost revenue

If you want to find an IaaS provider with connectivity you can depend on, there are three main qualities to consider, all impacting IaaS for better or worse:

1. Speed. No one wants a slow connection, especially when it comes to Cloud hosting. To ensure your business’s productivity and revenue don’t take a hit, be sure that your provider offers lighting fast speed with a large amount of scalable bandwidth available. You may also want a provider that offers the option of dark and lit fiber-optic connections for faster speeds and lower latency.

2. Redundancy. If you want to minimize downtime and lost revenue for your business, redundancy is key. Your provider should be able to automatically and seamlessly route your packets to one of many other local and international carriers if a connection is lost to achieve 24/7/365 uptime.

3. Sourcing. Choose a carrier-neutral provider that handles both network services and IaaS. Not all providers handle both, especially many larger national providers who are unable to control and manage the breadth of service. Single-source providers are beneficial because they can diagnose and fix issues holistically and manage traffic to and from all carriers. Plus, they have direct relationships with the carriers that you’ll need in the long-term to make sure data is captured securely and error-free.

Reliable, high-performing Internet access is non-negotiable because IaaS depends on quality connectivity. Only choose a provider that can ensure your mission-critical business functions stay connected.

Network connection technology in the city with 5g internet networking sign

What to Know About the Future of Connectivity and IaaS

How are technologies changing connectivity? Megaport and 5G are playing a huge role in the future of Infrastructure as a Service.

Megaport as the Next Wave of Connectivity for the Cloud

Want a simple way to achieve fast, easy connectivity? Megaport is the next wave of connectivity for Cloud and may be the solution you’ve been looking for. It’s described as “the easiest way to connect to the services that power your business.”

Megaport can:

  • Speed up your setup and simplify the process of building and deploying connections to the services your business runs on
  • Enable quick and easy network creation instead of typical siloed and complex configuration tasks
  • Connect you to cloud services, managed services, and between data centers almost instantly
  • Move your workloads in real time
  • Reach the cloud from wherever you are and transport your data between global locations easily
  • Scale your bandwidth up and down at any time, matching your connection speed with your workloads

5G as the Enabler of the Future

As described by TechRadar, “5G networks are the next generation of mobile internet connectivity, offering faster speeds and more reliable connections on smartphones and other devices than ever before.”

By 2020, 5G networks are expected to launch across the world, not to replace 4G and 3G networks, but work alongside them—at least at first. 5G is expected to contribute to the development of advanced technologies and encourage the growth of Internet of Things (IoT) with the improved connectivity it offers.

Network of physical devices with network connectivity as global network and IoT (Internet of Things) concept

Want an IaaS Provider with Connectivity You Can Count On?

Excellent connectivity is a non-negotiable for Infrastructure as a Service in cloud computing, making it equally important to choose a provider that can offer the speed, redundancy, and single-source service you can trust for peace of mind. At LightBound, we offer both network and IaaS, plus top-notch service delivery and support for the best in connectivity.

Want to learn more about the connectivity needed for IaaS success? Contact LightBound today! We’d love to answer any questions you have.

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Data center colocation services vector illustration of server rack equipment

Choosing colocation services for your business means that you’re leasing data center space, power, and cooling from a provider that owns and manages a data center facility for you. The popularity of colocation has grown alongside Cloud services, offering major benefits when compared with on-premises solutions.

In this blog, we focus on colocation’s financial benefits, covering five key ways it boosts your bottom line.

5 Financial Benefits of Colocation Services

1. Cut High Capital Expenditure

Building and implementing your own data center facility comes with a massive price tag up front, including having to create the proper environment and redundancies to store your servers. Colocation allows you to reduce capital expenditure because you only have to invest in hardware and software, not the storage environment itself.

This means you can enjoy a spacious, high-quality colocation data center at a price you can afford not only now, but also as your business grows and changes in the future. Colocation’s capital expenditure savings are ideal for businesses that don’t want the permanent investment of an on-site data center or can’t currently afford to build one that will meet their needs well.

2. Lower Operating Costs

On top of an already costly initial investment in having your own data center on-premises, you’ll also pay enormous amounts to keep your data center environment running smoothly and up-to-date. No matter how much space and energy you actually need at a given time, you may often find yourself paying more than necessary to cover management and maintenance.

With colocation services, you can reduce unnecessary operating costs because you only pay for what you need when you need it. This efficiency means you can expect a consistent, predictable cost without significant miscellaneous expenses.

Additionally, your provider’s team of experts are handling the huge colocation data center environment for you, meaning you don’t need to invest as much in personnel as you would if you owned the data center. This includes maintaining the space, power, bandwidth, IP address, and cooling systems necessary. Colocation hosting gives you greater bandwidth with a lower cost so you can enjoy the features of a large IT shop without the massive price tag.

Businessmen on tablet touch screen reviewing a diagram or chart of financial reports

3. Reduce Risk

Did you know that colocation is more secure than hosting your own server? Colocation offers a higher level of security and maximizes your uptime thanks to the following features when you choose a provider like LightBound:

  • Powerful generators and backup power to keep your servers safe during an outage
  • Servers stored in ideal temperatures with redundant power, cooling, and fire suppression
  • 24/7/365 monitoring and assistance
  • Advanced physical security including biometric access, cameras, individual cage locks, and substantial access logs
  • Compliance with ever-evolving industry regulations

When your infrastructure is protected and monitored by a trusted data center services provider’s environment, you can rest easy knowing your business operations will run smoothly and get quickly back on track when something goes wrong.  

By avoiding the costs of downtime and remediation, your bottom line will thank you. Plus, you don’t have to pay to keep up with expensive security technology, monitoring, and certifications.

4. Improve Customer Loyalty

Housing your infrastructure with the right colocation provider means your customers can trust that you are keeping their data safe. Reduced downtime and smoother business operations will mean less frustration for your customers and increased brand loyalty. When your business runs well, it fosters happy customers that have faith in your business.

5. Scale Easily

When you store your server equipment in your own server racks, there’s no easy or cost-effective way to move, grow, or shrink the space you store your infrastructure. With colocation services, you own your server hardware and can upgrade anytime rather than being stuck with the initial facility plan in your own data center. Rather than having to completely rebuild your own data center, your provider will provide you space to easily scale your infrastructure up or down on-demand.

Plus, if your office building moves locations, you won’t have to worry about transporting your infrastructure with it—it can stay put at your colocation site. This flexibility and scalability can be a wise investment in your bottom line, especially if your company is fast-changing, a startup, or requires a fast time to market.

Landscape view of very large data center data storage array for colocation services

Choosing the Right Colocation Provider

As much as 4-5 times less expensive than insourcing, colocation offers many benefits to your bottom line. If you think colocation is right for your business, then it’s time to get serious about choosing the right colocation provider.

This is a crucial step to ensure colocation success because no two providers are the same when it comes to the value of their offerings and service delivery. Look for a provider like LightBound who will be a partner to your business, providing continued personal attention,  24/7/365 support, top-notch security, and custom solutions.

Want to learn more about colocation services? We’d love to hear from you! Contact LightBound today and our experts will help answer all your questions and share how colocation hosting can benefit your business.

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Businesses continue to shift away from costly and time-consuming, on-premises solutions in favor of colocation services. By choosing colocation, a business is able to rent the physical space, power, redundancies, and cooling needed to house their own hardware from a provider, all while continuing ownership and management of their equipment.

While colocation isn’t considered “Cloud”, it’s a solution that still offers huge advantages to the right business in terms of time, money, and physical space savings. Whether you’re currently colocating or looking to make the switch, we’ve gathered four key colocation trends for you to consider when creating your own IT strategy.

1. Network Agility Will Be Pushed to Keep Up

Growth demands on networks are high and this pressure will only continue thanks to “the advent of 5G, increasing cloud maturity, and the explosion in numbers of IoT devices,” explains Hosting Journalist. While network agility is more important than ever, it’s equally as important to choose a colocation hosting provider with a network that can keep up with the pace of demand.

Illustration of running people with speed increasing from pixels as a concept for trends, changes, and digital transformation

2. Colocation Will Be Core to Hybrid Cloud

Hybrid Cloud solutions are on the rise, explains Data Center Knowledge, which isn’t surprising considering that Hybrid Cloud solutions offer increased flexibility and efficiency for businesses by integrating the use of private cloud and public cloud solutions. Colocation services will rise in use alongside Hybrid Cloud as businesses seek a cost-effective solution to house their private cloud solutions.

3. Evaluating Providers Will Go Beyond Cost Calculations

It’s already widely recognized that colocation services offer huge cost savings. Now, Forbes explains that businesses will look beyond that established fact when choosing a provider to evaluate how a provider will help them improve efficiency and capacity. It will become increasingly important to ask, “Which provider will give me an edge as a business?”, and “Which provider will work personally with me to create a custom strategy for success?”

Server control panel hosting software vector illustration for colocation services

4. Advanced Security Will Be Non-Negotiable

With today’s ever-increasing cybersecurity threats, security and compliance are on everyone’s minds. Choosing the right colocation services provider will be essential to ensuring you have top-notch security that can stand up to the threats. Businesses will look for a provider’s ability to offer advanced security features including virtual security, redundancy, compliance with industry standards, and physical security measures such as registration and biometric access.

Interested in colocation services?

Do you want a colocation hosting provider you can trust, that will grow with you as a true partner to your business? LightBound’s colocation services can help make your life simpler and less stressful, offering Choice Network, custom Hybrid Cloud solutions, compliance and security you can count on, and a true interest in the success of your business.

We’ll sit down with you one-on-one to ensure a successful enterprise strategy and you can rest assured knowing we’ll be there for you whenever you call. Contact LightBound today to get your questions answered and learn from our experts what a colocation site can offer your business.

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Design of a cloud with digital features to illustrate cloud computing technology, data storage, or data transfer to the cloud

Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) is a champion among disaster recovery solutions for protecting your business’s data and applications. But how exactly does this service work? With terms like RPO, hypervisor, and more, it’s easy to get lost in the technical details or even sidetracked by myths about DRaaS.

In this blog, we share what LightBound’s DRaaS is, the technology behind it, and a basic breakdown of what DRaaS looks like in action. This will help you gain a clear understanding of how this business continuity and disaster recovery (BC/DR) service keeps your data safe.

What is DRaaS?

Every second it takes for your business to recover from data loss or downtime matters to your bottom line. That’s why it’s key to be able to achieve a quick and easy recovery from a crisis, which is exactly what Disaster Recovery as a Service is designed to do.

With DRaaS, a third-party provider like LightBound hosts and continually replicates your servers. This allows your business to failover in a disaster scenario so you can continue normal business operations until your on-premises environment is restored to normal.

DRaaS protects both your data and infrastructure. Any time there are file changes, DRaaS automatically replicates those changes to a different location geographically—that of your provider.

All in all, DRaaS means that any time you experience downtime, it won’t be for long. With basic backup procedures, downtime can last hours or even days, but DRaaS reduces downtime to mere minutes:

  • RTO (Recovery Time Objective) is the time in the future your business will be up again, which is measured in only minutes with DRaaS
  • RPO (Recovery Point Objective) is the point in time you recover to in the past, which is measured in only seconds with DRaaS
Orange and blue document icon symbolizing a Copy, Duplicate, or Replication

How Does the Replication Technology Behind DRaaS Work?

From a more technical standpoint, LightBound’s Disaster Recovery as a Service is what’s known as a hypervisor-based replication solution. With hypervisor-based replication, each time a virtual machine (VM) writes to its virtual disk, the written command is automatically and continuously captured, cloned, and sent to the recovery site with no impact on application performance.

Regardless of underlying infrastructure at a virtual level for both storage and server locations, enterprise applications are recovered with consistency through hypervisor-based replication. The replication technology consists of:

  • A virtual manager that manages disaster recovery, business continuity, and offsite backup functionality at the site level
  • A virtual replication appliance that replicates the VMs and associated virtual disks and copies I/O (input/output) as it is created before it leaves the hypervisor

Other physically-bound disaster recovery solutions, including array-based replication and appliance-based replication, work in the virtual environment, but they aren’t optimized for it. This prevents the full benefits and capabilities of virtualization from being received.

Hypervisor-based replication bridges this gap in the data protection strategy because it is perfectly optimized for virtual environments, offering major benefits without the drawbacks of other solutions.

Benefits of hypervisor-based replication include:

  • The virtual manager, installed directly inside the virtual infrastructure, is able to tap into a virtual machine’s IO stream, making it more efficient, accurate, and responsive than prior methods
  • Continuous replication with zero impact on application performance
  • There are no guest-host requirements or additional hardware footprint
  • You can quickly move virtual machines around from one physical server or array logical unit (data store) to another
  • It’s fully hardware-agnostic to storage source and destination, able to replicate to anything from anything
  • Achieves RPO in seconds and RTO in minutes
The word "recovery" written on a notepad for disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS)

How Does Disaster Recovery as a Service Work?

1. Getting started with LightBound’s DRaaS.

Choosing your provider is a crucial first step and can make or break your DRaaS experience. Once you’ve found the right provider, it’s time to get set up.

With LightBound as your provider, we will work personally with you to create a custom plan for your company. Deployment is extremely fast, only taking a fraction of the time needed for traditional disaster recovery setups. The failover is fully configured to simplify your recovery process to only a few clicks.

Once deployed, your servers will be continuously replicated over LightBound’s private fiber optics. With LightBound you can expect:

  • Testing 2x annually to ensure a fast and efficient recovery
  • Your data is stored in an SSAE 16 SOC 2 Certified data center
  • 24/7/365  monitoring by skilled support staff
  • Guaranteed resource pool reservation

2. Disaster strikes your business.

You never know when disaster will strike your business, but when it does, you’ll want to be ready. Whether an employee accidentally formats a company hard drive or a major hurricane strikes your office building, disaster can take on many forms, big and small. Thankfully, choosing DRaaS means that no matter the cause of the disaster, you are ready.

3. Automated switch to failover operations.

Even after a disaster has struck your business, your applications are still being served through the cloud with minimal or no data loss thanks to the seconds-long RPO DRaaS is able to provide.

DRaaS fails over processing to the cloud so your organization can continue to operate during a disaster. The failover notice can be automated or manual. In a high-pressure scenario, your IT can count on DRaaS to provide automated and orchestrated processes that can be executed in just a few clicks.

For manual initiation of failover, the process is simple:

  1. Click “failover” in your management console
  2. Select the applications that need recovery
  3. Choose the point in time to which your apps need to be restored (to the point when they were not corrupted)
  4. Start the failover process

4. Automated failback.

The DRaaS operation remains in effect until your IT team can repair the on-premises environment and issue a failback order. Many businesses without DRaaS avoid failover because failback can be a huge ordeal, but LightBound’s DRaaS makes failback easy. After your environment is back up and running, it is only a few clicks to failback.

Ready to Get Started with DRaaS?

DRaaS makes recovering from disaster affordable, achievable, and fast. If you’re interested in learning more about Disaster Recovery as a Service or its benefits, contact LightBound today. Our experts will help answer any questions you might have about cloud data recovery and more.