Your business may benefit from a quarter rack colocation solution. Find out how.


quarter rack colocation


Quarter Rack Colocation: What Is It?

What Is Colocation?

When you use colocation services, you are basically renting space in a data center for your dedicated servers. You own all of your servers and any other hardware equipment that you put there, and you are simply renting the space where they are stored. It’s similar to renting a house. You own all of the items that you put into your rental home, but you don’t own the house itself. You are using someone else’s space to house you and your space. However, only your servers will be staying at the colo facility, not you.

What Is Quarter Rack Colocation?

When you rent space in a data center, your equipment will be stored on racks. Quarter rack colocation means that you are using one quarter of the space of a full rack.


Quarter Rack Colocation – Who Is It for?

Quarter Rack Colocation Is Perfect for Smaller/Start-up Companies

Quarter rack colocation is perfect for a smaller company that doesn’t have a lot of equipment to store. The great thing about colocation is that you only have to pay for the amount of space that you are actually using. You don’t have to fill up a whole rack to take advantage of colo services nor do you have to pay for space that you aren’t using.


data center

You can rent space in a data center to store your dedicated servers


Colocation Pricing

A server colocation service and its corresponding pricing is largely determined by the amount of space you need to rent for your equipment. Here are some terms that will help you to further understand how colocation and colocation pricing works.


“U” refers to the unit of measurement when talking about rack space at a colocation facility. 1U is equal to 1.75 inches in height on a rack. For example, a piece of equipment that is 3.5 inches high would take up 2U of rack space.

Quarter Rack Colocation:

The term quarter rack usually refers to 10U of space on a full sized rack or about one-quarter of the space on the rack. If your equipment won’t take up a full rack, but only a quarter of one, then quarter rack colocation is a good choice for you.

Full Rack Colocation:

Most full-sized rack cages in a data center are 42U high and either 19 or 23 inches wide. Your individual pieces of equipment stored on these racks are usually anywhere from 1U to 4U high. Most rack-mount servers take up 1-2 Us of space.

It is important to remember though that racks are not always a standardized number of Us. You can have full racks that are 42U, 45U, 48U, or 50U. Find out from your colocation provider how many Us their full racks actually are. This is important information, as you want to make sure that the rack space you are getting is going to be sufficient for the size of equipment that you have.


1u colocation rack

If you require less space for your servers, you can choose quarter rack colocation


Half Rack Colocation:

Half rack colocation can mean a few different things. It can be used to refer to:

  • A piece of equipment that only takes up half the width of a rack frame – two such pieces of equipment can be placed side by side on a rack.
  • A piece of equipment that only takes up half the depth of a rack frame – two such pieces of equipment can be placed on the same rack, one in the front and one at the back.
  • A rack enclosure that is half the height of a full rack (22U tall).


Rack Space


Different components will take up different amounts of space on a rack – Source: Wikipedia 


Why Would Your Business Need Colocation Services?

Server colocation has a number of great benefits. These include:

Smaller Investment:

Setting up and maintaining an IT department is a big investment. You need a facility that is equipped to properly maintain and house your IT equipment as well as the personnel to care for it. If you are a smaller or start-up business, you may not have the capital to invest in your own IT department. Colocation enables you to share space in a data center that is already designed to care for your equipment at a fraction of the cost of setting up and maintaining your own.

Saves Space:

An IT department takes up space to keep all of your hardware as well as the HVAC units and back-up systems to maintain it. Colocation lets you keep your computer equipment off-site so that you can use that space for other things that are related to your business.


colocation facility

A colocation facility can provide you with security, back-up power, and connectivity – Image Source: IO [CC BY-SA 4.0 (]


Great Security:

When you use the services of a colo provider, you are putting your equipment into a facility that is safe, secure, and reliable. A colocation data center will have back-up power, backup Internet connectivity, and powerful HVAC systems designed to keep your equipment at a constant cool temperature. They will also have security features to protect your sensitive data from getting lost, damaged, or stolen.

Off-Site Backup:

Colocation is great as an off-site back up solution, as your data will be kept at a site separate from your main facility. The huge advantage of this scenario is that your data can be protected from disaster situations that may affect your main business site. You will have an automatic backup of your data, thus reducing or eliminating any downtime.

Networking Solution:

You may also want to use your colocation facility as a networking solution like a hosted firewall. In this situation, you may choose to put multiple routers, multiple switches, multiple firewalls and one single server at the colocation data center.


IT service professionals

You may need to pay an initial set up fee


How Is Colocation Pricing Determined?

The Amount of Space You Need: More Space = Higher Cost

The amount of space that your equipment needs in the data center will affect the price that you pay. Quarter rack colocation will cost less than full rack colocation.

The Initial Setup of Your Hardware: Larger Project = Higher Cost

You will probably need to pay an initial set up fee when you begin colocation hosting. Your equipment will have to be physically moved to the data center and then installed. This setup requires time to perform and may be done by the internal team at the data center or someone in your IT department. If your IT department does this set-up, then it will cost you less.


remote hands service

You can choose to have your colocation provider monitor your equipment for you



The Type of Internet Connection You Want: Better Connection = Higher Cost

To access your equipment at the colocation site from your own facility, you will need an Internet-based VPN connection. You may require an above-average bandwidth to compensate for the distance between the two locations so that your software can operate at high enough speeds. You may also need to purchase dedicated IP addresses as your current Internet Service Provider may not service the data center that you are going to use.

Additional Support for Your Equipment: Additional Support = Higher Cost

Colocation is not a managed service, however, some data centers may provide this service to you for an additional fee. You will need to determine who will be responsible for monitoring and maintaining your equipment at the data center. If you are going to be doing that yourself, you will need to make sure that you send someone to the data center on a regular basis. Another option is to pay for an outsourced provider to be responsible for monitoring your equipment on a regular basis.


Get a Customized Colocation Package

At DSC we understand that each business is unique. That is why we customize our colocation packages to match your specific needs. Whether you need full, half, or quarter rack colocation, DSC can help you decide as well and answer any questions you may have. Contact DSC today for your customized quote.


Want to Learn More about Colocation?

Find out our more about colocation and if it is right for your business. Click here to download your free copy of The Ultimate Guide to Colocation!


colocation ebook



You Can Trust DSC for Secure Quarter Rack Colocation Services

Digital Services Consultants is a premier data center located just outside of Atlanta, Georgia in Buford. We offer you the safest IT solutions possible, including quarter rack colocation. Along with our top-notch server colocation, we provide a full range of internet- related and cloud services including cloud backup, system monitoring, software hosting, dedicated email, website development and implementation, web hosting, e-commerce, security, and a variety of related products and services.

We also provide network support for Linus, Microsoft server and workstation platforms, Fortinet firewalls, and Cisco Systems. DSC has been a trusted name in the IT industry in Atlanta for more than 30 years. Contact us today for all of your internet-related requirements.


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