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Best of the Data Center Blogs for Jan. 7

This week's notable posts: Mark Thiele on data enter location, Greg Ness sizes up VMware, Chris Crosby discusses new players and their business models, GigaStacey looks at server market segmentation, and Rob Powell explores what 2013 holds for Level 3.

Here’s a roundup of some interesting items we came across this week in our reading of data center industry blogs.

No Man is an Island and Neither is a Data Center - At Data Center Pulse, Mark Thiele looks at location in a post-Sandy world: "Is it safe to build a data center anywhere along the coast? Can you really protect the availability or accessibility of your systems in the face of hurricanes, earthquakes, and other natural disasters? Just because you've built a solid structure, doesn't mean you can guarantee accessibility and your data center is nothing without connections."

Could VMware Beat Amazon in the Cloud? - CloudVelocity's Greg Ness looks at VMware's opportunity: "2013 promises to be a watershed year for several tech companies, from VMware, Cisco, Juniper, and Amazon to a wide range of service providers who have been traditionally viewed as niche or segment specialists. Let’s start with VMware, who perhaps fueled the march toward software and service-defined IT."

The Five Tool Player: Service Provider Financial Considerations - At Compass Points, Chris Crosby discusses new market entrants and what they need to know. "Few of us spend our youth dreaming of the day that we can become a data center provider or operator—I wanted to be a secret agent—but as we get older things change and new opportunities open up to us. Lately it seems like more and more folks are looking to embrace these new opportunities and become data center providers."

All Computing Isn’t Equal: Here are the Four Types - At GigaOm, Stacey Higginbotham looks at the segmentation in the server market: "The world of data centers, servers and networking cables looks pretty monolithic to most people, but like Darwin’s finches, when you spend time talking to users you realize that they have evolved into different creatures. And because the types of machines and software that enterprise customers buy are very different from what Amazon might purchase to run its cloud, it’s worth it to understand the differences if you’re buying from, selling to or investing in infrastructure companies."

Level 3 Awaits Its 2013 Sunrise - Rob Powell at Telecom Ramblings, who has been tracking Level 3 for years, provides an update: "The most important change this year for Level 3 will simply be the flexibility they gain by not having a debt load that is so outsized compared to their operations as to distort their decisions. When you’re making a profit despite the debt, which they should start doing by summertime, you simply have more options to generate the growth that everyone is expecting. And only growth can turn those incremental margins they have been pointing to for a decade into real money."