Insight and analysis on the data center space from industry thought leaders.

Cloud Computing: Could Your Cloud Dissipate?

Nathan Hatch, President of C7 Data Centers, explains one of the central tenants of cloud computing: namely, where is my cloud and why should I care about its location?

Industry Perspectives

October 18, 2011

3 Min Read
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Nathan Hatch is President and CEO of C7 Data Centers, a privately held company focused on providing high-value data center solutions for colocation, disaster recovery, data backup and virtualization.

Nathan Hatch


C7 Data Centers

Cloud formations come in different varieties—nimbus, cumulus, and cirrus, to name a few. These clouds are wondrous in their formation and sometimes inexplicable in their detail. Cloud computing, by its description, may seem just as amazing and mysterious. But knowing just what you are getting will determine if storms are on the horizon.

Unlike atmospheric clouds, computing clouds don’t rain, move in and out with air-currents, nor do they always need to be visible. Cloud computing is created and expected to form a basis for the delivery of dependable, uninterrupted computing services.

The subject of cloud computing is multi-faceted as it is central in discussions on cloud services, in cloud computing models, and in identifying computing characteristics. My intent in this writing is to unmask one of the key mysteries of cloud computing: namely, where is my cloud and why should I care about its location?

Cloud environments come chiefly in three forms: private, public, and hybrid. Each form has its inherent advantages and disadvantages. Common to all, however, is the need to understand where the cloud is and why that location or locations are critical.

For most of the computer-loving and computer-using public, the location of the cloud is irrelevant. That is, until the file you need is unavailable, the movie you promised to watch with your daughter is not playable, or the annual sales report you need to submit is obsolete—all of this because your access to the cloud’s information is interrupted. All at once, knowledge of your cloud’s location is of primary concern and becomes the critical issue for you.

Each of us likely has someone to ask—someone who should know or someone who should have known better. In times of storm we tend to run for cover to get out of the rain. An answer to the question of why I have lost access to my data is the relevant question when shopping for or building out a cloud solution.

When Choosing A Vendor, Location Is Important

The key question that must be answered in the selection of a cloud vendor or the location of your own cloud is—to borrow an oft-used phrase from the real estate industry—location, location, location.

Just like real property, the “neighborhood” and “amenities” of your cloud service’s location is critical. Cloud computing is only as good as its home. Make the selection of the facility that hosts your cloud your highest priority; then concerns of dissipation will not leave you crying for coverage.

In the coming weeks, I will discuss what to look for as you evaluate this important issue of the facility that your cloud environment is operating from.

Industry Perspectives is a content channel at Data Center Knowledge highlighting thought leadership in the data center arena. See our guidelines and submission process for information on participating. View previously published Industry Perspectives in our Knowledge Library.

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