Should Set Up Your Own Server For Your Small Business?

Should Set Up Your Own Server For Your Small Business
Engineer in the server room close-up. Photo taken at a Data Center in Bulgaria, Eastern Europe.

Many business owners believe that they are in control of their company. This is true to a degree but they really are at the mercy of many outside factors. One of which is their hosting for the company website and for the data that you need stored. 

When you hand over the keys to your website or data, you are hoping that your host is fast, secure and reliable. Your business depends on it. If you have had some problems with hosting in the past then you know how important it is.

The alternative is to make your own server so you are in total control. In this article, we will go over what it means to have your own server so you can decide if it is the best move for your business. 

Is it expensive?

The cost for getting started with your own server can be quite a lot at first glance. The equipment and paying a technician to set it up is not cheap. You can save some money by using refurbished hardware, but expect it to take a bite out of your budget.  How much exactly is hard to determine because there are so many kinds. It also highly depends on how many terabytes of memory you need. You will pay more for racks of equipment to handle large amounts of memory. 

Then you do have to pay somebody to manage it for you which can end up costing more than what you would pay for hosting with a third party. 

If you are using a lot of data then these costs can even themselves out and the server could end up paying for itself. For instance, if you have a media company and a lot of data is video or audio and large files, then hosting will end up costing quite a bit. It can cost over $10 per month per user for cloud storage and is capped at 1TB. That’s not nearly enough storage for most media companies. 

Can you do it yourself?

The learning curve is fairly steep for setting up your own server. If you have the time, however, it is entirely doable and you can save a good amount of money this way. However, the network can be tricky to get set up so having a pro come and do it the first time is probably a good idea. 

You can also buy a prebuilt server that is ready to go. They also have bundles that include things like software and a warranty. Unless you have some very specific needs and require some customization then a prebuilt server is probably going to work best for your business. 

What kind of server do you need?

There are three main types of systems for you to choose from. There is a rackmount, tower or blade. A tower is going to look very similar to a computer drive and functions in much the same way. If your data and hosting needs are not that great then a tower will likely give you enough processing power. 

A rackmount is a series of slots that hold each server and then they are connected to each other. This is good when you need a lot of data storage and the need is growing. You can add more slots and servers as your needs expand. 

Lastly, the blade is very similar to a rackmount but requires a chassis. They are for large scale computing needs but save space considering how much storage they provide.