8 Things to Check Before Getting Your Dedicated Server

Are you in the process of looking for a dedicated server provider? If so, it’s worth doing your own research instead of picking the first offer you see. We listed the top 8 things to check before ordering a dedicated server.

1/5/20243 min read

8 Things to Check Before Getting Your Dedicated Server

Are you in the process of looking for a dedicated server provider? If so, it’s worth doing your own research instead of picking the first offer you see. We listed the top 8 things to check before ordering a dedicated server.

1. 24/7 Support

Almost every data center offers 24/7 support. The question is: How fast do they reply? It’s highly recommended to contact providers on live chat while evaluating options. It’s one of the first things you can do when entering their website. Additionally, go over your requirements checklist with their live consultant. They can always explain every detail of their services and provide additional information. If not, you know that their support quality may not be up to par. You could also create a simple ticket or send an email for technical support and trace their response time. Anything below 15-20 min is a good result. (Don’t forget to consider that it takes extra time to receive and deliver an email.)

2. Managed or Unmanaged Server

Double-check whether the hosting provider offers managed or unmanaged servers. From time to time, clients purchase a server and expect that support will install their software and do other server administrator tasks, but they simply do not offer this kind of service. A certain dedicated server offering might be cheaper because this service is not included.

3. Backups

Backups must be your number one priority for business. It’s not worth it to put your business at risk to save a few dollars. Don’t keep your backups on the same server, and don’t trust RAID to protect your data. What happens if the data center is damaged by fire or water? There’s a good chance that all servers will be destroyed. It’s highly recommended to keep backups in a totally different data center. Check if they can offer any third-party software with completely off-site backups.

4. Customization Options

Bare-metal or dedicated servers can be customized on your request. This means you can add RAM, get more hard disks, change the GPU, and more. While the CPU usually can’t be replaced without migrating to a new server, nearly all other components can. Double-check that you can upgrade your server later. You never know when you might need more storage space or RAM.

5. Bandwidth / Traffic

Some projects might use an extreme amount of Internet bandwidth or require an unusually fast connection. In order to avoid unexpected costs, ask about the hosting provider’s traffic policy. Even if they say it’s unlimited or unmetered, ask them a question: Does it mean that a customer can use 1Gbps and upload or download 330TB of data in 1 month? Unmetered traffic is marketing terminology. Most of the time, there is at least some kind of fair usage policy.

6. SLA – Service Level Agreement

In some cases, this document might save your entire business (or at least a lot of money). You can check server deployment time, 24/7 support obligations, and data center uptime. We all know that data center uptime is generally advertised to be ~99.99%, but this is another marketing trick because it’s almost impossible to track the exact uptime percentage. For instance, some maintenance problems or network issues might affect only a subset of the provider’s dedicated servers. It’s worth asking how they are prepared to compensate customers for downtime.

7. Location and Latency

It’s a long route between Europe and North America. You may reduce ping time by having your server close to where you live, your office, or where your clients are situated. If low ping time is an essential concern for your project, ask for a ping test prior to purchasing.

8. RAID

RAID 1 (mirrored disks) duplicates data across two disks in the array, providing full redundancy. Two disks each store exactly the same data, at the same time, and at all times. Data is not lost as long as one disk survives. It means that 2x 240GB SSD RAID1 is only 240GB of available storage space. It’s highly recommended for dedicated servers. Other RAID options include RAID 0, RAID 5, RAID 6, and RAID 10.

You can use the RAID calculator here: http://www.raid-calculator.com/

If these suggestions seem daunting or excessively time-consuming, that’s perfectly understandable. If you need help at any point on your migration to a dedicated server, please contact us. We will help you find the right dedicated server for your business.