A datacenter is a large storage facility with a lot of computers used for storing digital information. One of the largest datacenters in the world exists inside of Google’s huge multiplex – called Googleplex – in Mountain View, California. Inside of Google’s datacenter is where all of the search indexing and ranking of websites takes place. Google crawls the Web from its datacenter and stores a copy of the web pages it indexes then analyzes those web pages in order to rank them for specific search queries. When a searcher requests information, Google queries its datacenter to return the results that match that searcher’s request.
A datacenter can be large or small. There is no limit to its size or ability other than the limitations of current technology. Many companies have a need for a datacenter, but not all companies need to own their datacenter. Renting a datacenter is a viable option for some.
In fact, according to Data Center Knowledge, Matt Mullenweg has said that one of the biggest mistakes make by WordPress.com was buying its own computers. Instead of using those computers for storage, Mullenweg decided to use Amazon’s cloud services for storage, but he’d rather use an open source system that he can control. Every company has its own needs.
One of the decisions that you’ll have to make when you decide to open a datacenter is whether or not you should own your own resources or rent something from another provider. There are pros and cons to each.