Does Size Matter when it Comes to Chicagoland Colocation?

360TCS is what we like to refer to as a “Boutique Style” provider of colocation services in the Chicago area. It is very common for 360TCS to compete head to head with what I like to call the “Big Box” Data Centers. It is not uncommon for end users to consider these types of facilities first when they begin to explore options for colocation. While I am certainly a proponent of shopping around, limiting your vendor search to the “Big Box” providers may result in overlooking the unique opportunity to find a vendor whose solution may truly be a better fit.

Here are several reasons why 360TCS, a “Boutique Style”, Data Center can be a better solution and outperform the “Big Box” facilities.


The reality is that many of these “Big Box” Data Centers are old. By technology standards they are actually ancient. When you think of how quickly technology advances wouldn’t you prefer the technology that supports your critical compute environment to be the latest and greatest available?  A ’57 Chevy might be a cool car but is it the most reliable? While any quality facility will continue to upgrade their infrastructure the upgrades themselves can end up impacting  the availability of services. 

“Boutique Style” Data Centers are typically newer. 360TCS was built within the last 2-3 years with environmentally friendly, efficient technology. Every component of our mission critical infrastructure is new and considered “best of breed”. After the commissioning our data center in October 2008 and our first customers going live in November, we recently passed our 2 year anniversary this past fall with literally ZERO downtime to date.


Some of these “Big Box” Data Centers are located in the “downtown” section of large metropolitan areas which can lead to a whole different set of issues including traffic, parking, proximity to potential terrorist targets etc. There is always the potential for disruption based on the typical ongoing construction in the city.

360TCS is located in Lombard, IL. Close enough to the city to make our facility easily accessible by multiple expressways and major airports but far enough to make us suitable for Disaster Recovery initiatives requiring physical diversity.


“Big Box” Data Centers have hundreds of employees. How familiar with your specific build out and what is important to your business will they be should you find yourself in need of some technical assistance? At most “Big Box” Data Centers, very few customers warrant special attention. What if you are on site and find yourself in need of a power cord, a set of server rails, nuts and bolts or tools? Most “Big Box” stores will direct you to the nearest CDW or Home Depot.

At 360TCS, due to the relatively small physical size of the facility, and our entrepreneurial approach to doing business, our staff is able to become familiar with ALL of our client’s build outs. This gives us the ability to provide a level of service that is unattainable at the “Big Box” providers. EVERY client is a big fish at 360TCS and we are there to help our clients with whatever they need. In fact, it is typical that we include free remote hands time to assist each client with the install process and we never nickel and dime our clients for simple requests. Our philosophy is simple: We treat our clients the way we would expect to be treated by our key vendors.


It has been my experience that “Big Box” colocation providers struggle to deliver and effectively cool high density power requirements. Since their facilities and infrastructure were designed to support legacy technology, most can support densities between 150 and 200 Watts per ft2. In many cases that is sufficient, but what if you need more power? Expect to pay for additional cabinet space you don’t need or be told it is flat out not available.

360TCS can support power densities over 550 Watts per ft2. Would you like to populate your cabinet with 4 or 5  fully loaded blade chassis? How about 3 phase power for your IBM I-Series or your power hungry EMC storage devices. 360TCS is great option and in many cases the only option for you.

Find out why our clients tell us we are the best Data Center provider they have found. Experience for yourself what is like to enjoy true customer service again, an all to rare comodity in this day and age.

If you would like to learn more about 360TCS and how we can help you add a level of redundancy to your IT infrastructure, do not hesitate to contact me directly to arrange a site visit and Data Center tour.

Don Welbourn 

Director of Sales/Account Relations


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