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Co-Location Services

Many organizations already own their own equipment for hosting applications, but find that they are simply running out of floor space or lack the resources to house their hardware properly. To address this problem, CIT provides housing for your equipment in a secure, climate-controlled environment, where customers have 24x7 access to manage their own hardware.

The Co-Location Service provides housing for customer-owned servers and other equipment either in building 12 on-campus in the NIH Data Center's Customer Server Areas (CSA-1 or CSA-2) or off-campus in the NIH Consolidated Co-Location Site (NCCS) in northern Virginia. The service includes full or partial rack rental. Co-Location provides:
  • Various rental options - full, or partial, standard-size racks for your use
  • Charging based on the amount of rack space needed
  • 24x7 access to your equipment

 Physical security:

  • Multi-layer security control procedures
  • Badge and biometric readers
  • 24x7 closed-circuit video
  • Operations staff on-site, 24x7
  • Yearly SSAE 16 (formerly SAS/70) Type II audit


  • N+2 continuous redundant power with diesel generator backup
  • Power solutions that are flexible and upgradeable


  • Redundant, high-bandwidth network connectivity
  • Overhead cable management - providing easy access to all cabling

Environmental controls:

  • Dedicated CRAC (Computer Room Air Conditioner) units to monitor and maintain temperature, air distribution, and humidity
  • Fire suppression: VESDA deployed 100% in multiple zones throughout the facility above and below raised floors


Customer Benefits

CIT provides housing at a reasonable cost for your servers in a secure, climate-controlled environment. Customers can control and access their own equipment either on-campus in the NIH Data Center's Customer Server Areas (CSA-1 or CSA-2) or off-campus in the NIH Consolidated Co-Location Site (NCCS) in northern Virginia.
The on-campus Co-Location sites are an attractive option for customers who have already invested in servers and related equipment but do not have a suitable server environment close by.
The off-campus Co-Location site is approximately 30 miles away from the NIH campus, in a secure location in northern Virginia. This site, connected by extremely high bandwidth, is under the auspices of CIT and ensures the full confidentiality, availability, and integrity of NIH information.
Because of its location, off-campus Co-Location offers a highly reliable, secure backup site for hosted applications and websites so that business can carry on as usual in the event of a disaster.

Customer Market

This service is available to all NIH customers On-Campus and to all NIH customers and other government agencies Off-Campus.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What does CIT provide to Co-Location customers?
A: CIT provides physical security to the server area, locked server racks, reliable infrastructure/climate control, continuous power system (CPS), redundant high-bandwidth connectivity, and 24 X 7 operations staff on site. Customers have control and access to their own equipment 24x7 at both our on- and off-campus sites.


Q: How secure are my servers if I have them installed in your off-site location?  
A: The off-site facility is every bit as secure as the on-site data center.  The off-site Co-Location site is 30 miles from the NIH campus. It meets disaster recovery and COOP (Continuity of Operations Plan) requirements, but is still close enough to visit.


Q: What costs are involved for this service? 
A: The costs include a setup charge and individual rack charges. The rates can be found at: under “Miscellaneous Services.” 

Q: Can I use Co-Location for disaster recovery? 
A: Yes. Our off-campus location provides customers participating in CIT's Disaster Recovery Program with facilities for
continued processing in the event of an extended data center interruption. See the NIH Data Center's Disaster Recovery webpage for more information.
Q: How can I learn more? 
A: To learn more about the Co-Location Service, please contact the NIH IT Service Desk at 301-496-4357 (local), 866-319-4357 (toll free), or 301-496-8294 (TTY) and ask to speak to the Co-Location staff.



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This page last reviewed: March 09, 2011