Industrial-Grade Equipment for the Ultimate Performance
Our servers are leased from Alabanza, Inc., a highly
respected leader in providing automated hosting solutions
for hosting companies.
Alabanza's Network Operations Center (NOC) features raised
flooring. This enables a constant flow of conditioned air
and helps to maintain uniform room temperature at all times.
In addition, raised flooring reduces static and ensures a
professional, computer grade environment for your servers.
The facility is equipped with a Raytheon fire suppression
system, designed to immediately extinguish fire and protect
equipment and personnel. The command center is controlled
via automatic doors to further secure and protect the equipment.
Finally, the NOC is located in a secure, monitored, class
A building with a minimum number of approved personnel allowed
access to highly sensitive areas and equipment. A detailed
record of employee and visitor entry is maintained at all
Uninterruptible Power System
To guard against local power failures, Alabanza has two industrial-grade,
three phase Liebert UPS systems. These act as back-up batteries,
maintaining uninterrupted power in case of surges or power
outages. With these backup systems in place, we can keep our
network up and running indefinitely without relying on external
Industrial-Grade Air Conditioners
Alabanza's NOC has two Liebert ten ton industrial air conditioners,
which condition our computer rooms and operations center.
Our computer room is kept at an optimal temperature of 65
Custom Web Servers
Alabanza's web servers are custom-built industrial machines
designed for a 24/7 web serving environment. All Alabanza
servers are equipped with dual redundant 450-watt power supplies,
hot swap Seagate Baracuda/Cheetah drives and force-filtered
cooling systems. In addition, our NOC is equipped with an
inventory of identically configured, burned-in standby servers.
Force Filtered Cooling
All of Alabanza's custom web servers are equipped with a positive
pressure filtered-air system. Four large fans pull filtered
air into each server's protective case and the components
within are cooled by fans which circulate this purified air.
This constant introduction of clean air into the case creates
a positive pressure environment ensuring dust and particles
remain outside of the server.
Hot Swap Seagate Drives
The drives and drive bays of all Alabanza servers are constructed
from high-grade aluminum, and rest in shock mounted drive
cages, which adds to the durability of the hardware. Alabanza's
drives proudly feature the lowest failure rate in the industry.
Redundant Hot Swap Power Supplies
Each server employs dual-redundant hot swap power supplies.
If a power supply were to fail, the server would continue
running with power from the alternate supply. Meanwhile, alarms
would alert a technician, who would quickly restore redundancy.
In the meantime, servers and client sites would experience
We keep spare servers on-line of all CPU configurations. If
a server were to experience a hardware failure, we would turn
a key, grab the handle on the drive, pull it out, and insert
it into an identical standby CPU. We would then reboot the
second machine and the server would be up and running again
in a matter of minutes.
Connected to Three Backbones
The Alabanza NOC located in Baltimore, Maryland is OnNet with
GlobalCenter (GC), Qwest Communications and GTE through three
separate bandwidth-on-demand connections which enter Baltimore
in our building.
GC, a Tier 1 provider whose 13,000-mile fiber optic network
and Dense Wave Division Multiplexing (DWDM) technology provide
an enormous 460 gigabytes per second (Gbps) of capacity worldwide,
has an Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) fiber node located
just a few floors below the Alabanza NOC.
Qwest comes into Baltimore with an OC-12 line and plans to
upgrade their connection to an OC-48 in the near future. They
also have an ATM fiber node floors below the Alabanza NOC.
Our Qwest connection enables Alabanza to offer additional
redundancy and better routes to Europe, Latin America and
Asia. With our carriers, our router has up to 150,000 possible
routes to send each packet of traffic.
Genuity, a division of GTE, is our third Tier One Internet
backbone. Genuity provides excellent network performance as
a result of their high-speed peering arrangements with other
Tier One Internet backbone providers. The GTE global network
delivers customers directly onto the Internet via a high-speed
connection to its private, super-capacity backbone, including
17,000 miles of fiber and OC192 capacity. It is comprised
of more than 800 U.S. local access points and approximately
1,500 international local access points in more than 150 countries.
Furthermore, because of these unique connections, Alabanza
does not need to link to the Internet though an OC3 or T3
Telecom circuit. Instead, independent cables run inside our
building directly from the Alabanza NOC to all three carriers
points of presence. These lines can handle the bandwidth of
a T3 or an OC3 with DWDM. Plus, they handle several times
the bandwidth of an OC3. Whatever your bandwidth needs may
be, Alabanza has the scalability to meet them.
Alabanza uses intelligent end-user routing software called
Border Gateway Protocol (BGP), between Qwest, GC and GTE,
who use the same protocol. BGP identifies which path is the
most efficient for each data packet and then routes the packet
to its destination on the fastest path. This increases the
speed at which web pages sent from our NOC arrive at their
Studies have shown that the most common reason for downtime
is circuit failure on Tier 1 provider backbones, the major
data highways. To guard against this potential problem, we
have three Tier-1 providers. If one experiences problems,
we can route traffic down the other one. Furthermore, because
we are OnNet with GlobalCenter, Qwest and GTE, we share their
digital distribution architecture, which includes private
peering network connections to major Internet carriers such
as MCI, Sprint, UUNET, EUNET, AT&T, AOL, Best, Erols, @Home,
IBM Advantis and others. These private peering arrangements
allow Alabanza to exchange packets of data with every major
backbone carrier in a one-to-one environment quickly and efficiently.
In addition, GC has high-speed links to eight public exchanges
including both MAE East and West and several NAPS. Through
these public exchanges, customers have the ability to reach
their site, no matter from where they are coming on the Internet.
Industry analysis reveals that 70% of downtime over ten hours
with any ISP is caused by telephone circuit failure. Since
our NOC is in the same building as Global Center, Qwest and
GTE, circuit failure is virtually eliminated because there
is no phone circuit between us and our providers. Instead,
there is a direct connection between our Cisco 7500 routers
Alabanza's providers also have peering connections with other
major Tier 1 providers, which allows traffic to be switched
to alternate backbones should the need arise.
Raw Performance Equals Low Latency/High Throughput
Too often providers operate their networks at three to four
times responsible capacity. As a result, their corresponding
transfer times reach over 300ms. Alabanza's network daily
average is 27% of its capacity, with midday peak spikes reaching
only 33% capacity. Alabanza guarantees clients will be carried
off our network in less than 80ms over a five minute average
at any time of day or night.