WTB: Colo/Data Center Space near Manhattan/NYC for non-critical homelab

Alfa147x

Member
Feb 7, 2014
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Hi all,

I am being forced to move to Manhattan and need to stash my homelab which is in a rack enclosure on beefy wheels - Tripp Lite's SRW21UG (21U). I would like to keep the hardware in the rack but I'm open to installing it into a DC's rack.

This is what I have in the enclosure today:
  • Sophos fw appliance
  • 48 port switch
  • 4 - 5 RPIs
  • 2u VM host (X10SLL-F/E3-1230 v3)
  • Lenovo sa120 DAS shelf
  • UPS
I'm also open to advise on how to best go about finding space as I'm way out of my wheelhouse here. I'm absolutely looking to keep my costs down and can sign a 1 or 2-year commitment.

Thanks for any leads,
Alfa
 

BoredSysadmin

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Mar 2, 2019
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I don't know any low-budget options, most colo datacenters near NYC are enterprise level. The costs vary, but you really have to travel quite far to get to affordable.
For example, Iron Mountain in 3003 Woodbridge Ave, Edison, NJ - you could get your own secure rack in a shared pod. The cost will depend on power usage, but generally expect $700-1000 per month.
Maybe these guys will do partial cabinet colo:
 
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Blinky 42

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Aug 6, 2015
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Do you have a budget in mind? How often do you need to physically work on the servers, and what sort of bandwidth and # of IPv4's will you need?
If you want to go there and tinker on things often then that limits you to something < 1h away or probably walking distance from mass transit. There are a lot of commercial colo options of varying quality, amenities and cost in the city and northern NJ. I would expect to pay 500-700 for a 1/2 rack in mid-level colos with 24x7 access and staffed 24x7.

You might also be able to find some co-working / maker type space that you can stash your existing rack in and run a vpn from your rack back to your house. Offices that can't bail on their leases but still have empty space to fill might be able to host you for a song in an empty office or a corner of an existing data room to offset their losses.
 

Alfa147x

Member
Feb 7, 2014
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Do you have a budget in mind? How often do you need to physically work on the servers, and what sort of bandwidth and # of IPv4's will you need?
If you want to go there and tinker on things often then that limits you to something < 1h away or probably walking distance from mass transit. There are a lot of commercial colo options of varying quality, amenities and cost in the city and northern NJ. I would expect to pay 500-700 for a 1/2 rack in mid-level colos with 24x7 access and staffed 24x7.

You might also be able to find some co-working / maker type space that you can stash your existing rack in and run a vpn from your rack back to your house. Offices that can't bail on their leases but still have empty space to fill might be able to host you for a song in an empty office or a corner of an existing data room to offset their losses.

Hey, thanks for jumping in here.

  • Budget: $300 - $500/m - Happy to commit for 2 yrs
  • IPv4: /32 or /31 @ 1 Gbit/s
  • Power: lower power consumption CPUs (E3-1230 v3 and AMD AM1)
  • Access: Twice a month is fine
  • Transit time: I'm fine taking the train for 1 - 2 hrs

This isn't mission-critical but will host personal backup data so I would like to have peace of mind that my equipment is secure.
 

Blinky 42

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Aug 6, 2015
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For 300-500/mo you probably are going to have better luck sharing a space with someone else who has a mostly empty cabinet, or swing a deal with someone who has some office space nearby.
I don't know of anything that inexpensive except for shared space colo, where your stuff is racked up in open racks along with others. Access is frequently limited and supervised in those situations - or you hope it is so people don't "accidentally" mess with your servers.

You may want to start local and look for places like design firms or smaller computer places that are in your local area, call 'em up and see if they are game to rent some of their internet connection to you. If you are doing most of your things overnight / off hours it shouldn't impact their day to day.
You shouldn't need to provide your own UPS in a real colo, so that would reduce your footprint a bit. You may need to do a shelf for the RPi's and small stuff however, along with your own PDU to power them. If your UPS has a load monitoring feature you should see what the total draw is on average and max usage so you can provide those details. You will want to know if you can live within a 1kW envelop or 2kW etc because that is what the power and cooling needs are for your setup. If you do go with a non-standard colo environment the power usage can be more important because you don't want 2kW of servers sitting in a sealed closet over the summer weekends without any building HVAC running.
 
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Alfa147x

Member
Feb 7, 2014
139
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Talk to he can do colo in Staten Island.
Hey funky - feel free to remove the email as I've sent him a note

For 300-500/mo you probably are going to have better luck sharing a space with someone else who has a mostly empty cabinet, or swing a deal with someone who has some office space nearby.
I don't know of anything that inexpensive except for shared space colo, where your stuff is racked up in open racks along with others. Access is frequently limited and supervised in those situations - or you hope it is so people don't "accidentally" mess with your servers.

You may want to start local and look for places like design firms or smaller computer places that are in your local area, call 'em up and see if they are game to rent some of their internet connection to you. If you are doing most of your things overnight / off hours it shouldn't impact their day to day.
You shouldn't need to provide your own UPS in a real colo, so that would reduce your footprint a bit. You may need to do a shelf for the RPi's and small stuff however, along with your own PDU to power them. If your UPS has a load monitoring feature you should see what the total draw is on average and max usage so you can provide those details. You will want to know if you can live within a 1kW envelop or 2kW etc because that is what the power and cooling needs are for your setup. If you do go with a non-standard colo environment the power usage can be more important because you don't want 2kW of servers sitting in a sealed closet over the summer weekends without any building HVAC running.

Amazing help. I'll keep all of this in mind as I reach out to folks. Trying to narrow down my estimated power consumption.