SiteGround has recently announced the launch of their fourth data center location in London, UK. This is the second data center location in Europe, with the Amsterdam location being launched in April 2012.
At the current time, only shared hosting and cloud hosting plans are available at the new London data center. However, it is expected that dedicated servers will be available in due course.
For those with customers based in the UK, the new data center should provide increased connectivity, and a small increase in response times. That being said, the existing Amsterdam location has a direct connection to the UK Network, and as such is still an excellent location for the UK and Europe.
A Look at the New UK data center
In a change for SiteGround, they have chosen SoftLayer (IBM) as their data center partner for London. This is most likely due to their usual provider, SingleHop, not having a data center in the UK. For those unaware, SoftLayer is the "Gold Standard" of data center companies, but that comes at a cost. Their data center is significantly more expensive than many of their counterparts, but they do offer many excellent automated features (API). They are well renowned for their uptime and response times, and excellent data network.
The data center is located in Chessington, South West London, and is run by Digital Realty. Surprisingly, it was until 2012 a shipping warehouse before the conversion took place. As you will see from the image below, it looks pretty damn cool:
Each SoftLayer data center uses the same standardized Pod Design, with the same specifications. This allows each one to support up to 5,000 servers optimized for space, power, network, personnel, and internal infrastructure. Each data center is staffed 24/7 so that any issues can be trouble shooted quickly in case the automated management system is unable to deal with the issue.
You can get a glimpse of the inside of the data center in the photo below:
How to Choose the UK Server Location
If you are a new customer, it is very easy to choose the new London Server Location at SiteGround during the sign-up process. You will see during Step 3 (see here for full walk-through & 60 percent off your first invoice) that you have the option to choose from one of the following server locations:
- London, UK
- Amsterdam, NL
- Chicago, US
- Singapore, SG
You can see this more clearly in the screenshot below:
Existing Customers wishing to transfer from another Data Center location
For existing customers who want to move their website from their current location (i.e. Amsterdam), the process is very simple, but comes at a small additional cost:
- Log in to your account area
- Select "Add Services" in the top menu
- At the bottom of the page you will see the option to move data center as shown in the screenshot below:
- Choose the account you wish to transfer, and your chosen data center. You will see that a charge of $30 \ £20 will be made to your account to do so. Please see the screenshot below: