What is data centre interconnection?

Data centre interconnection is where two or more data centres are linked together to share resources. Specifically, it involves IT traffic exchange points that enable private connections between two entities. Data centre interconnection is primarily used to support day-to-day operations, such as management of resources and load balancing functions, alongside business continuity and disaster recovery.


Why is data centre interconnection relevant?

Data centre interconnection is especially popular with businesses today due to access to multiple connectivity partners, which gives them the opportunity to expand their customer bases and grow operations. This can include global internet exchanges, internet service providers and major mobile, cloud, network and content providers. It’s vital for every industry today due to the increased need for low latency, security and reliability. Data centre interconnectivity can play a key role in global connectivity by hosting the most prominent internet hubs around the world.


Types of data centre interconnection

The different types of data centre interconnection include the following:

  • Cross-connectThis is where physical cables connect to a network within a data centre. This for example could be a colocation rack connected to a service provider, such as a cloud or network provider, telecom carrier or ISP. This is beneficial to businesses that want to avoid the latency or congestion issues which can arise from leveraging the public internet, while consistently high speeds and reliability are also features of this approach.


  • Blended IP – A blended IP allows organisations to partner with a colocation interconnection provider that has relationships with a range of ISPs and carriers. This gives businesses the benefit of optimal performance with reliable, high-bandwidth connectivity across a number of providers, with a platform in place for access to a number of public and private cloud organisations.


  • Inter-site – This type of interconnection connectivity is where communications are facilitated between campuses in the data centre network. It gives businesses the opportunity to access needed providers in an interconnection-dense colocation data centre, and helps to reduce any link failures, balance loads and eliminate any traffic congestion.


  • Peering exchange – Peering provides businesses with one-to-one connections between networks, allowing them to directly exchange traffic to reduce costs and increase efficiency. Peering also provides the opportunity for businesses to gain greater control of their network, while enabling an optimal end-user experience via both short and fast network routes.


Benefits of interconnection


The main benefits of data centre interconnection cover the following:
  • Access – For businesses that are selling services or products on a global level, access to multiple internet service providers provides the foundation for effective operations worldwide. Data centres with a wide range of connectivity options bring direct access to servers, which is crucial for resiliency when outages arise.


  • Convenience – Interconnection provides physical contact points between providers, servers and customers. Businesses benefit from working with a provider with a flexible interconnected data centre thanks to scaling capabilities, flexibility and access to data. Data interconnection allows for the seamless access to and transfer of data, and this gives room for businesses to grow as their operations expand.


  • Cost – Where businesses opt for a non-carrier-neutral environment, they are typically tied to one service option, which may be poor value financially. The ability to access multiple carrier options will give organisations the opportunity to access cost-effective services as they compete for business, as well as reduced risk due to greater choice.


  • Security – Data centre interconnectivity services are usually fortified with encryption and stringent rules on access to stored data, helping to protect against intrusions. Innovations in packet-optical networking equipment can also bring on-the-fly encryption capabilities to data as it travels over a data interconnection link. This is especially important for protecting financial transactions and other sensitive corporate data.


  • Performance – Interconnection provides high-performance global point-to-point connectivity, and strategically located data centres can better enhance performance levels. Data centre providers are now accommodating the movement of huge volumes of data, allowing for services to be delivered instantly.


  • Resources – With interconnection, organisations can access a range of connectivity partners, opening up countless resources and a wealth of business possibilities. Carrier-neutral capabilities provide the freedom for businesses to connect with who they wish, and predictable and scalable bandwidth gives businesses the opportunity to connect to leading public and private cloud service providers.


What to look for when choosing an interconnection solution

Whether a business needs to connect systems to local data centres or connect central services to international sites, they need to opt for an interconnection solution that provides high-performance interconnects and access to quality networks. However, without a strategic location, businesses will be unable to fully make the most of these capabilities. Internet exchange points join at different locations, meaning data centre interconnectivity offerings can differ depending on where a provider is located.

Telehouse’s London Docklands campus hosts the London Internet Exchange (LINX), one of the world’s leading internet exchanges, with other key exchanges elsewhere in Europe, Asia and the USA. The Telehouse Carrier-Interconnect is one the most highly connected ecosystems in the world. Carrier-neutral data centres and world-class data interconnection services located at the London Docklands campus bring more than 800 connectivity partners together for a range of business possibilities. This includes Tier 1 and Tier 2 carriers, major internet service providers, application service providers and cloud service providers.

Businesses should also consider the expertise of their data centre provider in enabling them to access interconnection services. Dedicated teams of on-site engineers can connect private networks to ecosystems using a wide range of full cabling options. With data centre cross-connects, businesses also need to be aware of the different cabling options, such as CAT6, coaxial cable and single mode/multi mode fibre. 


Why businesses choose Telehouse for interconnection

Telehouse makes connections that businesses can rely on. We adhere to more than 300 standards for facility specification and service operation. We provide 24/7 technical and engineering support and security to protect the mission-critical data of our customers, while maintaining a high stand of service and reliability. We also guarantee an SLA of up to 99.999% globally for power availability. See our dedicated interconnection page for more information.