Moving data closer to home

01 April 2018

Based in the village of Albury near Guildford, Marotori was established just over 16 years ago to design websites. It quickly found a demand among its clients for web hosting and this required a lot of support.

At first, the company used a data centre in Maidenhead. Maratori director Rob Thomson says: “By moving over to the cloud the biggest risks to our business, such as having a hard disk fail, have been removed.”

However, Thomson determined that at a distance of 37 miles, Maidenhead was simply too far away. 

He then came across David Barker, the founder and technical director of data centre company 4D. It was founded in 1999, originally as a domain registration and hosting business, but in 2007, Barkerestablished the company’s first data centre, near West Byfleet in Surrey. This was followed by another in Maidstone and, in October 2016, 4D bought a BT data centre (pictured) in Crawley, West Sussex.

Transferring to 4D means that Maratori saves up to 25 minutes in travelling time. Thomson says although the business was relatively new to the market, moving to a better location was critical to its operations and decided that it was therefore worth it.

“One of the biggest challenges we’ve faced over the years as a business has been with the hardware,” he says. “It’s a tough call to make as there’s a lot of profit to be made in providing the hardware to customers as well as the hosting services, but it requires a substantial investment.”

Thomson says everything with the migration went perfectly. The team rolled out the servers needed very quickly, and although they came across a “very odd” network issue they were able to locate some obscure Ethernet card that was causing the problem and debugged it within a few hours. They also enabled Maratori to consolidate its rack equipment down from three full racks to just over one. 

“We’re a small business, but from our clients’ perspective it’s important that we are within the London area,” says Thomson. “By working with 4D and utilising their services fully, I can provide that level of service to our clients while being location independent myself and simply knowing that any hardware problems are just sorted.”