Steadfast Blog

Chicago, IL (PRESS RELEASE) June 10, 2010 – Steadfast Networks, a leading Chicago based data center and dedicated server hosting provider, announced today its acquisition of VPSSpeed, a VPS hosting company with a significant track record in providing superior customer service. Acquisition of VPSSpeed allows Steadfast Networks to continue its growth in the VPS hosting market.

“VPSSpeed has a proven track record of providing excellent customer service and innovative VPS hosting and dedicated server hosting services to customers around the world,” says Karl Zimmerman, CEO of Steadfast Networks. “VPSSpeed was one of the first VPS providers to offer 100Mbit/s unmetered VPS hosting along with free Installatron and a custom VPS hosting control panel.”

VPSSpeed customers will continue to receive the high level of service they have been accustomed to at VPSSpeed. All accounts will be hosted on high end servers with RAID arrays in one of Steadfast Network’s fully redundant, self-managed network and data centers. Customer accounts will be hosted on the same OpenVZ, an open-source, container-based virtualization platform for Linux. And all applications will still work the same way.

“The only difference from this point forward is all VPSSpeed customers will be hosted on Steadfast Networks infrastructure as we will be offering VPSSpeed services out of our Chicago, IL and Manhattan, NY data centers,” said Zimmerman. “VPSSpeed customers will have direct access to a team of VPS hosting solutions experts in our fully redundant data centers 24-7-365.”

VPSSpeed shares Steadfast Networks’ commitment to energy efficiency. By consuming less power with low-energy processors and components, VPSSpeed and Steadfast Networks run highly efficient data centers with lower operating costs. The lower operational costs is one reason Steadfast Networks offers more competitive pricing for its VPS hosting plans and dedicated server hosting plans.

“VPS hosting and dedicated server hosting performance rely on quality IT infrastructure and expert IT support and staff, and VPSSpeed shares our commitment to creating an ideal data transfer environment for our customers,” said Zimmerman. “At Steadfast Networks we are pleased to welcome VPSSpeed to our team and offer reliable VPS hosting and dedicated server hosting.”

Steadfast Networks operates its own redundant network and data centers in Chicago and New York with 24-7-365 on-site staff. Because of this existing infrastructure, customer accounts will be migrated to Steadfast Networks Chicago and New York data centers. Customers based in Dallas will be moved to Chicago, while customers in Pennsylvania will be moved to New York. Steadfast Networks will begin migrating VPSSpeed customers in June. For more information about Steadfast Networks and VPSSpeed hosting solutions, visit steadfast.net.

About VPSSpeed

VPSSpeed was established in 2004 and quickly became a leading VPS hosting and dedicated server hosting company. VPSSpeed provides hosting services in Dallas, TX (Dallas Infomart) and Scranton, PA. These east coast and central locations offer excellent connectivity speeds across the world. Both data center locations provide multiple redundant network connections provided by multiple uplink providers. VPSSpeed’s network transit providers include Internap, Level3, Global Crossing, AboveNet, Cogent, Frontier, BTN / PCCW and XO. In 2009, VPSSpeed became one of the first VPS providers to offer 100Mbit/s unmetered VPS hosting. In early 2010, VPSSpeed launched free Installatron services along with an innovative, brand new VPS control panel.

To learn more about VPSSpeed, visit http://www.vpsspeed.com.

About Steadfast Networks

Established in 1998, Chicago based hosting company Steadfast Networks, delivers high quality, powerful servers through reliable dedicated server hosting, colocation server hosting, virtual private servers, shared web hosting, and dedicated game server hosting. Steadfast's award-winning services and dedicated support staff help customers from all over the world 24/7/365. Customers can choose basic hosting or a customized, fully managed dedicated server hosting solution.

To learn more about Steadfast Networks, visit http://www.steadfast.net.

Media Contact:
Karl Zimmerman
Steadfast Networks
312-602-2689
karl [at] steadfast.net

Now that we're sold out of the Atom 330's and have had enough time to test the Atom D510 systems, they're now our standard Atom offering. This will provide our customers with a greener and more efficient solution, with improved performance and features, at the same $99.95 a month price. With the Atom D510, all of the new systems we purchase now come with IPMI. IPMI gives you complete control of your systems, as if you were local to the system. It allows you to use remote/virtual media, reboot the system, view the boot-up process, run manual fsck, boot into a different kernel if your current kernel is freezing up, etc.

We can absorb the added cost of IPMI at this price point because of the significant power usage reduction in the new platform. Even though performance is roughly 5% better than the old line of Atoms, the power usage is cut nearly in half. The new Atoms allow us to run servers at full load while only using ~35 watts of power, making these an extremely "green" solution.

You can order these new Atom servers for only $99.95 a month here: http://steadfast.net/services/dedicated.basic.php

The interior of our new data center at 725 S Wells is now complete. We have some external things to complete yet, chiller and generator turn-up/testing, UPS testing, finishing the redundant dark fiber links, etc. The plan is to be live June 1 and we will, of course, be getting the network equipment and offices setup before then.

You can see some of the base details for the space, as well as how far we've come on this project, by looking at the initial in-depth report and pictures: http://steadfast.net/blog/index.php/2009/10/29/new-data-center-construction-update-october-29

I have a couple notes as well.
1) This has been complete for about a week and a half now, hence the reason there have been no construction updates.

2) We could not take pictures in the UPS room or the mechanical room yet as the epoxy on the floors is still drying, we'll hopefully have those soon.

3) We do not yet have pictures of the roof, as metal work is still being done, making it a bit unsafe.

Other than that, here are the pictures (click to see a larger version), and if you have any questions, certainly feel free to ask!

This first picture is of the kitchen area of the break room, complete with microwave, dishwasher, refrigerator, sink and cabinets.

Here is a view from the other side of the break area, you can see the kitchen area to the back left.

This is our new office space on the 8th floor. You can see the nice big windows, to let in a lot of natural light and in the back are the stairs up to the raised floor data center.

Then here is a view the other way, with the conference room door along the back wall and the door to the "man trap" to the right of that, with a window looking into the data center next to that.

Now, to the exciting stuff, the data center, though we'll start with the IDF room, where all the cross connects and connections to other floors/carriers will be, along with our core networking equipment.

OK, now here is the open data center floor, "man trap" and entry ramp are to the left. You can see the basket rack and busway mounted above. The cold aisle will of course be where the perforated tiles are, and in the hot aisles there are vents in the drop ceiling to pull the hot air back to the HVAC units.

Talking about HVAC units, here are the guts of one of the 4 70 ton HVAC units. To note, this cooling is also supplemented by an air side economizer to pull in cool outside air when possible, improving overall performance and efficiency.

Here is a view of the wall you can't see from the first picture. You can see one of the three PDU units that is feeding the busway and one of the humidification units. As you can see, the cabling/wiring is done through the floors, walls, and ceilings, to keep the data center itself extremely neat and clean.

Those are just a handful of the pictures. You can browse through the rest of the pictures here: http://steadfast.net/images/725wells/complete/

Again, if you have any questions regarding the facility itself, availability, etc. please contact us!

Today, one of my favorite industry sites, Data Center Knowledge, came out with a list of the 10 largest data centers in the world. I found two things very interesting about this:

350 E Cermak Rd, Chicago, IL1) 350 E Cermak, our primary data center facility and our "home" since 2003, is #1 on the list. 1.1 million sq. ft. dedicated to data center and data center support infrastructure is enough to be the largest data center in the world, and we're proud to be a part of it, even if we only make up 20,000 sq. ft. of it. This shows the advantages we have with our location, with easy access to over 100 networks that occupy hundreds of thousands of sq. ft. of data center space, all with a simple cross connect.

2) The list is extremely Chicago-centric, proving that Chicago is a perfect location for data centers. 3 of the 10 largest data centers in the world are in the Chicago metro area, 350 E Cermak (#1), Microsoft's Container Data Center (#5) and DuPont Fabros' facility in Elk Grove Village (#8). No other city in the world even has 2 facilities on the list and there are no facilities on the list in California, New York, New Jersey, London, or Amsterdam. You can then see how Chicago has become one of the most important cities in the world as far as data centers and network connectivity, having grown to be a crossroads of the Internet.

This makes it easy to see the advantages we can provide with our location, being in the largest facility in one of the greatest Internet hubs in the world.  Bigger is better and provides our customers with the scale they need to compete. We have significant access to national networks, international networks and financial networks, such as CME and ICE. The service we offer is a significant advantage of our services, but our location in Chicago, specifically 350 E Cermak Rd, is also 2nd to none.

if you want to be located inside this amazing facility please contact us about dedicated servers or data center colocation out of this amazing facility!

Things are progressing nicely. The structural steel for the roof mounts for the generator and chiller is being fabricated off-site, thus you can't see it here, but progress is being made. The other major change is that a lot of the UPS gear is now in place, and it is basically just finishing work inside the data center space.

General Building:
Plumbing: New bldg domestic water riser from Basement to 8th Floor installation in-progress.
A/C condenser relocation: Condenser lines removed from future ComEd Vault.

Basement Construction Progress Summary:
Boiler Room: Building stored items primarily removed.
Future Elec Room: Hogan Ground box installation in-progress

6th Floor Construction Progress Summary:
Doors/Windows: Awaiting man doors.
Walls: Completed.
Finishes: Painting complete on walls
Electrical: Further UPS Parallel board conduit installation in-progress. Three
UPS/Battery groups installed. PDU wire pulls to 8th floor complete. Wire pulls to DPRA at penthouse from 6th floor in-progress
Mechanical (Chilled water): Chiller lines complete, awaiting CRAH 5, insulation complete.
Mechanical (Vent): Room exhaust vents and supply vent near complete

7th Floor Construction Progress Summary:
Tennant: Moved misc. equipment into 7th floor storage area.
Floors: Complete. Tile trim req. at suite door.
Voice/Data Security: Wiring of card readers and elec. Strikes in-progress.
Mechanical (Chilled water): Completed.

8th Floor Construction Progress Summary:
Walls: Room walls complete. 8th floor stair walls complete awaiting paint.
Doors/Windows: Door complete.
Floors: Ceramic tile install in-progress at Toilets.
Ceilings: Ceiling tile installation in-progress in Office, Data Room and Toilets
Voice/Data Security: Wire cable tray install in-progress in Data Center, Security
& voice/data cable pull in-progress., Wiring of elec strikes in-progress
Electrical: PDU grounding complete, leak detection at CHRAH units complete.
Plumbing: Awaiting fixtures
Fire Alarm: Fire alarm control panel installed, wiring in-progress.
Mechanical (Chilled water): Piping near complete. Refrigeration piping primarily
complete.
Mechanical (Vent): Duct complete. Awaiting AHU-A install.
Sprinklers: Total Pac piping complete, sprinkler heads complete.
Finishes: Primer and first coat paint complete.
Freight Elevator: Awaiting painting.
Miscellaneous: Window screens replaced
Roof Construction Progress Summary:
Exterior: CU1 & CU2 piping and electric near complete.
Interior: Elec room door completed.
Elec: Conductor pull to DPRA from 6th floor in-progress

And the pictures: http://steadfast.net/images/april7progress.pdf

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