On 9/11/14, RACK59’s Dusty Burchfield was interviewed by SEO Tag Cloud in what turned out to be an EPIC interview as Dusty broke the news of the first ever Internet exchange point for the state of Oklahoma. You can find that conversation starting at 8:25 of the interview. Underneath the video, please find the complete transcript for the interview. Enjoy!
Chase Turner: Hello. Chase Turner here with seotagcloud.com and today I’m interviewing Dusty Burchfield with RACK59 Data center in Oklahoma City. Dusty, how are you doing today?
Dusty Burchfield: Great. Can’t complain. Thanks for having me.
CT: Very cool. Now, the reason I wanted to interview Dusty is because I’ve known him for quite some time. I’ve known about his involvement with the RACK59 Data center there. And we were talking the other day, and he was telling me about these new additions that RACK59 had just made, and I was so blown away by them that I immediately asked him if he would come on and do an interview with us because I think people need to know about this. Now, we will be getting into those additions very shortly. But first, Dusty, can you just tell us a little bit about RACK59, the background, how it started, all that shnazz.
DB: Absolutely. A pleasure to do so. RACK59 began in 2009. It is located strategically in the former Lucent Technologies AT&T manufacturing facility. And they ran their international data center headquarters out of this facility. And, so, we’ve taken a lot of the assets that were in place and brought them to the 21st Century and so RACK59 was born. And we’ve had a very particular direction. We’re a true co-location data center. So, we focus on providing the most redundant power, space, and bandwidth possible to our customers at the cheapest price.
CT: Now, anytime that I talk with people with about data centers, one of the first things that always comes up is uptime. And I know on the homepage of your website you have a picture that says, “Always On.” Explain what that means exactly.
DB: Sure. Whenever you’re in a data center, we’re in the business of making sure that people’s data is always available. So, RACK59 customers have never lost power. They have never experienced a power bump because of our sincere redundancy of the power in a 2M fashion. It’s from the — what we call from the grid all the way to the rack and we do that with multiple generators, and UPSs, and a litany of power devices. And the second is the connectivity, the bandwidth. And we’ve spent the money and the infrastructure, put it in place to make sure that when we hand you a connection for your bandwidth that it’s always going to be available and it’s always on.
DB: Always. That’s right.
CT: Very nice. Uptime, obviously, very important. The next thing I wanted to talk about is security. Obviously, this is precious data to companies. Tell us about the security that RACK59 offers.
DB: Yeah. Security, we have to — because of some of our customers already, we have to comply with HIPAA and PCI compliancy rules so that our customers in turn can be compliant with the auditors that are coming in. We facilitate that through what’s called a SSAE16 Audit. That’s just the audit for data centers is all that means. And it confirms that the perimeter fence that we have, and the internal biometric security, proximity cards, the facial recognition that we use, the locked racks and cages confirms that the security that we say we have we actually do have and utilize on a daily basis. We make sure that that information is only accessible by the people it’s supposed to be and that our customers’ auditors can do their job easily when they come to RACK59.
CT: That’s really cool. Now, I didn’t know all of that. But, one of my favorite features — I’ve been to the facility. I’ve seen it. It’s beautiful. It’s amazing. And one of my favorite features though is the facial recognition software. I think that’s pretty cool. Can you talk a little bit about that?
DB: Sure. So, when you’re a customer, and you come to the data center, and you want to access your equipment, you relinquish a photo ID, we check an access list to make sure that you’re on the list and you still have access. And, then, we sign you in and we take you, and our employees actually stand in front of this device and it literally like reads the contours of your face and makes sure that the person who’s accessing should be able to get through the first level of what we call our mantrap. And then after that, the employee will help badge through a proximity card reader that’ll actually grant you access to the raised floor. So, it’s a great device. It allows us, if we have an employee we need to fire, or a change of staff, or whatever, it makes it easy for just us to remove them and they can no longer gain access.
CT: That is my favorite feature. I think that’s so cool. I love that. Okay. Next, I want to talk about the service that you guys offer. I know you said that your pure colocation. But, you also can have a private data center inside your data center, workplace recovery, connectivity… Can you please just kind of briefly go over those services in a little bit more detail for us?
DB: Yeah. So, the data centers of today for enterprise-style customers, they’re looking more for what we call a true private data center. So, they’ll be utilizing shared resources like our generators, and chillers, and UPSs, but they’ll have their own dedicated area. And that can be done two ways. We can do it with true walled-off from floor to ceiling or we can do it with a caged environment. With that, that adds an additional level of security to where we can put proximity card readers to where only that customer can even physically have access anywhere close to the actual racks. So, a lot of customers, especially the larger customers, are going that way because it just makes their auditing process easier and then they have a better sense of security. And that’s just part of what we provide.
Additionally, we do traditional shared colocation space. So, you could have one rack with a lock on it sitting next to another rack and those are two different customers. And they’re individually keyed so one customer can’t get into the other. But, they’re in a more shared, traditional space and that there’s some cost savings involved there.
Once companies have gotten their data backed up, have a production site, a disaster recovery site, the next thing they need to think about is where their people are going to go. If their building goes away, if there’s a flood, if there’s — whatever type of disaster there is, extended power outage, where are their people going to go? And we actually have a business continuity center where we can house those employees, and be able to reach that data that’s on our floor or on some other data centers across the world, and be able to still continue operations and not become subject to many of the companies who never actually make it back from a disaster scenario.
CT: Yeah. That last part, I’ve never even — I didn’t even know those things existed until I’d been out to the facility and seen how everything was already set up just ready in case something happened like that. And, frankly, I don’t know anybody else in Oklahoma City that has those capabilities. So, that’s also something to see when you go to RACK59 facilities. Lastly, let’s talk about this thing that I kind of opened the video with. It’s way over my head, so I’m going to let you talk about it. But, it’s the Internet Exchange Point. Talk about that and the impact it’s going to have in Oklahoma.
DB: Sure. So, I’ll try to stay high level because I think it’s important for people to understand what it does without getting overly technical. But, essentially, RACK59 is going to house the only Internet Exchange Point in the entire state of Oklahoma. What this allows us to do is peer directly with the largest Internet service providers in the world and the Content Delivery Networks all over the globe. And what is an ISP, an internet service provider? Well, that’s companies like AT&T and Cox Communications, Level 3, XO, Hurricane Electric, some of these companies that you may have heard of. Well, what we can do is we can connect from our facility via a transparent layer 2 device and give you direct connectivity where you can buy bandwidth from any of those providers from anyplace in the United States and even in Europe. And, then, what’s even more exciting is the ability to hook into the Content Delivery Networks, or the CDNs. These are companies like Facebook, and Twitter, and LinkedIn, and Netflix, Google, Amazon, AWS, Akamai, all of these organizations that companies want to offload some of their bandwidth and peer directly. What does that do? It decreases latency, increases efficiency, and just provides some tremendous opportunities for companies to leverage the network that they already have in place. So, we are, will be, will be the only Internet Exchange Point in Oklahoma and that is housed exclusively at RACK59.
CT: Man, that is a lot to take in. [laugh] I mean you start throwing names out, Amazon and Netflix and Google, and we’re in Oklahoma City. So, that’s really cool and it’s even better that RACK59 is the only data center in the whole state of Oklahoma with that type of access to these things. So…
DB: Well, people are surprised. I mean people are truly surprised. They say, “Well, you’re like Infomart in Dallas” or “You’re like the connectivity that you can find in Miami, or Chicago, or Denver.” And I say, “Yeah. Exactly. That’s exactly what we’ve done because we spent the time to put the money up and do the engineering for the fiber to be able to make this happen.” We’ve made some great opportunities for companies in Oklahoma. And just if I might add at the end real quick, we have some pretty amazing deals going on right now so that people can actually take advantage of our IXP and all of the other resources that we have here at RACK59, and you can check those out at rack59.com/specials.
CT: Okay. That’s rack59.com/specials to check everything Dusty’s got going on there. And then, Dusty, somebody who watches this, wants to do what I did, come out, take a look at the facility, meet you, do the whole walk through, how do they go about that?
DB: Very simple. If you want, you can just give us a call, 405-443-3667, or go online. Just fill out the contact form. We’ll get in touch with you and get back to you the day of.
CT: Alright, Dusty. Appreciate your time today. Very exciting interview, very cool techie stuff. Thanks for your time and we’ll be talking to you soon. Have a good day.
DB: Thanks, Chase.