Off to a Great Start in 2023
Verne Global Finland Attends PTC, Joins the Greener Data Directory and Launches New Sustainability Guide.
Verne Global Finland had a wonderful time at PTC ‘23 in beautiful Honolulu, Hawaii, beginning of January. While the distance from Helsinki to Hawaii is nearly 7,000 miles, the conference was absolutely worth the lengthy trip for so many reasons. At the event, Verne Global Finland had the chance to catch up on the latest trends in the digital infrastructure industry, and we enjoyed meeting with colleagues, old friends and new friends in the warm island air. It was wonderful to talk about our great accomplishments in 2022 and to share some of the big things we are looking forward to in 2023 as we move forward as Verne Global under the Digital 9 umbrella of sustainable, innovation-focused companies.
Sharing Our Story at PTC
Our very own Kim Gunnelius, founder and CCO of Verne Global Finland, sat down with Jaymie Scotto & Associates (JSA) to share some highlights of the exciting things happening at Verne Global Finland, including our continued, unwavering focus on sustainability.
Greener Data Directory
We are also proud to share that you can now find us in JSA’s Greener Data Directory, an online rolodex of sustainability-minded companies, including technologists and innovators in or serving the digital infrastructure industry.. Now, you can find us listed among the most environmentally focused tech companies in the world dedicated to getting to net carbon zero, quickly and globally. To learn more about the Greener Data Movement and to purchase a copy of Greener Data, a best-selling book co-written by Kim Gunnelius, visit greenerdata.net.
New Comprehensive Guide: The Journey to Climate Neutral
Last, but definitely not least, we are thrilled to share the launch of our new comprehensive e-book, The Journey to Climate Neutral: A Guide to Data Center Sustainability.
This robust resource was created to help organizations in the digital infrastructure industry move further and faster down the road to becoming carbon neutral. We explore how to make realistic decisions on resourcing and develop an environmentally focused strategy. Plus, gain a clear understanding of how to look beyond your data center’s carbon footprint.
As an industry, we have the potential to make significant progress in the global effort to battle climate change, and this guide serves as an invaluable resource to learn how to make changes now to secure a more sustainable future. Become an agent of change for your own business, customers and the planet — and find out how to stand out as a leader in sustainability. For more information about Verne Global Finland’s solutions and upcoming initiatives, do not hesitate to contact us. In the meantime, we look forward to sharing more updates with you in the months ahead!
From New Markets to a New Name: Verne Global Finland’s End-of-Year Recap
4 Big Things that Have Made 2022 Our Best Year Yet
Originally published in ficolo.com in 2022.
As 2022 comes to a close, we have a lot to reflect upon. Our team has made incredible achievements this year, bringing our company to new heights. From a new name to a best-selling book to branching out to reach new markets, let’s take a look at the things that made 2022 a year to remember.
1. New Family: Joining Forces with Like-Minded Companies
In 2022, our company joined the Digital 9 Infrastructure (D9) portfolio. Joining forces with D9 and its impressive family of sustainability-focused companies is helping us accelerate our global growth and fuel our progress toward carbon negativity. In fact, the company’s commitment to sustainability is reflected in its name, with “9“ representing the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 9 (“SDG9”): “Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation.” As the only third-party certified climate neutral, hyperscale-level data center company in the Nordics, Ficolo is a true leader in sustainability, making us an ideal company to support D9’s vision of a climate-resilient, digitally connected world.
2. New Markets: Hello, US Financial Services
This year, we are proud to expand into new markets, including the financial services industry in the U.S. where we have a major win! Having passed a stringent qualification and review, we provided and installed a solution that the customer is very happy with and particularly got great feedback for our flexibility and devotion. Whatever your goal, we have a way of making things simple, helping you to achieve a scalable solution that grows with your company.
3. New Book: We Have an Amazon Best Seller
Earth Day is an important day, but this year it was extra special as we launched Greener Data, our Amazon best-selling book, featuring our very own in-house sustainability champion, Kim Gunnelius, CCO and Co-founder of Verne Global Finland. The multi-author, groundbreaking book features the voices, stories and perspectives of the leaders of the data center and network infrastructure industry. It explores ways to drive real change to make the world a better place and reduce our carbon footprint — industry wide.
4. New Name: Ficolo Is Now Verne Global Finland
Our latest significant news is joining forces with Verne Global. Merging our brands with Verne Global we will bring a wealth of new opportunities to our domestic and global customers — and will accelerate our journey toward our goal of becoming carbon negative.
Both Ficolo and Verne Global are part of the D9 portfolio of critical digital infrastructure assets. Verne Global operates sustainable-powered facilities in Iceland and London. Through this strategic collaboration backed by D9, Ficolo and Verne Global will provide an expanded platform of connectivity across this emerging region. This pivotal partnership is set to provide hyperscalers and enterprises with expanded connectivity and efficient, innovative solutions to drive digital transformation throughout Europe. In addition, the newly expanded Verne Global team will focus on delivering industry-leading customer support. It is also rolling out consistent engineering design best practices to reduce the carbon footprint of customers and to optimize the performance of its operations across all five locations.
While Ficolo is now operating under the Verne Global brand, our customers can rest easy knowing the relationships we have built over the years and our innovative, sustainable service offerings will remain unchanged. In fact, customers now have the opportunity to benefit from a more robust portfolio of colocation and cloud computing solutions and will have access to more Northern European markets.
“This change is more than a new name. It’s an exciting journey for our company,” says Kim Gunnelius. “As we combine our innovative spirit, passion for the environment and data center operational expertise with that of Verne Global, we will continue to strengthen our position as an agent of change across the global digital infrastructure industry, empowering hyperscale growth and moving our sustainability efforts forward to make the world a greener place.”
It’s been a stellar year, and one thing is clear – It would not have been possible without the support of our amazing customers and partners.
Our humble thank you for the past year — it is a pleasure to continue to provide you with sustainable, efficient cloud services and colocation solutions!
A Unified Focus on Clean Connectivity
D9 and Ficolo: Learn why Ficolo is a perfect fit to join the D9 portfolio and how the deal will accelerate progress toward carbon negativity.
The article was originally published in ficolo.com in June 2022.
A few months ago, we shared the exciting news that Ficolo agreed to sell its shares to UK-based Digital 9 Infrastructure plc (D9). As the deal moves forward, what does the future hold for D9 and Ficolo? For starters, a bright — and environmentally responsible — path toward a more sustainable planet with a unified focus on clean connectivity.
With an unwavering focus on enabling sustainable global connectivity, D9 and Ficolo will join forces to help accelerate global connectivity and fuel the progress toward carbon negativity. Ficolo customers will also continue to receive the exceptional customized cloud and colocation services they have come to expect with the added advantage of access to even more services leveraging D9’s best-in-class portfolio of companies. This includes Verne Global in Iceland, a company that exploits the country’s abundant green energy, and Volta, a central London green data center.
D9’s Dedication to Sustainable Digital Connectivity
D9 is helping to bring people closer together by meeting the global demand for improved speed, reliability, and accessibility of data. The company invests in critical digital infrastructure, including subsea cables and data centers, to promote digital connectivity and close the digital divide worldwide. At the core of every investment and every business decision D9 makes is a steadfast commitment to sustainability and environmentally responsible practices.
In fact, the company’s commitment to sustainability is reflected in their name, with “9“ representing the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 9 (“SDG9”): “Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation.” SDG9 encourages nations and organizations to bridge the global digital divide by increasing access to information and communications technology, while at the same time, decarbonizing digital Infrastructure energy usage. In other words, D9 is focused on accelerating economic growth, social development, and critical climate action.
Since their IPO in 2021, D9 has invested over £600m in digital infrastructure assets, including data center companies and subsea network service providers, to help fulfill their mission. As such, they seek to only acquire and partner with companies, like Ficolo, that share their vision for a sustainable future and meet strict environmental, social, and governance criteria.
The Important Role of Data Centers
D9 understands the powerful role digital infrastructure plays in advancing global connectivity, and data centers are an essential piece to the digital infrastructure puzzle. From websites to videos to music to critical corporate information, data centers house the data businesses and consumers generate and use every single minute of every day.
Currently, data centers consume an enormous amount of power, contributing 2% of the world’s CO2 emissions. As the demand for cloud services soars and the vast amount of data generated across the world continues to grow, employing data centers that operate efficiently and sustainably is crucial. And that is why Ficolo is a perfect addition to the D9 portfolio.
Ficolo and D9 – A Perfect Fit
As the only third-party certified climate neutral, hyperscale-level data center company in the Nordics, Ficolo is a true leader in sustainability, making us an ideal company to support D9’s vision of a climate-resilient, digitally connected world. Here’s why:
- We utilize 100% renewable energy in all data centers, based on wind and solar power.
- Thanks to the cool Nordic environment, we leverage free natural cooling with the ability to distribute waste heat to the district heating grid.
- sed on our initiatives that support the long-term vision of low carbon and sustainability, we are the first data center company in the Nordics to receive the highest Dark Green rating from Cicero, the Norwegian climate research institute.
- We achieved Climate Neutral Company certification, awarded by Swiss carbon finance consultancy South Pole, signifying our compliance with the international PAS 2060 standard developed to certify carbon-neutral operations.
- We are relentless in our commitment to becoming climate negative, continuing to explore green technologies and ways to improve efficiency.
With the support of D9 and its impressive portfolio of companies, Ficolo will have the opportunity to further improve operations, achieve our goal to be carbon negative, and drive sustainable global connectivity solutions for the future.
To learn more about D9 and their purpose-driven investments, visit their website.
Is HCI Cloud The Right Choice For You?
Originally published in ficolo.com in 2021.
Does your current infrastructure hold you back? Do you need to lower costs, better management or maybe you want an environment that is more scalable? Then hyperconverged infrastructure or HCI Cloud might be the right choice for you.
Traditional data center architecture is three-tiered: There’s separate computing, storage and networking equipment, each requiring their own expertise for operation and management. This type of architecture can be expensive to build and operate as each part of the infrastructure has to be bought and managed separately.
The lack of agility and the time it takes to deploy the architecture often drives organizations to public cloud services which are easy and fast to deploy. But while organizations benefits from the ease-of-use of public cloud, they also have to deal with having less control, higher costs and the lack of enterprise-level security.
But traditional infrastructure and public cloud aren’t the only options available for organizations. Modern hardware can converge the entire infrastructure and run it all on x86-based servers with internal SSD drives. This type of infrastructure is called hyperconverged infrastructure, or HCI for short.
Why HCI Cloud:
Basically, HCI offers higher agility and lower costs than traditional infrastructure without the negatives of public cloud. Capital expenses are lowered, as all you need to procure is x86 servers instead of storage arrays, storage controllers, or fiber-channel networking. And thanks to everything happening in the servers, the operations become much simpler and require less time and expertise.
There are also business benefits. HCI hardware can be up and running even in a few hours and workloads can be spun up in a matter of minutes. There is no need for complicated constructs like LUNs and volumes because the configuration is based on policies aligned with applications. And scalability is not an issue as drives and servers can be added without disruptions – without a lot of configuration or capital expenses.
HCI Cloud Benefits:
- Simplified management
- Easy deployments
- Simple scalability and upgradability
- Increased flexibility and reliability
- Optimized cost structure
HCI offers the flexible scalability of public cloud with the manageability and security of private cloud, combining the best of both worlds. It is a good option for smaller scale deployment – for bigger deployments HCI can lead to sub-optimized system. When the scale of the operation is large enough, it may be better to have compute and storage segregated. HCI is also most well suited for organizations who don’t have massive amounts of rarely accessed data but require that data is retrieved rapidly and saved within the HCI system.
Your chosen architecture should always be driven by the business requirements: some businesses require a unique platform and other times a more generic platform is all that is needed. Ficolo is happy to help you choose the cloud platform to build your business. Contact us and let’s discuss what your cloud should look like.
How to ensure the security of cloud services?
Originally published in ficolo.com in 2021.
The use of cloud services has increased rapidly and it might be good for many organizations to stop and consider how they have implemented data security in their systems. When many new services are deployed consecutively in short period of time, the security can easily become an afterthought. Processes have to change as cloud services require different solutions compared to more traditional application security. It also requires more up-to-date specialist know-how.
It is easy to think that all responsibility of data security would be left on the shoulders of the service providers – unfortunately this is not the case as most of the responsibility is still on the user of the service. When the services are procured, the user has to consider what kind of data is moved into the cloud and how critical the data is. The same risks that affect other services also have to be considered with the cloud services. Additionally, there are differences in data security between different cloud models.
Criteria for Assessing the Information Security of Cloud Services
Criteria for Assessing the Information Security of Cloud Services (PiTuKri) is a guidance document published by Traficom’s Cyber Security Centre for assessing the security of cloud services. It defines the different types of data and provides recommendations on the solutions required for data with different security classifications. Different types of information present different risks and require different levels of protection.
From a security perspective, the level of assurance that can be obtained about the ability and reliability of the service provider is crucial. In situations where the service is provided by more than one organization, the risks should be assessed for all organizations involved in the provision of the service.
However, the purpose of the criteria is not to rank the different cloud services but to advise organizations on which service is sufficiently secure for each purpose. When dealing with confidential data, particular attention must be paid to the security of the cloud service.
Different Cloud Service Models
Cloud computing can be implemented in several different ways. A private cloud typically allows for a higher level of security than other cloud service delivery models. It allows reliable separation from other computing environments, user organizations and external actors. In comparing private cloud to public cloud services, the criteria states: “In the public cloud, data is subject to a wider attack surface than in the private cloud, including through other users of the service or external actors.” A hybrid cloud, which combines a private and a public cloud, can also be used as an implementation model. In this case, the private cloud running in the private cloud is complemented by services purchased from the public cloud.
Using PiTuKri provides companies with an important tool for evaluating their own cloud services and choosing which implementation model best suits their needs. Other frameworks and existing certificates can be used to assess compliance.
Ficolo certificates and services
Ficolo offers customers both fully dedicated and shared capacity, produced in Finland, and we offer public capacity from the public cloud. By taking control of these with the Ficolo Cloud Management Platform product, the customer can manage all the services in the different zones through a single console. Ficolo services are available from all our data centers – The Air in Helsinki, The Rock in Pori and The Deck in Tampere.
Ficolo’s cloud security service portfolio is designed to support cloud services and ensure service availability. The portfolio consists of comprehensive monitoring and maintenance services, network security services, backup and Anti-DDoS services and other methods to ensure the continuity and security of your cloud services. Our services help you to have a comprehensive, flexible, and manageable cloud solution that adapts to your security requirements and the capacity you use.
All our sites are audited by Kiwa Inspecta and we have been awarded both ISO 27001 (Information Security Management System) and ISO 22301 (Business Continuity Management System) certifications covering our entire business – our The Rock data center is also audited to meet Katakri IV level. Operational development is a key part of Ficolo’s approach, and we are actively working to improve our services and obtain new certifications.
We are happy to help if your company is considering cloud computing or if you need assistance in assessing the security of your cloud services. Contact us if you’d like to discuss about your cloud security needs.
Home for Clouds
The article was originally published in ficolo.com in 2016
More and more cloud services are housed in a colocation data center, states a recent report from Gartner. No surprise that also Ficolo data center is home for global cloud services. Ficolo provides software company Modultek with a SaaS – service environment which contains colocation, connectivity and data security services.
”Ficolo’s environment helps us provide high-quality, safe, cost effective cloud services. We trust their expertise and service capabilities,” says Janne Jansson, Modultek’s Business Director.
Modultek cloud service is designed to be used for product information management. Customers using the service have hundreds of thousands different product designations and the need to transfer large documents. These factors set certain demands to the cloud service and challenge the data center partner. Excellent usability plays an important role at all situations.
Colocation and cloud services are not choices between alternatives, quite the contrary, states the Gartner report. In an ever-changing world many companies see colocation as more viable, flexible and secure alternative opposed to investing capital for decades for building an own data center.
Components for cloud service
Ficolo offers the components for producing global, secure cloud services. As a part of new Cloud Delivery – concept Ficolo can offer DDoS Protection Services and strong authentication solution, which Modultek utilizes in its cloud service. “Ficolo was able to provide extremely advanced technologies for data security and the prevention of denial of service attacks,” Jansson says.
Ficolo aims to develop the Cloud Delivery concept further by expanding the service and product portfolio. The solutions for DDoS protection and strong authentication services have been implemented first as the role of data security plays a very important role when it comes to cloud services and secure data connections. These services are also components which complement perfectly the services of any colocation customers.
Synergy benefits worth of honey
The blog post was originally posted in ficolo.com in 2016.
Colocation data centers are multi-tenant environments in which tenants benefit from each other. Ficolo got recently new tenants to its data center area looking exactly these synergy effects.
They had some requirements of which Ficolo had no problems of fulfilling. These were for instance “flying” connections to the nearby area and economies of scale. They also hoped for privacy in terms of own dedicated area.
These requests are some of the usual benefits of colocation data center. We were able to meet their demands with no questions although the dedicated area is quite unusual. Although having a natural environment of Finnish bedrock, these tenants were actually looking for even greener grass. The flying connections they had of their own.
As one might already guess, the tenants in question are not regular customers. The flying connections and own area is dedicated to hundreds of thousands of honeybees.
A local bee farmer contacted Ficolo in search for a place. As Ficolo owns land around the tunnels, a suitable and natural place for the bees was quite easily found.
This is a truly an example how companies can really benefit from each other across the borders!
Three topics to think prior selecting data storage
This blog post was originally published in ficolo.com in 2016.
Data storage solutions are often complex and choosing one of many alternatives can be overwhelming. We listed three topics to consider thoroughly when selecting a data storage solution.
1) Own needs
Lack of capacity was named as the biggest challenge in current data storages according a survey conducted by TechTarger (October 2016). Bandwidth, poor performance and scalability became second issues causing grey hairs. With this in minds, it is worth to consider what the need for capacity is now but also in the future. Rarely the amount of data stored is static or decreasing, therefore scalability is one of the things to consider. As the capacity and performance requirements are on the rise, performance issues should not be left out of the consideration.
Budget can play an important role and even rule out some of the options. Acquisition price is however not the whole truth and should not be considered as the whole truth. In terms of price, another perspective offer to management is whether to buy storage as a service or utilize cloud storage.
3) Integration and migration
Before the choice consider also how integration and possible migration to existing solution is performed and whether some challenges are expected.
Wide selection available
It is easier to go through the various different alternatives when first taking few moments to ponder own needs, expectations and possible restrictions mirroring own criteria against the features available. Surely, there is no lack of alternatives. Next to traditional solutions have risen cloud storage and hyperconverged solutions in which server, storage and virtualization have been integrated. Cloud storage allows you benefit from scalability. Cloud storage offered at Ficolo as shared storage is a viable option to cut costs in investing in own infrastructure.
Harri Urho, Senior System Specialist (Data Center Network, Storage), worked prior Ficolo in Nokia Factory IT responsible for Nokia mobile phone factory Unix servers and storage solutions. From experience he can tell that storages are nowadays complex solutions. Due to this complexity when making your pick many issues affect which need to reflect own criteria and expectations.
Whether your selection is dedicated solutions or solutions as a service, with Ficolo you have the control over which the right solution for you. Contact us and we will tell gladly more about dedicated, cloud and hyperconverged storage solutions to help you to make the selection.
Data protection as a service
What would happen if everything you have done during the last month just vanished?
The post was originally posted in Ficolo website in 2015.
What would happen if everything you have done during the last month just vanished? Sweaty palms and rising pulse would be an understatement, to say at the least. What to answer to a customer asking after his order? Order of which there are no traces to be found. Customer of which there are no records of. Customer who might soon be a potential former customer.
What would happen if everything you have done during the last month just vanished? Your palms are damp with sweat and your heart rate is rising – what do you say to a customer who is anxious to get their order? Order of which there are no traces to be found. Customer of which there are no records of. Customer who might soon be a potential former customer.
It is safe to say that it is not the question of necessity of backup solutions and data protection. But how it is done, is yet another question. Ficolo offers different kind of backup solutions for existing and new customers of which customer can choose the most suitable options meeting their needs:
- EMC Avamar + Datadomain, backup solution for servers, applications and virtualized environments
Alike DR backup for Citrix Xenserver ja Hyper-V environments
- Cost-effective disk storage for customers’ own backup needs
EMC Avamar is fast and reliable data protection solution with backup and recovery features. It is designed so that minimum data is transferred over the network. The deduplication feature enables that only unique, compressed data is backed up. Avarmar is a cost effective solution which saves needed storage space, network and time.
Avamar is placed in a protected, separate space inside Ficolo’s bedrock tunnels. In addition to traditional operating system and application backups (database or email for instance) Avamar is optimal for virtual environments.
All backup solutions offered by Ficolo are situated separately from other production environments. Even after a worst scenario data is protected and recoverable.
You can’t control anything indefinitely, but you can prepare for the unexpected. When backup solutions are in place – you can be sure that the potential former customer is current satisfied customer!