In computing, managed hosting focuses on providing third-party services principally to information technology infrastructure. While the usage, in 2010, which tends to get the most attention is in the context of cloud computing, managed hosting services certainly are not limited to things provided remotely to information technology staff.
These services can range from a remotely managed router or firewall at the customer premises, to support service for end users such as first-line help centers and backup of individual PCs, to services remote to specific data centers such as disaster recovery, to cloud services where the service is not associated with a specific geographic location.
Provider-managed onsite services
Hosts being managed need not be at a provider facility. A number of companies will take responsibility for running a data center or server farm at their customer's site. Depending on the nature of the contract, they may or may not put personnel at this facility.
If the management provider does not put its own personnel at your site, the contract and procedures must spell out a means for carrying out functions requiring physical access. It is possible to have remote-controlled power management and other mechanisms that can trigger reboots, but moving cables, or replacing equipment, can never be completely ignored.
Outsourced end user support
Desktop management services, such as those offered by CenterBeam or Everdrea, are targeted at the end user.
Data center outsourced support
Managed security services delivered by SecureWorks, IBM, and Verizon fall into this category.