Modern Data Centers: Designing for Future
Modern data centers are typically designed to deliver two different levels of service: enterprise quality products designed around scalability, and commodity facilities designed to deliver immediate but not long term solutions. In fact, many data centers can become obsolete within ten years. Data Centers should therefore be designed with the future in mind. Will the facility be able to meet the needs of clients 15 years from now? Flexibility is key.
It’s All About Efficiency
Colocation providers for example, are always seeking to maintain a competitive advantage yet build out facilities with little thought to innovation. Currently, a lot of emphasis has been placed on cooling and energy efficiency. Facebook has been experimenting with immersion cooling, a process where a dedicated server is completely submerged in a conductive cooling liquid.
The Green grid – an international non-profit dedicated to modular data center design and efficiency, recommends data centers run UPS (uninterruptible power supply) in Eco mode, a process that will prevent energy loss in backup power systems. Immersion cooling and UPC Eco Mode are just two perfect examples of efforts being made towards energy efficiency within new data centers.
Servers that run cool require less power. Backup systems that prevent energy loss from occurring also conserve power. Utility costs are a huge factor for any existing facility. Old data centers are very power hungry and end up costing more money to operate. Which brings us to the idea of long-term scalability:
Scalability Is Important
Maintaining flexibility over the course of 15-yearlife cycle depends heavily upon a scalable infrastructure. This includes: rack-space, bandwidth (fiber optic cabling), power requirements and capacities to support server density. If a data center takes on large enterprise class customers they must take into account what their growth potential is; will they double in size and require more bandwidth, servers and power? The good news is, as server densities increase operational efficiencies improve as does the cost to house multiple servers per application.
The advent of cloud storage services has diversified the marketplace. Flexibility in the marketplace can bring in more business and foster longevity, even if enterprise customers outgrow a colocation or data center provider. Offering a variety of services, from the enterprise level to small business level, will give customers the options they need to support scalability. An energy efficient facility will allow for future innovation; cooling upgrades, power supply, redundancy systems as well as vertical scalability to maintain value in the long run. The Data Center industry is competitive and designing for future will ensure longevity in the marketplace.
About the author: James Mulvey is a technical writer and blog director for Colocation America, a dedicated server company specialising in colocation and related services.
Companies large and small are continually faced with challenges in regards to managing their IT infrastructure. Whether business is booming or slightly lagging, scalable solutions are a must. So, what is Colocation? What are the benefits, and more importantly, what drives companies to co-locate IT infrastructure? Most decision makers aren’t even sure what colocation is, let alone, if colocation is best for them. Let the following serve as an introductory guide into the world of colocation:
Managing company IT assets requires certain safeguards be put in place, be it physical or non-physical. Colocation is the physical option of placing your IT assets or infrastructure into a service provider’s data center. Colocation providers lease rack-space for servers and give clients many different options in regards to managing IT assets. Colocation is also a cost effective alternative to building an entire facility to maintain and managed company data. Companies may also expand while conserving company resources and capital. No need to worry about hiring an entire office of IT personnel.
The Benefits of Colocation
Companies who opt to “collocate” IT infrastructure can expect an annual ROI on their investment. Colocation companies employ an entire staff dedicated to maintaining, securing and improving the performance of which your confidential data is managed. This eliminates the need to construct and maintain your own data center.
More importantly, colocation services often have neutral relationships between other IP providers, worldwide. They will ensure your company network is online and optimized for fast and reliable service no matter what. Colocation facilities are redundantly backed up. Shall a natural disaster cause a power outage, the loss of data will be prevented. Benefits like these seem to give customers some much-needed peace of mind.
Is Colocation Right For Your Business?
The decision to collocate IT infrastructure is usually determined by two needs: The IT manager’s need to maintain control over IT assets, and of course, whether or not they have the capital to invest in additional IT hardware.
If companies are willing to give up some control over IT infrastructure, then colocation would be a good choice. It is important to note, that colocation still allows for flexible solutions in regards to how your data is looked after. Managed hosting for example, provides companies with the necessary hardware, tools and support needed to monitor your data 24/7.
Larger companies with the money to spend will often invest in servers and house them within a colocation facility. This is especially true if they have the IT staff necessary to look after them. Although maintaining control of data is forever important, colocation stands to save your company money no matter what type of flexible solution you are after.
To sum it up, there are a few questions you need to ask: Is the service provider providing a scalable solution? Scalable data centers should be investing in all the latest technology with regards to cooling, rack-space configurations and flexible deployment of services. Doing so will help deliver a better ROI. Is your colocation provider reliable?
A reliable colocation provider will provide efficient cooling and power redundant fail-safes and should guarantee 100 percent uptime. Lastly, make sure the service provider maintains proper physical and virtual security. Data centers should be like a fortress. After all, safeguarding your companies IT assets is a full time job and most companies are in compliance with industry standards. Colocation should be a solution for IT companies and ultimately help them save money.
We are excited to announce our new special offers at Servers Australia for March 2012.
Mad as a March hare? Yes we are! We are offering DOUBLE RAM & DOUBLE DATA on all our complete Starter Dedicated Servers Series for the whole of March! There are no limits of purchases per customer either, however this is not available as an upgrade option. See our Starter Dedicated Server range here for a breakdown on dedicated server details and options. Offer ends on 31/03/12.
We are also offering 75% off Business and Reseller Web Hosting to our Facebook friends. Available on all web hosting packages for the first six month subscription to new customers only. This is available exclusively through Facebook, so head over to Facebook here, join our ‘friends’ and keep an eye out for the promo code which we will post on our wall, randomly over March. You’ll need to punch the promo code into your order form to redeem the offer. Offer ends on 31/03/12.
Also, just a ‘heads-up’ our $40 per Mbit on all IP Transit Services for new customers ends on 13/03/12!
Call us on 1300 788 862 or email email@example.com if you have any questons. All special offers, and terms and conditions are available at our Servers Australia Special Offers page here.
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If you’re looking to expand your business and need more data space, we’re cutting your costs. Servers Australia are dismissing the setup fee for all new Equinix SYD3 Colocation customers until 20/12/12. You’ve one more week to jump on this special offer, saving you up to $199. See our website for more information.
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Unlike Santa, we’re giving away these deals whether you’ve been naughty or nice -but we hope it’s the latter!
We are offering double bandwidth and double ram to new customer purchases of the ‘Starter Series’ of our Dedicated Servers range. With speed and reliability, our ‘Starter Series’ servers are top choice for entry-level mail server, application server, database or web servers. See Servers Australia website for complete details on our ‘Starter Series’.
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These special offers expire on the 10th November, so be quick to take advantage of these deals. Call us on 1300 788 862 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.