Redefin­ing Data Cen­ter Phys­i­cal Re­al­i­ties In A Soft­ware-De­fined Vir­tu­alised Era

Here are mul­ti­ple tools that help the data cen­ter man­agers to man­age the servers re­motely. These re­mote man­age­ment tools en­sure cost-ef­fec­tive, se­cure and cen­tral­ized server man­age­ment with dy­namic power man­age­ment ca­pa­bil­i­ties

Dataquest - - CONTENTS - (The au­thor is In­dia Coun­try Man­ager, Rar­i­tan)

We are rapidly pro­gress­ing to­wards a re­al­ity where IT in­fra­struc­ture would be soon gov­erned by ‘Cloud’ and servers would res­onate with what is called as ‘Vir­tual’ and net­works would be­come more soft­ware de­fined. In fact, the irony of vir­tu­al­iza­tion is that it makes the phys­i­cal re­al­i­ties of IT in­fra­struc­ture even more im­por­tant by dra­mat­i­cally in­creas­ing the den­sity and scale of work­loads in the data cen­ter—along with the con­se­quences of phys­i­cal in­fra­struc­ture fail­ures.

Com­pa­nies to­day are sig­nif­i­cantly in­vest­ing on ag­ile in­fra­struc­ture, big data, and rel­e­vant dis­ci­plines to ac­cel­er­ate dig­i­tal cus­tomer en­gage­ment and have a more an­a­lytic insight into them. How­ever, the abil­ity to suc­cess­fully use these soft­ware and data in ei­ther form de­pends on healthy, ef­fi­cient un­der­ly­ing phys­i­cal in­fra­struc­ture. And these se­lect phys­i­cal re­al­i­ties will de­ter­mine the busi­ness per­for­mance at any point of time:

Ac­cu­rate De­liv­ery of the Right Power to the Right De­vice

Ap­pro­pri­ate Tem­per­a­tures and other En­vi­ron­men­tal Con­di­tions

Ac­cess for Main­te­nance and Trou­bleshoot­ing


In­dus­try ex­perts have iden­ti­fied Five Key As­pects of IT con­cern­ing com­put­ing’s phys­i­cal re­al­i­ties, as it be­comes more vir­tu­al­ized, soft­ware-de­fined, and cloud-based, And these can­not be com­pro­mised.


Tech­nol­ogy economies en­com­pass the costs that help drive the phys­i­cal in­fra­struc­ture through work­loads - con­sump­tion of server, stor­age, and net­work ca­pac­ity, which def­i­nitely in­cludes Elec­tric­ity Costs, Labour Costs and Floorspace Costs. Data cen­ters and IT labs ev­ery­where are ap­proach­ing op­er­a­tional ca­pac­ity lim­its. Power re­sources are in­creas­ingly con­strained and the cost of en­ergy is spi­ralling out of con­trol. In­creas­ing den­sity to the racks, real time mon­i­tor­ing of power con­sump­tion, re­mote man­age­ment & mon­i­tor­ing soft­wares can bring sig­nif­i­cant economies and higher prof­itabil­ity.

In­dus­tries are in­creas­ingly adopt­ing in­tel­li­gent PDUS and in­line me­ters that of­fer ac­cu­rate in­for­ma­tion with billing-grade, real-time kWh data, volt­age, ac­tive power

and ap­par­ent power. Three-phase power to the cab­i­net is trend­ing in data cen­ters world­wide be­cause of its suc­cess in re­duc­ing costs by elim­i­nat­ing un­nec­es­sary volt­age trans­for­ma­tions and line trans­mis­sion loss. Avail­able en­vi­ron­ment sen­sors can en­sure up­time by mon­i­tor­ing racks for po­ten­tial hot spots; able to make strate­gic de­ci­sions on cool­ing de­sign and con­tain­ment are sav­ing up to 4% in en­ergy costs for ev­ery set point.


Ex­treme weather con­di­tions, er­rors by grid op­er­a­tors and the cloud/internet con­nec­tiv­ity dis­rup­tion rep­re­sent ma­jor risks to the smooth func­tion­ing re­sult­ing in power fail­ures, con­nec­tiv­ity is­sue and de­vice blind­ness.

There are mul­ti­ple tools that help the data cen­ter man­agers to man­age the servers re­motely. These re­mote man­age­ment tools en­sure cost-ef­fec­tive, se­cure and cen­tral­ized server man­age­ment with dy­namic power man­age­ment ca­pa­bil­i­ties. They cre­ate real time ac­tion­able in­sights that help the DC man­agers to mit­i­gate busi­ness risks. Per­haps, there are unique so­lu­tions that com­bined with tight se­cu­rity, power and en­vi­ron­men­tal con­trol can op­er­ate in pri­vate and in hy­brid clouds en­dow­ing IT ad­min­is­tra­tors to vi­su­al­ize as­sets, trou­bleshoot is­sues, re­store op­er­a­tions and pro­vide the ac­tual pic­ture any­time and any­where.


Op­er­a­tional scal­a­bil­ity is closely tied to phys­i­cal fac­tors like Floor or Rack Den­sity, Power Dis­tri­bu­tion & Mon­i­tor­ing and in­ten­si­fied Cool­ing Re­quire­ments. Data Cen­ters can up­scale ca­pac­ity by im­ple­ment­ing the right phys­i­cal in­fra­struc­ture that sup­ports high-den­sity com­put­ing, scal­able so­lu­tions for cost ef­fi­cient long-term ca­pac­ity plan­ning thereby im­prov­ing power ef­fi­cien­cies. De­ploy­ment of 3phase PDU’s at the rack level – which then pro­vide sin­gle phase power to the IT equip­ment – is the most cost ef­fi­cient way to achieve higher com­pute den­si­ties / rack. Im­por­tantly, max­i­mum util­i­sa­tion of space is in­evitable to ac­com­mo­date the rapidly in­creas­ing big data stor­age needs.

The use of en­vi­ron­ment sen­sors will let the data cen­ter man­agers mon­i­tor tem­per­a­ture in real-time and cal­cu­late po­ten­tial sav­ings. Op­ti­miz­ing the data cen­ter ecosys­tem will help in re­duc­ing op­er­a­tional costs, and im­prov­ing your power us­age ef­fec­tive­ness (PUE).


Tra­di­tional spin­ning disks, spe­cial­ized se­cu­rity ap­pli­ances and con­verged sys­tems that pro­vide tight in­te­gra­tion be­tween pur­pose-con­fig­ured com­pute, stor­age, and net­work com­po­nents are passé since they tend to ac­cen­tu­ate data cen­ter den­sity.

Con­verged in­fra­struc­ture tends to ac­cen­tu­ate data cen­ter den­sity and busi­ness agility can in­clude both scal­ing up and down. It is highly im­por­tant for IT man­agers to de­tect pe­ri­ods of lower in­fra­struc­ture uti­liza­tion and be able to con­sol­i­date VMs, power down de­vices, etc. to re­cover op­er­a­tional costs. And this is not pos­si­ble with­out real-time mon­i­tor­ing that can pro­vide the slight­est in­sights about ev­ery nook and cor­ner of your data cen­ter in­fra­struc­ture. Be­sides, busi­nesses to­day in­clude solid­state stor­age sys­tems that can con­sid­er­ably im­prove per­for­mances.


Se­cu­rity pose to be the most integral part of a data cen­ter en­vi­ron­ment with in­creas­ing num­ber of breaches across sec­tors. It can halt op­er­a­tions, in­ter­rupt sales, cause ir­re­place­able data loss and cre­ate CRM is­sues. Adop­tion of con­tact clo­sure sen­sors can help safe­guard your cab­i­net racks. They are de­signed to trig­ger an event so that a we­b­cam snaps a pic­ture when­ever it de­tects that the cab­i­net door has been opened. Dry con­tact clo­sure sen­sors have pro­vi­sions for third-party de­vices like smoke de­tec­tors that will alert the data cen­ter man­ager about pos­si­ble fire, un­usual elec­tronic door open­ing and lock­ing. De­ploy­ing these will en­sure equip­ment changes are ex­e­cuted se­curely.


It is in­evitable that Data cen­ter man­agers can serve their or­ga­ni­za­tions more ef­fec­tively by ad­dress­ing these phys­i­cal fac­tors while pur­su­ing the ad­van­tages of a vir­tu­al­ized in­fra­struc­ture. The more we leap to­wards dig­i­tal­iza­tion and cloud, the ten­dency to ig­nore ba­sic phys­i­cal in­fra­struc­ture ne­ces­si­ties of data-cen­ter will keep ris­ing. Ac­cu­rate de­liv­ery of the right power to the right de­vice, ap­pro­pri­ate tem­per­a­tures and other en­vi­ron­men­tal con­di­tions and ac­cess for main­te­nance and trou­bleshoot­ing are integral of any data cen­ter en­vi­ron­ment. It would be a pru­dent move to con­sider these as­pects be­fore track­ing other tech-cen­tric is­sue, which might pose a risk to the busi­ness per­for­mance. And like Satya Nadela, CEO Mi­crosoft, rightly worded it “Ev­ery­thing is go­ing to be con­nected to cloud and data. All of this will be me­di­ated by soft­ware”

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