AIM_Feature(1)In my first blog, I covered the basics of the new ISO/IEC 18598 document for automated infrastructure management (AIM) systems, including the intrinsic and extrinsic benefits. I mentioned that the document will probably be published by the third quarter of 2016 and, as such, network infrastructure managers should seriously consider deploying an AIM system, such as CommScope’s imVision or Quareo systems, in their data centers and offices.

Let’s discuss why AIM is so important with ISO/IEC 18598.

First, the number of connected devices will continue to grow especially with internet of things (IoT) deployment and the location of these devices becoming more important. An AIM system provides the missing link between network or data center management tools and the physical infrastructure that connects network devices. In short, the AIM knows exactly what is connected, how it is connected and where it is located.

Additionally, in the current economic environment, increasing productivity and overall efficiency is the name of the game. Organizational survival depends on our ability to effectively cut the fat and drive productivity across the board. This means that we now must do more with less. An AIM system can help drastically reduce the time to establish connections and implement changes to the physical infrastructure – this results in efficiency gains within the IT and facility management departments, as well as potential productivity gains across the organization. For example, AIM systems can help find the most efficient way for providing a service. AIMcanlocate and identify unused equipment and patch panel ports.

Reducing energy consumption and being “green” is important for the corporate image, besides saving plenty of dollars. There are many different solutions available to help achieve this and some examples include LED lighting, DCIM solutions, and programs such as Cisco’s Digital Ceiling initiative. There are challenges of course, such as dealing with equipment that moves around when setting energy management policies. An AIM system automatically detects and documents any changesto the connectivity information. Taking this accurate real-time connectivity information provided by the AIM system and making it available through integration with the energy management platform allows the enterprise to optimize energy consumption. This can dramatically improve energy management by using location-based energy policies.

Risk mitigation is another big driver. A high percentage of network outages are caused by human errors. This might be caused by incorrect documentation or patching errors. It costs additional effort to correct and can lead to costly downtime on vital services. Network infrastructure auditing is time consuming and costs money. The AIM system gives automated and up-to-date documentation of the physical network infrastructure, as well as a more robust change management process through automated work orders and guided patching at the rack. It provides a reliable audit trail.

Watch the video to learn how Redstone uses the imVision AIM system to drive efficiencies at the desktop.

About the Author

T. C. Tan

Dr. T. C. Tan is the Building Solution Architect for Europe. Based in the UK, Dr. Tan has worked with CommScope for 15 years bringing a depth of experience and knowledge unique to the industry. He holds a PhD in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from Imperial College, London and is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and a Chartered Engineer. Prior to CommScope, Dr. Tan joined AT&T in 1988 where he filled various EMEA technical roles at AT&T, Lucent and Avaya, and was a member of Bell Laboratories.

Dr. Tan has more than 30 years of experience in the telecommunications and networking industry and is a recognized expert on cabling systems, LANs, EMC, BAS and cable fire safety. He has published numerous articles and papers on these subjects. In 2002, Dr. Tan was nominated by NCN (Network Cabling News) magazine as one of the key “Movers and Shakers” for the UK network cabling industry.

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