As demand for increased bandwidth continues to grow, the chief concern
for network IT and data center managers will be to deploy the right
technologies and strategies to handle the pressure on the physical layer. As
this “data deluge” continues throughout the year into 2015 and beyond, enterprise
networks are facing three unique sets of challenges to keep up with demand:
1. Bandwidth and connectivity in the data center
The data center is often an early adopter of technology because it
consumes the most bandwidth. The physical layer and infrastructure must be at
the highest level of performance and uptime. As a result, I expect in 2014 and
beyond that in data centers:
- There will be increased use of higher-grade
multimode optical fiber in most, if not all, data centers.
- We will continue to see a marked increase in the
deployment of pre-terminated fiber and copper cabling.
- Server virtualization has become prevalent in
the move towards cloud computing, driving the need for faster server
- We will witness 10GBASE-T finally take hold as
transceiver costs and power usage drop, driving the need for Category 6A
Another important consideration is how copper will fare over time. When
the end user wants to have a lower cost data center, copper solutions continue
to fit the bill. However, what will happen when data centers migrate to beyond
40G? This might make the turning point where fiber will be crowned king.
2. Harnessing network intelligence
The amount of intelligence gathered within the data center is continuing
to grow. Harnessing the power of predictive analytics through comprehensive software
solutions such as a data center infrastructure management (DCIM) will be
critical in helping data center operators optimize and plan any expansion of
their current facility. An ideal DCIM suite will help organizations have deeper
insight into how their assets are being used, how much capacity is available
for growth and how their systems are interconnected.
3. Rapid uptake in modular data centers
Modular data centers are one of the latest innovations
that could see substantial growth in 2014. This solution offers the capability
of rapid deployment featuring a standard design, tailored to the needs of the
customer, within an efficient, modular structure. A substantial market for
rapidly deployable data centers is developing in high-tech industries operating
in remote areas such as oil and natural gas extraction facilities. We expect
demand in this market to continue to develop in 2014 and beyond.
What do you think will be some of the big trends
and challenges for the enterprise network in 2014?