How to Achieve a Connected and Efficient Data Center

An efficient data center doesn’t just focus on energy usage. It involves the entire physical ecosystem. In her blog, Jennifer Roback discusses what she believes is required to achieve a connected and efficient data center.

ConnectedDatacenterWhenever there is talk about data center efficiency, energy is usually the first thing that comes to mind, especially server power and cooling efficiency. However, there is so much more to an efficient data center.

Efficiency should be thought through and achieved across the entire physical infrastructure of the data center. Some key components of the data center’s physical infrastructure are:

  • Power/cooling systems
  • Space
  • Assets
  • Bandwidth (connectivity)
  • Lighting systems

I believe that the data center of the future will be one that is optimized for efficiency across the entire physical infrastructure.

At the 2015 AFCOM Data Center World global conference in Las Vegas, I will be discussing the connected and efficient data center. The conference will take place at the Mirage Hotel from April 19-23. My presentation will be Monday, April 20 at 11:30 a.m. in the Barbados A&B room. I will discuss how focusing only on the power aspect of the data center might cause organizations to miss an opportunity to have a truly efficient data center.

Focusing on energy efficiency alone, data center operators can realize operating expense savings in electricity bills; however, when considering and achieving efficiency through the entire physical infrastructure, data center operators can more efficiently scale, manage and operate their data centers. The components of the physical infrastructure are not isolated; they are actually inter-dependent.

For example, when designing a data center, design it for modularity at various levels such as the rack level, pod level, computer hall level and building level. Modular design at various levels provides efficiency in scalability. Another example can be found when data center servers are connected to their primary data networks using twisted pair cabling. Other key components of physical infrastructure can be connected to out of band management networks using twisted pair cabling. Low voltage wiring of data centers such as security camera networks, facility access wiring, and lighting wiring can be deployed using twisted pair cabling as well. Managing these infrastructure components using one type of cabling provides management efficiency.

I also suggest that operating a physical infrastructure through the use of single monitoring system, such as data center infrastructure management (DCIM), instead of multiple monitoring systems, can provide more operational efficiency.

If you use a holistic approach with consideration to energy and the physical infrastructure, then you will have a chance to take your data and put it in a usable format to make better business decisions - that’s a connected and efficient data center.

If you are attending the AFCOM Data Center World show, I hope you can attend my presentation. Otherwise, if you have any questions about achieving a connected and efficient data center, leave a comment below and I will be sure to respond.