The Stack Archive Article

Five critical signs for data centre operations

Tue 11 Apr 2017

As the demand to do more with less continues, data centres are under increasing pressure to deliver new levels of efficiency, while reducing operating expenses. Here Cindy Monstream, data communications specialist for Legrand’s Ortonics product line, talks through each of the core areas, ripe for cost savings.

1. Performance
With the rapid movement toward virtualisation and cloud infrastructure, downtime reduction is a necessity.

a. Structured cabling – consider your options. There are systems, for example, that can substantially cut insertion losses for fibre systems and offer copper cabling systems with the performance headroom to provide for future growth.

b. Improve cable management to support appropriate bend radius and cable connections to remove performance inhibitors.

2. Time
As data centre staff numbers shrink, efficiency is a must. Consider:

a. Flexibility and scalability – select systems that provide flexibility for multiple cabling types and scalability.

b. Device changes and the resultant cabling modifications for moves and additions are constantly changing, so specify systems that are quick to install.

c. Improve cable infrastructure – simplify how cables are routed and managed to save installation time. Consider vertical managers to support more cable without adding new management.

d. Flexible cable infrastructure – will support all cabling approaches without having to change cable management.


3. Space
Focus on increasing rack density and “going vertical” offers new ways to gain space. Potential options include:

a. Taller racks – a 9’ rack will have up to 38% more RU space than a comparable 7’ rack.

b. Support for improved Air Flow and Cooling – Rack-based cooling, passive cooling and other methods can increase rack density with more active devices within the same space.

c. Cabling solutions for higher port density – increasing port density, opens up space for active devices e.g. Ortronics, can support 144LC connectors in one rack unit, reducing the number of RU’s dedicated to connections.

d. Fibre and copper combined in one rack unit – mixed-media offerings save space, thanks to a single rack unit.

e. Smaller outside diameter cable – Smaller OD cable can increase space available in the cable runs or in a raised floor.


4. Experience
Improving customer-vendor experience is often overlooked in terms of efficiencies, yet one of the biggest frustrations, is when products don’t work together as expected.

a. Simplify relationships – demand a single point of contact – helping coordinate solutions, delivery schedules and work with contractors.

b. Project-specific expertise – every project has unique demands, but experience pays. Tapping into your partners knowledge and experience, can help shorten a project timeline and enabling greater efficiencies.


5. Sustainability
Energy use and the topic of sustainability are hot topics and a focal point for reducing costs. Look out for products with:

a. Minimal hazardous materials

b. Feature increased recycled materials and waste reduction

c. Next generation air flow and cooling improvements

Connected infrastructure goes beyond power and cooling and through the five core elements outline for data centres and operations it demonstrates that a more holistic approach can deliver a more effective data centre that is also more efficient.

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