Organizations today heavily depend on IT to support all their activities. This is why data centers have become a go-to facility for maintaining network and system functions. Customers too expect nothing but the best. This is why it is crucial to maintain a high performance service. Managing this infrastructure effectively is the key to enhanced operation rates. That is why data center managers should be able to track and assess the performance of individual sections of the data center effectively. Providing them with industry specific products should help them measure performance efficiently and mitigate potential risks. Let us look at these performance measurement products/tools and find out what they can do for the data center.
Availability of IT Equipment:
Downtime is data center manager’s worst nightmare. Generally customers expect system availability almost 100% of the time. Hence, IT personals need to access the reliability of the equipments of the data center so that that can reduce downtime considerably. The data obtained from assessing the equipments should also help them identify and alleviate issues.
Technology has provided monitoring solutions which are based on the changing environmental factors and offers real time feedback about systems responding to factors like temperature, amperage draw, humidity, dew point, and physical security. These readings help the experts set thresholds for different atmospheric conditions. Additionally, this system also provides past information which can alert the personnel about the changing trends so that they are equipped with practices for that event.
Assessing Critical Services
Critical services means determining, classifying and rating the highest priority sites and facilities. Systems like the four tiered classification system which is based on factors like useable capacity, fault tolerance, maintainability and sustainability helps in the evaluation .After undergoing the process, the administrators should be able to employ suitable managements and control systems for these critical sites which will help them mitigate potential vulnerabilities.
Management solutions like KVM or service processor aggregation appliances offer the IT administrators access to servers, devices and even to equipments which are available locally and remotely. These provide BIOS – level access and offer assistance to reduce downtime by allowing instant access to all failed resources and data center management. These solutions also provide analysis and audit logging which helps the personnel gain valuable insight to the daily occurrence of the various operations in the data center.
Measuring the Data Center’s Energy Consumption
The rising rate of energy consumption is a cause of concern for most organizations. This has been a prime concern since companies are employing high density server racks which consume significant amount of energy. Experts are always looking for methods and practices to reduce the energy usage and making the data centers much more efficient. Proposition of implementing PUE and the DCE metrics should enable the data center managers estimate the efficiency of that data center. As Per Gris Grid which is consortium of IT companies, Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) = Total Facility Power/ IT Equipment Power; Datacenter Efficiency (DCE) = IT Equipment Power/ Total Facility Power. The PUE results are compared to different data centers to find out if the data center needs improvements to increase its efficiency.
By using the results of PUE and DCE, administrators can evaluate the efficiency of their data center. Other than these, one can also use application specific data for evaluation. Performance rating tools like EPA energy star and Portfolio manager offers rating to the data center after comparing the results with other data centers. Switching to higher voltage power is also a practice which allows the IT equipment to operate much more efficiently. Regular audits of the facility including the racks and equipment will provide valuable insights like if the under the floor plan should be improved or if some servers should be discarded. Using blanking panels and cable management accessories in the rack can also assist in reducing the energy usage of the data center making them energy efficient.
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