Data center management
Data center management is the collection of tasks performed by those responsible for managing ongoing operation of a data center This includes Business service management and planning for the future.
Historically, data center management was seen as something performed by employees, with the help of tools collectively called Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) tools. Now an outsourcing option exists: Data-center Management As A Service - DMaaS.
Data center management is a growing major topic for a growing list of large companies who both compete and cooperate:
Hardware/software vendors who are willing to live with coopetition are working on projects such as "The Distributed Management Task Force" (DMTF) with a goal of learning to "more effectively manage mixed Linux, Windows and cloud environments."
With the DMTF a decade old, the list of companies is growing, and also includes companies much smaller than IBM, Microsoft, et al.
Among the topics currently being explored are:
- Securing Data Center Networks
- Disaster Recovery
- Government restrictions
- Estimated cost of downtime regarding:
Business service management
IBM notes that major problems often happen in the grey areas, particularly due to errors in the interfaces, and focuses on critical failures. Sufficient redundancy should allow failures in non-critical areas to protect the business from being affected.
- promotes a customer-centric and business-focused approach to service management, aligning business objectives with IT or ICT from strategy through to operations
- is positioned above IT Service Management (ITSM)
Tools that help BSM include:
- A modeling language
- A common dashboard, allowing the data center to see problems before business customers do.
Remote Data Center Management allows offsite experts to watch for situations needing their timely intervention at a lower cost than having such staff be onsite 24/7/365.
Data center infrastructure management
Data center infrastructure management (DCIM) is the integration of information technology (IT) and facility management disciplines to centralize monitoring, management and intelligent capacity planning of a data center's critical systems. Achieved through the implementation of specialized software, hardware and sensors, DCIM enables common, real-time monitoring and management platform for all interdependent systems across IT and facility infrastructures.
DCIM products can help data center managers identify and eliminate sources of risk and improve availability of critical IT systems. They can also be used to identify interdependencies between facility and IT infrastructures to alert the facility manager to gaps in system redundancy, and provide dynamic, holistic benchmarks on power consumption and efficiency to measure the effectiveness of "green IT" initiatives.
It's important to measure and understand data center metrics, including those regarding energy efficiency and utilization of servers, storage, and staff. In too many cases, disc capacity is vastly under-utilized and servers run at 20% utilization or less. More effective automation tools can also improve the number of servers or virtual machines that a single admin can handle.
DCIM providers are increasingly linking with computational fluid dynamics providers to predict complex airflow patterns in the data center. The CFD component is necessary to quantify the impact of planned future changes on cooling resilience, capacity and efficiency.
Preventive maintenance (or preventative maintenance (PM)) is ongoing scheduled inspection intended to detect and correct incipient failures either before they occur or before they develop into major problemssuch as downtime.
Managing the capacity of a data center
There is a need to know what will be needed, and when. Data must continually be collected regarding usage of power/energy, computing power, data storage and networking/telecommunications. Plans must include awareness of cooling and space requirements.
Sometimes analysis of this data, and comparison to industry norms, can be outsourced. The balance for the need to focus more on data collection or analysis depends on current utilization levels: prior to 50%, the focus can stay more on data collection. Beyond 75%, the focus must shift to analysis, in preparation for upgrades, replacements and expansions. The data center is a resource in its own right.
Top data centers and service providers
According to Cloudscene’s Leaderboard for Q1 2018, data center operators are ranked “based on both data center density (total operated data centers)", as well as "the number of listed service providers in the facility". Cloud service providers are ranked based on "connectivity (the total number of PoPs) for the region.” Chosen from a pool of more than 6,000 providers, the rankings are as follows:
- Q1, 2018 Top Data Center Operators Worldwide
|2||Digital Realty||Interxion||NEXTDC||Global Switch|
|3||CoreSite||Telehouse||Vocus Communications||NTT Communications|
|4||Zayo||Digital Realty||Global Switch||GPX Global Systems|
|5||Level 3 Communications||Global Switch||YourDC||ST Telemedia Global Data Centres|
|6||Cologix||Level 3 Communications||Macquarie Telecom||Netmagic Solutions|
|8||TierPoint||Colt Technology Services||Interactive||Digital Realty|
|10||QTS Realty Trust||Orange Business Services||Data Centre Limited||OneAsia Network|
- Q1, 2018 Top Service Providers Worldwide
|1||Zayo||Colt Technology Services||Telstra||Colt Technology Services|
|2||Level 3 Communications||EuNetworks||Vocus Communications||PCCW Solutions|
|3||Verizon||Cogent Communications||PIPE Networks||Tata Communications|
|4||Crown Castle||Zayo||Optus||PCCW Global|
|5||AT&T||Level 3 Communications||NextGen Group||Telstra|
|6||Cogent Communications||BT||AAPT||NTT Communications|
|9||Comcast||Orange Business Services||Zencross Connect||China Telecom|
- Data center environmental control
- Service-level agreement
- Application performance management
- Business process management
- Business transaction management
- Business transaction performance
- Team service management
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their existing data center management ...
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Many buzzwords, like coopetition and thought-leading,
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... which Internet analysts love to call "coopetition.".
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- The Times article mentions "a crop of next-tier vendors, start-ups and open source players."
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a row is brewing over an EU plan to curb datacentre energy use
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- "Flights Cancelled for more than 75,000 passengers".
- "What is business service management (BSM)?".
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- "In 2014, Proactive UPS Maintenance is Essential for all Data Center Managers" (PDF).
UPS-redundant configurations, providing backups for backups that have their own backups.
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(DCIM) software enables ... integration ...
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- Tom Coughlin (September 9, 2018). "Green Computing And Storage". Forbes.
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- "Computational-Fluid-Dynamic (CFD) Analysis | Gartner IT Glossary". gartner.com. Retrieved 2014-08-27.
- Ben Zimmer (April 18, 2010). "Wellness". The New York Times.
Complaints about preventative go back to the late 18th century ... ("Oxford English Dictionary dates preventive to 1626 and preventative to 1655) ..preventive has won"
- "What is Preventive Maintenance?". MicroMain.com.
- "What is preventive maintenance?". BusinessDictionary.com.
- Samir Mehra (September 11, 2018). "Capacity Planning in the Era of Infinite Capacity".
- "Data Center Capacity Planner Jobs, Employment". indeed.com (job search).
293 Data Center Capacity Planner jobs available on Indeed.com
- Thomas A. Limoncelli; Strata R. Chalup; Christina J. Hogan. "Room to grow: Tips for data center capacity planning". Computerworld.
- since this consumes both computing and storage resources
- J Xu; M Zhao; J Fortes; R Carpenter (2007). "On the use of fuzzy modeling in virtualized data center management". IEEE.org.
- "Cloudscene Rankings: Top Data Centers & Service Providers Worldwide". Cloudscene.