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How to select a data center infrastructure management tool?
03.06.2011, 12:07
Автор: Fred Dirla
Опубликовано: 01.06.2011
Источник: www.datacenterdynamics.com

The year 2011 is shaping up to be an important one for data center managers. Faced with increasingly complex IT infrastructures and rising energy prices, many have decided to get their infrastructures under control. The time for “business as usual” is over and many are taking a closer look at Data Center Infrastructure Management.

According to Gartner, DCIM can reduce operating expenses in the data center by as much as 20%. Other research has shown that DCIM can slash in half new server deployment time, extend data center life by up to five years and help attain a PUE of 2.0 or lower.

Typically, data center managers reserve 20% or more of their power capacity as a buffer against overload – a procedure commonly known in the industry as “over-provisioning”. This practice has become an industry standard, since managers lack a single real-time view of operating conditions of IT equipment and the supporting infrastructure.

Virtualization increased complexity and uncertainty, creating a dynamic operating environment on a static physical layer.  Some experts predict that if every US data center eliminated over-provisioning and utilized 10% more of available capacity, they could collectively save more than $10bn annually through improved data center infrastructure management.

Selecting the ideal tool
Today’s data centers are driving consolidation and blurring the lines between network, storage and applications.  Data centers are becoming more than IT, but a core business value proposition.  This is driving enterprises to adopt automated DCIM tools: technology enabling centralized monitoring, management and intelligent capacity planning for critical systems.

In a resource-constrained enterprise landscape, optimizing data centers is more than a luxury. It’s an opportunity that must be acted upon.  To achieve this objective, enterprises must select the best tools.

When putting together your DCIM checklist, be sure the following are front and center:

  • A 100% browser-based application, offering a powerful real-time data collection and database engine is essential for helping data center operators manage IT assets and the supporting infrastructure while maximizing utilization and energy efficiency.
  • The system should be able to reside on your corporate network, without VPNs or DMZs. This decreases latency and lowers security risk.
  • An intuitive front end that provides immediate access to real-time data.
  • Meets the most stringent data security, application resiliency and bandwidth requirements of corporate IT networks.
  • Ability to seamlessly integrate with virtually any operations systems and hardware running in the data center is essential.  
  • No restrictions on users. The interface should provide rapid and intuitive access to all necessary data.
  • To prevent overload, the solution should be able to provide information down to the individual circuit. Energy-use by rack, row or cabinet is also crucial, as is the ability to simply make PUE calculations for specific systems.
  • Ability to read data across various platforms. This creates a centralized single-pane view, spanning various monitoring and control systems installed at a single facility or at multiple sites.
  • Easy efficiency identification: when managing infrastructure deployments, the tool must achieve the highest space efficiency, resource utilization and operational resiliency.
  • It should manage load trends, capacity and growth in real time.
  • Capacity optimization: measuring energy savings needs to begin with a baseline for current consumption. This way, it can be measured to determine which methods are working and where improvements need to be made.
  • Full compliance with all DoE-proposed monitoring levels for full compliance with energy regulations.
  • Integrates facilities and IT departments.  Converged infrastructure is helping CIOs take notice as any inefficiency or outage directly impacts the bottom line.
  • Electrical distribution redundancy is essential for guaranteeing uninterrupted power distribution in case of failure.
  • Easy installation and operation for both new and retrofitted environments with limited downtime.
  • Easy and rapid deployment of new assets with little or no external programming.
  • Powerful out-of-the-box functionality that provides user-friendly capabilities to create custom screens and reports and leverage business intelligence to ensure raw data is transformed into actionable intelligence. The tools must have the ability to graph all data points and trend them over time.

With so many DCIM tools on the market today, picking the right one is no easy task. But given the dollar-constrained and increasingly competitive business landscape, maximizing value of the data center has never been more important. Before you jump into DCIM, be sure to put together a checklist of necessary features, such as this one, to help ensure your success.  That way, you have everything necessary to optimize your data center and to be prepared for potential issues if they arise.

About the author: Fred Dirla is CEO and founder of FieldView Solutions – a provider of DCIM tools – which he founded in 2009. He has held key management positions in multiple Fortune 500 companies, including a successful stint as Service Manager at Johnson Controls.

Разделы и темы материала: Инженерная инфраструктура ЦОД, Электроснабжение ЦОД, Кондиционирование и вентиляция ЦОД, Статьи, Мониторинг в ЦОД, ЦОД и серверные
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