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Data center infrastructure management

Data center infrastructure management

At its most basic level, a data center is a physical location where businesses keep their mission-critical programs and data.

The design of a data center is built on a network of computer and storage resources that allow shared applications and data to be delivered.

Routers, switches, firewalls, storage systems, servers, and application-delivery controllers are all important components of a data center design.

What defines a data center infrastructure management?

Data centers nowadays are vastly different than they were only a few years ago. Virtual networks that support applications and workloads across pools of physical infrastructure and into a multicloud environment have replaced traditional on-premises physical servers.

Data exists and is networked across numerous data centers, the edge, and public and private clouds in today’s world. The data center must be able to communicate with all of these different locations, on-premises and in the cloud.

The public cloud, too, is made up of data centers. When applications are hosted in the cloud, the cloud provider’s data center resources are used.

Why are data centers important to business?

Data centers, in the field of enterprise IT, are meant to support business applications and operations such as:

  • Email communication and file sharing
  • Applications for Productivity
  • Management of customer relationships (CRM)
  • Databases and enterprise resource planning (ERP)
  • Machine learning, artificial intelligence, and big data
  • Communications and collaboration services, as well as virtual desktops

What are the core components of a data center?

Routers, switches, firewalls, storage systems, servers, and application delivery controllers are all part of the data center design. Data center security is crucial in data center design because these components hold and handle business-critical data and applications. They provide the following services when combined:

Infrastructure for the network. This connects end-user locations to real and virtualized servers, data center services, storage, and external connectivity.

Infrastructure for storing data. Data is the contemporary data center’s lifeblood. This valuable commodity is kept in storage systems.

Resources for computing A data center’s engines are applications. Processing, memory, and local storage are all provided by these servers.

How do data centers operate?

Data center services are usually used to safeguard the performance and integrity of the data center’s essential components.

Appliances for network security. To defend the data center, these include firewall and intrusion prevention.

Assurance of application delivery. These technologies provide application robustness and availability via automatic failover and load balancing to maintain application performance.

What is in a data center facility?

To support the center’s hardware and software, data center components necessitate a substantial infrastructure. Power subsystems, uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), ventilation, cooling systems, fire suppression, backup generators, and connections to external networks are among these components.

Data center infrastructure management

What are the standards for data center infrastructure?

ANSI/TIA-942 is the most frequently used standard for data center design and infrastructure. It incorporates ANSI/TIA-942-ready certification requirements, which ensure compliance with one of four data center tiers based on redundancy and fault tolerance levels.

  • Tier 1: The foundation of the site’s infrastructure. Physical events are only partially protected in a Tier 1 data center. It has a single, nonredundant distribution channel and single-capacity components.
  • Tier 2: Component site infrastructure with high redundancy. This data center provides better protection against natural disasters. It has components with redundant capacity and a single, nonredundant distribution path.
  • Tier 3: Site infrastructure that can be maintained at the same time. This data center provides redundant-capacity components and numerous independent distribution methods to protect against practically all physical events. Each component can be updated or uninstalled without affecting end-user services.
  • Tier 4: Site infrastructure that is fault-tolerant. This data center offers the highest levels of redundancy and fault tolerance. Concurrent maintenance and one issue anywhere in the installation without generating downtime is possible thanks to redundant-capacity components and several independent distribution pathways.

Types of data centers

There are many different types of data centers and service models to choose from. Their classification is determined by whether they are owned by a single business or a group of companies, how they fit (if at all) into the topology of other data centers, the computing and storage technology they employ, and even their energy efficiency. Data centers are divided into four categories:

Enterprise data centers

Companies build, own, and run these, which are optimized for their end consumers. The majority of the time, they are located on the company campus.

Managed services data centers

On behalf of a firm, these data centers are maintained by a third party (or a managed services provider). Instead of purchasing the equipment and infrastructure, the corporation leases it.

Colocation data centers

A corporation rents space in a data center operated by others and located off-site in colocation (“colo”) data centers. The infrastructure is hosted by the colocation data center, which includes the building, cooling, bandwidth, security, and so on, while the company provides and administers the components, such as servers, storage, and firewalls.

Cloud data centers

Data and applications are hosted by a cloud services provider such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft (Azure), IBM Cloud, or another public cloud provider in this off-premises data center.

Data center infrastructure management: from mainframes to cloud applications

Over the previous 65 years, computing infrastructure has evolved in three major waves:

The first wave witnessed the transition from proprietary mainframes to on-premises, x86-based servers operated by internal IT teams.

The infrastructure that supported apps was widely virtualized in the second wave. This allows for better resource utilization and task mobility across pools of physical infrastructure.

The third wave is currently underway, with the adoption of cloud, hybrid cloud, and cloud-native technologies. The latter refers to cloud-based applications.

Distributed network of applications

Distributed computing is the result of this evolution. Data and applications are scattered across multiple systems, which are then connected and integrated via network services and interoperability standards to form a single environment. As a result, the term “data center” is now used to refer to the department in charge of these systems, regardless of their location.

Organizations have the option of building and maintaining their own hybrid cloud data centers, leasing space in colocation facilities (colos), using shared computing and storage services, or using public cloud-based services.

As a result, applications are no longer confined to a single location. They work in a variety of public and private clouds, managed services, and traditional settings.

In this multicloud era, the data center has grown in size and complexity, with the goal of providing the best possible user experience.