Friday, January 31, 2014

2014 TREND#5 Hdw.(servers / SAN) operational temperature a concern

Hardware temperature has become the key for the Data Centres´  Total Cost of Ownership, this simple physical variable is the main concern for all DC´s OPErators & Investors.

But what (as DESigners, CONstructors & OPErators) can we do?
Well depending on the mission critical facility type it is possible to choose, change or mitigate the outlet temperature in the Hdw. equipment, we have discussed until be tired regarding the techniques to decrease or mitigate the inlet airflow´s temperature

 EU Code of conduct give us the ABC  for doing since the design the best practices to reduce the inlet temperature, however the outlet is the important topic as well depending on the Cooling DESign:
  •  natural, 
  •  electromechanical, 
  •  liquid, 
  •  PODs, 
  •  Hot/Cold aisles  
  • Chimneys
Among others

Ideally the newest equipment can OPErate at 30oC or higher so the return airflow -when electromechanical- temperature differences are lower and equipment works better. And of course the cost of energy is lower.

But what about those techniques like  Free Cooling (here Free do not mean gratuitous)  or the old fashion  Liquid one with the electronics total immersion in a coolant?

Exist several new solutions to decrease the computer room´s temperature but they need to be understand by us and to give them a deeper evaluation to decide if in our DC can fit better than a cold water circuit.

Smaller computer room layout give us the opportunity to scale the best cooling solution, more effective and more efficient due to the possibility to fulfill all cabinets with servers and calculate better those hot spots that force us to raise the cooling tons to try to mitigate the heat.

Physics  give us the opportunity to imagine new ways to solve problems, my perception is that we need to understand, analyse, evaluate and compare benefits - cost relationship to decide if certain cooling technique can be use in our mission critical facility.

Or what do you think?

roberto sanchez,RCDD

Monday, January 27, 2014

2014 TREND#4 Mobile APPs will drive the storage / process / connectivity issues.

Mobile apps are rocking the life, everyone can in his hand to get the results for several and different applications softwares (APPs)  that facilitate our lives; indeed tablets & smartphone give us today an empowerment that never before the humankind has had.
 If you have an OS or and Android gadget you will be able to convert lb-kg, or to measure your heartrbeat, or record the grandparent´s voice, or scan on site any document, simply take a picture. All that information have to be transmit. process, storage. So the obvious question is where those activities take place?  Yes, correct!  in a data centre.

As many people get more and more  such technological devices, we are needing more and more IT equipment (servers, SAN, switches)  and consequently more "white space" have to be set in any part of this world.

So companies like Apple with its Applestore, are requiring to extend their Data Centres to storage, manage, sale, process, all those APPs in the market.

On the other hand the APPs´developers are just kids no older than 15-16 years -sometimes younger- that are changing paradigms for "talent search & self employment" (see

We as DCs providers must realize that our business has changed in all ways, we must understand that we have to adapt in days (maybe hours) to fit and be handy to those that are imagine things once impossible of think not for us, but for the humanity.

 APPs  will rule in few years more and more of our lives and Data Centre professionals will give the rigth place (at least this beginning part of XXI century) to reside and growth, the Data Centre.
 All of them will be in "cloud"  to share, exchange, trade, buy, deliver, solve and give more solutions that will -in theory- set a better life quality, or at least that should be the idea.


or what do you think?

roberto sanchez, RCDD

Thursday, January 23, 2014

2014 TREND# 3 Business Continuity OPE

Business Continuity is a need in any organization, however in some countries, markets, industries it still is not very well understood.

Information business embedded in the organization have (almost always) quite clear what BC is.

"Contingency planning and disaster recovery were largely information technology-led responses to natural disasters and terrorism that affected businesses during the 1980s and early 1990s."  

This need has become a business-led process and encompass preparing for many forms of disruption. So the discipline became known as business continuity management (BCM). ISO
(International Standardization Organization)  has developed an standard ISO 22301 for BCM which can be used by organizations of all sizes and types.

 Today in several countries this standard is driving what all entities -public & private- use to mitigate the effects of disruptive incidents -natural, health, terrorism, crime- on society. Also, businesses recognized their dependence on each other and sought assurance of keep in business.

So information is an asset that can be harmed by different incidents and OPE/CON/DES  teams have to take in consideration every potential risk that could jeopardize the OPEration of a Mission Critical facility (Data Centre, Hospital, C4, and so on). This situation has let a "new" class of resources to minimize, mitigate, restore and continue the organization business.

BCM is not an island among all other organization´s functions but one that has to stick Policies, Process, People & Infrastructure. Today we can not think that if our facility (DC, Comm rooms) are OK, this will keep the organization running with key suppliers and partners would continue to provide key products and services, even when incidents occurred. Among all of this the IT systems are a corner stone for the BC.

As we can imagine to run a business we have to understand all the interactions (environment, place, suppliers, market, transport, storage,............) it has to find out which are the RISKs that exist  for "doing business.

Risk Assessment, Business Impact Analysis, BC planning are just basic tools to BE PREPARE -as scouting- to response to all and any topics that our organization will face during the time.
And all of them have to be RE asses in a period term (at least every year or when an incident occurs) to avoid our complacency.

Business Continuity  is not new  "NOAHs Ark"  is a clear sample that show us that mankind have been always aware about life is dangerous, not only for organization but humans too.

Or what dio  you think?

roberto sánchez, RCDD

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

2014 TREND# 2 Energy Efficiency in Mission critical facilities

Energy Efficiency

All of us (OPE/CON/DES) people want to increase efficiency, today we have to think how efficient are or must be  the new cloud and enterprise data centers. 

 In audits of 45 data centers (a report from Upsite Technologies , the data centers averaged 3.9 times the amount of cooling capacity actually required by the demand of the associated IT load. -So efficiency is not a very good one-, according to the report, had increased from a factor of 2.6 in a previous study conducted 10 years earlier. 

So what does it mean?  easy for any financial guy, we are not efficient when using energy and this is money that we do not want to waste. The last 5-6 years all of us have learnt that COOLing is the worst money consuming among all trades in a mission critical facilities (we will see deeper in a 2014 Trend )  Then the story what can we do to reduce such expenses?

1. To comply with national (volunteer or not)
  • UK´s     Carbon Reduction Commitment  (CRC) , 
  • Australia´s Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS)
  • EU       Code of Conduct for Data Centres
  • MEX    NMX HP data centres, HP Buildings
  • USA     EPA -  Energy Star 
  • Japan    Energy Conservation law
And all other countries that have regulations to comply

2. To DESign  to  CONstruct or REfurbish to accomplish best practices 
  • air flow clearance (no cabling beneath)
  • gaps in raised flooring or racks (closing them)
  • temperature (raising)
  • containment (hot/cool aisles)
and several others that standards & codes & best practices propose for energy efficiency (Green Grid- UTI-TIA-NMX-LEED-CEEDA,....)

4. To measure  using DCIM and / or  BES  software in evevry point to monitor how the cooling/ energy performance goes and to prevent and plan any adjust

4. To use energy efficiency metrics( vg. PUE, Carbon Net zero,...)

5.. To use Direct Current to avoid conversion  (AC-DC-AC-DC)

6.  To use renewable energy sources (solar, wind, .....)

7.  To use more efficient hardware (Connectivity, Storage , process)

8.  To use  virtualization, clouding  services  (SaaS, IaaS,....)

among them and all others that can be achieved to conduct to energy efficiency and reduce the cost of OPEration.

The great issue is to REDUCE  and get more efficiency when we are using energy. this is not only a economic / business good sense matter but a priority issue that all and each one of us have to do not for our children or grand children but for ourselves in our life term.

Or what do you think?

roberto sanchez, RCDD


Saturday, January 11, 2014

2014 TREND #1 GRC Governance-Risk-Compliance

Governance - Risk - Compliance

 GOVERNANCE: gives the way how the organizational business will be conducted by class "C" and always show to the world / community the way of organizations "want" to be recognized publicly. Maybe as a social responsible organization, or as Non profit or a Conglomerate entity. Its internal rules (not always disclosure) could arise the eye browns or make an applause from the society.
This set of policies, rules, codes make clearly how the business run inside & outside itself. 
All process should focus in obtain/maintain the coherence in them.

RISK: This concept is steering the organizational behaviour for doing business around the world. Any economical activity have Risks to overcome /  contain /mitigate or even circumvent by the class "C" because the organizational business nature. With this in mind the organization have to set a clear GO /NOT GO  risks that them are willing to accept and how they will manage case by case.
Political, Demographic, War, Terrorism, Health, Competition, Technology, Money, Legal,... are some of the risks that have to been addressed by the high management. 
The most important asset in this century is the information, so the security issues regarding how, when, where, who will keep the organization´s information is a top need and certainly the highest priority in so many entities (governmental, private).

COMPLIANCE. this are a set of different levels (international, national, market, business, systems, technology)  of documents  Law, codes, standards, best practices, good practices, process. So the business is in good standing among the authorities, market, consumers, customers, suppliers, to conduct the business as is expected by the society as a whole.

 Data centres are that part of the business where all information is located, so the facility operation -construction-design must keep all of those good practices honoured.

As the DC´s market has been growing these last 7-8 years the facilities have change from those crystal fishbowl up to a armoured steel box, where everything  inside is SAFE.

Today these facilities should be OPErate taking in consideration all GRC features depending on its own business, so COLOcation, GOVerment, INTernet, ENTerprise, and the different kind of DCs must be on that line.

At this point 2014 will maintain as a trend the need perform the RISK assessment (location , weather, natural disasters, demo/political environment, and so on) to set BIA to keep the OPErational CONtinuty management.
The GOVERNANCE issues that modeling the organizational business will maintain a straight vision to get the organizational goals, revenue, growth as the world economy has recovered a good portion of what it lost on 2008 crash. The organizations will invest more & more to reduce operational cost via Digital business.
COMPLIANCE  will follow the fiscal / accounting transparency (BASILEA III)   so the business around the world and the governments will  keep an eye in taxpayers to stop frauds & tax avoidance's,

Data Centres are the core of the modern information society, they are -not will- the way to get this world running among smart gadgets, laptops, cctv, credit cards, .....

or what do you think?

roberto sanchez, RCDD

Monday, January 6, 2014

2014 TRENDS Mission critical facilities

Never as today the data is growing every second (mobile gadgets, financial operations, goverment services, news, knowledge, science,.......) And everything must be process, connect & storage in Data Centres.

DCs  business has been developed in the last 4-5 years quickly and astonishing, we are in the dawn of the digital era. As much digital development we achieve we will observe that these facilities (DCs) will be ubiquitous in our lives. It will take some decades of course but it is a trend.

Our -as DCs pro´s-  duty is to find out which DC´s model could fit better in each need that customer will need for they business / mission.

  1. GRC  Governance-Risk-Compliance will mantain a high concern in the business.
  2. Energy Efficiency -even the world largest economy will declare self sufficent in petrol- will remain a sustainable issue. 
  3. Continuity OPEration as a management trend will keep still the attention on how to run such facilities.  
  4. Mobile APPs that must comply with standards /rules / laws will drive the storage / process / connectivity  issues.
  5. Hdw.(servers / SAN)  operational  temperature will still a concern into the facilities-
  6. Quick DCs  deployment (DES-CON-Cx)  to OPErate as soon as possible is becoming a high priority issue
  7. World standarization could be re launch to get the same quality facilities all over the world.
  8. Hiring  professionals well trained will remain an issue.

So lets begin with the features of each one.

Roberto Sanchez, RCDD