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I just finished writing an interesting white paper on Data Center Infrastructure Management for Rackwise Inc.  DCIM is not all about cost, although we would be remiss not to take the significant cost advantages available by properly managing our data center estate. The white paper picks up on a number of key themes in Data […]

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Yesterday Chris Leahy (my Technical Facilities Manager) and I were agonising over why we had low plenum pressure in our Data Center and why we were seeing symptoms of hot air trapped in the roof void. We looked at all the normal stuff: Leaks in the plenum space Badly sealed floor Cable access holes improperly […]

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I don’t normally plug press releases straight from vendors but today I received an email from Emily Wood at Google with a message that I agree 100% with. Cooling data centers is not just about refrigeration – there are lots of options – many of which we have written about here on The Hot Aisle […]

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If you have been following the storage business for a while, you will have noticed a few changes: Introduction of Flash Memory components as Solid State Disks Serial ATA (SATA) disks becoming popular and growing in capacity (2TB soon) There are lots of other disk technologies around like Fibre Channel and SAS but SSD and […]

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Around this time, analysts at ESG pull together a ten point list of predictions for the coming year. One of my areas of coverage and of expertise is in the Data Center around power, cooling, reliability and economics. So what’s different this year from prior years? Strengthening fundamental drivers will likely make 2010 materially different […]

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Back in 2008, Steve O’Donnell wrote an article here on The Hot Aisle explaining one of the challenges he set his team during his time at BT, the difficult task of getting Asset Management right. To summarise, Steve kicked off an audit of the whole estate, and where owners couldn’t be found for kit on the […]

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For years I have been a prolific photographer of Data Centres all over the world. I have hundreds of images, some brilliant, some out of focus and under-exposed, (I am a data centre guy, not  a professional photographer).  I thought that I might publish some of the better ones with a bit of narrative about […]

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Recently The Hot Aisle conducted an online survey asking the question – “How do you currently choose where to place equipment in your data centre?” As usual we got a very large response to the survey with 5,580 respondants. The results are in and it shows quite clearly that equipment placement is (to say the […]

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I recently chaired a very interesting panel debate and discussion Hosted By BLADE Network Technologies in London. The panel was made up of: Harkeeret (Harqs) Singh, Global Head Data Centre Energy Optimisation, Thomson Reuters Finlay MacLeod, VP IT Infrastructure, EMEA, First Data Corp Charles Ferland, VP of EMEA, BLADE Network Technologies Brian Peterson, VP International […]

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Next week, Iceotope will announce that it has developed, patented and manufactured an extreme IT equipment cooling solution.  The solution tackles the problems of cooling servers in data centres all the way from the actual source of the heat – at the processor and memory component level – to its final destination – outside air by […]

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Sometimes the IT business and technology in general gets it right by looking back into history for sensible solutions to intractable problems. By combining modern engineering with old designs we get something extremely smart. To provide stay up power whilst our engines get up to speed we can now use flywheel technology to store kinetic […]

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Over the last few months I have been thinking about data centers, how we power and cool them and what we put in them. I’ve been looking at what the very largest consumers of IT infrastructure do with their data centers compared to industry norms. The first take away is that almost none of them conform […]

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I spend a lot of time thinking about data centers and how to make them better, more efficient, more reliable, higher performance , easier to maintain and cheaper to run. Lots of very smart and experienced people have been doing the same for many years and whilst there is no single, agreed best practice, model […]

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I was delighted to hear today that my friends, David Wright (CEO) and David Driggers (CTO) at Verari Systems have been recognized for their great work on driving Data Center energy efficiency. For some time it has been apparent that the modular, containerized data center holds huge promise: Ability to deploy new capacity extremely rapidly Ability […]

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The California Institute of Technology – also known as Caltech — is installing monitors and developing metrics to determine the efficiencies and savings of Hot Aisle Containment enclosures recently installed in one of their data centers.   The partitions and dividers were designed and manufactured by Simplex Isolation Systems of Fontana, CA, to isolate hot […]

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I took these photographs a bit over two years ago at the BT Reuters Data Center in Nutley New Jersey. They show a large CRAC Unit in the process of being installed. Note the copper piping, solder joints, open floor void and general mess that is involved in installation and commissioning. This is not something […]

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      Our atmosphere (the air around us) is made up of gasses consisting of nitrogen (78%), oxygen (21%), carbon dioxide (0.3%) and water in the form of vapor (humidity). The amount of water in the atmosphere is measured as a Relative Humidity (RH) Data Center air should contain the proper amount of water vapor […]

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IT Infrastructure specialist Richardson Eyres recently issued a press release to help drum up some consulting business in the Retail market but make some generally applicable and interesting points worth looking at. Even though most organizations are making energy cuts a top priority for 2008/9, many are not taking green issues seriously enough and are adopting a […]

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AVIVA (aka Norwich Union) is set to open its third data centre – Data Centre 3 (DC3) at the Broadlands Business Park near Norwich, UK  this September. Although the site uses some modern design principles to minimize energy use, AVIVA have been far too conservative with the design and the opportunity to really go green has been missed. The […]

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     The photograph shows what happens when cable management is left to chance. The weight of the cables will put strain on the connections resulting in unexpected failures. Almost certainly the mess will grow and the jumble of cables will spill out of the rack door causing a trip hazard. Yeugh!

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This picture comes from Craig Black and shows the most artistic cable management setup I have ever seen. Incredibly tidy and neat. Craig comments that “The horizontal stuff is Leviton and the vertical is Panduit. It all came together really well — we wanted to make it look neat and it ended up that way.”

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This is an essential piece of equipment in a data center. A device designed to lift and hold servers and other rack mounted equipment ready to install into their home rack. Without one of these (or something similar), it is just a matter of time before you drop a server and injure yourself or a […]

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A photograph from the BT Rochdale Data Center showing how the transparent curtains are attached to the roof. These curtains are used to separate the Hot Aisle from the Cold Aisle in order to drive up cooling capacity and efficiency. There are a number of articles about using Curtains to drive energy efficiency on The […]

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This is an interesting photograph of a commercially available APC Hot Aisle containment system. With adequate cold air to our raised floor, this rack module can house high density equipment.

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HVAC Economizers (sometimes known as air-side Economizers) are useful for data centers which are located in regions of the world where the outdoor temperature is lower than the desired data center temperature (for at least some of the day or year) and the outdoor humidity is mild. Economizers save energy by cooling buildings with outside […]

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