Data center consolidation is an overwhelming event, to say the least. Not only is it complex and time-consuming, it’s also emotional for many data center folks who have grown attached to their spaces.
Chatsworth Products’ (CPI) Sr. Data Center Consultant, Steven Bornfield, has helped many customers through the process of consolidation and states that one of the biggest challenges is that, many times, most data center layouts are outdated because they were generated when the space was built years before.
Bornfield recommends this basic checklist for a stress-free and successful data center consolidation:
- Make a list data center locations
- For each location, what is the power provided (total capacity and number of feeds)?
- Consider service feed uptime
- What is your UPS capacity, age, efficiency and load?
- Cooling system – identify whether it is Direct Expansion (DX) or Chilled Water
- What is the capacity, load, age and efficiency?
- How many connections and providers?
- What is the capacity and performance (uptime)?
- ID compute, storage, network devices
- What is your capacity (amount of storage, compute cycles and network 1-10-100GB)?
- What is the function for each?
- What is the age and planned end of life?
- What software is loaded, what version and availability of licenses?
- Current layout with what is installed in which cabinets
- Identify network connections at end cabinet or rack.
- Ensure that the layout includes total space utilized and any additional spaces that might be available.
Be mindful that consolidation projects are unpredictable by nature. For instance, when this list is completed, it could highlight a space that might be better to keep, while another space might not be worth keeping even if it is the latest space build or has the newest equipment.
“When looking at the consolidation, it’s crucial to determine what the overall goal is,” Bornfield explains. “This goal needs to be discussed in-depth to single out the variables, and plan on how to best accomplish the goal.”
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