Components of Data Center Infrastructure

July 29, 2023

Nowadays, no business or Web portal can run without data centers. They come as the heart of all modern facilities and processes. A data center stands behind each enterprise, accounting system, etc. Thus, the number and computing capacity of modern DCs rises regularly.

Below, we’re going to discuss the question, “what are the core elements of a data center infrastructure?”. We’ll pay attention to both non-computing and computing resources.

What is DC Infrastructure?

No system can function without physical hardware. Physical equipment comes as an essential part of DC infrastructure. Sets of components are used to enable network systems to work, cope with tasks, and process datum. All hardware components fall into two main groups, namely, active IT equipment, and supporting systems. IT equipment comprises devices that are used to deal with data processing, storage, and computing. Supporting systems include devices that are installed to create and maintain the required operating conditions. For example, cooling, fire suppression, security, and power systems. The following categories of devices are obligatory for DC facilities:

  1. Servers. These devices are essential components without which no network system can function. They come as the brain of IT systems, where information is processed and stored.
  2. Networking equipment. This category includes routers, switches, and other components of the data center, which are responsible for data transfer.
  3. Storage hardware. These devices are used to keep information on a cloud or other means, provide backup storage, and guarantee safe storage in any case.
  4. Software is related to non-physical components. Multiple utilities and applications are used to organize the work of network systems, manage processes, and cope with calculations. Firewalls guide information to prevent unauthorized access and avoid data theft.

These are the core elements of data center infrastructure. They are stored in specialized server furniture. A floor-standing or wall-mount server rack is the most popular option for ergonomic space allocation and easy access to all components. Such furniture provides multi-level storage for IT equipment. Sysracks comes as a reputable supplier of such furniture. The provider offers a wide catalog of models of any size, construction, and type. Managers help select suitable models for clients’ demands.

Below, supporting data center infrastructure components include:

  1. Accessories. A wide range of supplementary components are used to fasten equipment, organize components effectively, and place them compactly. These include cable management tools (hooks, ties, organizers, etc.), shelves, rails, etc.
  2. Cooling devices. These include fans, HVAC and CRAC systems, etc. Ventilation tools are installed to create the optimal environment for hardware performance and maintain the needed temperature and humidity levels.
  3. Power supply devices. PDUs and UPSs are vital components for every IT infrastructure since equipment cannot run stably without feeding. Thus, each DC has power sources to guarantee an uninterruptible power supply to all units.
  4. Security. DCs are highly protected since network hardware is vulnerable and can be intentionally damaged by intruders. Thus, access to such premises is limited. Biometrical passes, scanners, locks, alarms, and other safety measures are taken to limit and monitor the circle of the employees who enter data centers.

Non-computing elements are highly essential since they are responsible for the creation of an appropriate environment, securing expensive, sensitive devices, and maintaining the required conditions for system operation. While they are not engaged in computing tasks directly, they cope with multiple requirements. They cater to network systems to guarantee uninterruptible and smooth functioning. Backup power sources prevent data loss in the event of an emergency power surge. Humidity and temperature sensors monitor the needed indicators to avoid overheating or rusting. Fire suppression systems prevent the facility from disaster.

DCIM: Skillful DC Management

DCIM is a set of measures taken to ensure the smooth and stable performance of network systems in data centers. Special software is used to control sensors and other tools remotely. The application of such software for remote monitoring allows for developing an effective strategy for DC management. The staff can create a holistic view of all capacities and resources of data centers via the control board. Modern DCIM solutions for data center components’ architecture include:

  1. Business class control. A set of alerts, thresholds, and data collectors which manages multiple nodes of several infrastructures.
  2. Inventory information. Data is obtained from servers, racks, and other network hardware to be aware of the power chain, the quality of connectivity, and running applications.
  3. Data visualization. Findings and indicators of monitoring tools are visualized by means of dashboards, charts, plans, and tables.
  4. Extended functionalities. Planning, modeling, ticketing, auditing, and other functions are available. By building in these processes, it is easier to design systematic workflows.
  5. Tracking all connectors across a power chain to avoid raptures.

Additional services allow for simplifying operations and making DC management easier and more comfortable. As a result, workflows are more efficient.

Kinds of DC Components (DCC)

Now, let’s take a deeper look at the core elements of a data center. These are:

  • Storage infrastructure DCC. This refers to multiple types of storage of IT data. These include SSD (solid state drive), DAS (direct attached storage), NAS (network attached storage), flash arrays, etc. Dell EMC, IBM, and HPE come as the most famous developers of such components.
  • Server infrastructure DCC. This category includes different types of servers for housing applications and data. They distinguish between blade, rack, and tower servers.
  • Network infrastructure DCC. This class of hardware includes switches, firewalls, routers, and security appliances, which are responsible for equipment integration and connection.

Types of DC Facilities

The development of RC infrastructure leads to the creation of new facilities in the industry:

  1. Enterprise DCs. These DCs are owned by one organization and are usually placed on-site.
  2. Colocation DCs. In this case, multiple businesses rent space on a hard drive and share the capacity of one DC.
  3. Managed Facilities. This solution implies that a business leases physical infrastructure, while hardware and facility management is carried out by a third party.
  4. Cloud DCs. These facilities are located online. Companies rent space via the Internet. No offline premises are required for setting them up.

The final thought contributes to the importance of choosing the right partner for acquiring server furniture for your DCs. Server racks are durable and have served for years. Sysrack supplies certified cabinets at affordable costs and guarantees their quality.

About the Author Kyrie Mattos

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