Data Center: Key Developments CIOs Should Know

By CIOReview | Friday, June 24, 2016
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Data center technology is advancing and evolving more rapidly than ever before. Steady advancement empowers CIOs to have futuristic views and knowledge about the future data center in terms of improving productivity and eventually the business. Imagine how bulky and time consuming the IT processes were before data centers came into picture. To eliminate the challenges, need of data centers emerged. Eventually, data centers have dependently been at the heart of IT peers with a specific end goal to diminish costs and to enhance IT services. Here are some of the trends for data centers that are about to be witnessed in 2016 and ahead that can enhance company’s productivity:

• Modular Data Center: Portability is becoming a necessary element in today’s environment. There are various examples of portability around us e.g portable memory devices, pen drives, smart devices among others. Today it is also possible to port the data centers using a ‘Modular Data Center’ infrastructure. The market of ‘Modular Data Center’ is projected to grow up to $35.11Bn by 2020, according to ‘Datacenterdynamics.com’. All the features incorporated in traditional data centers are compacted in this type of transportable data center with power source, fire protection equipment, and cooling sources. With such portability, IT industry is outreaching the scalability and capacity demands by serving large group of data center users. Companies such as Dell, Cisco, HP, IBM, Schneider Electric, SGI, Emerson Network Power, Flexenclosure, Baselayer, and Huawei, are already engaged in providing such solutions. Two important reasons listed for the adoption of modular datacenters are capital and speed of deployment. The traditional datacenter takes a lot of money and time to build. The quick evolution of supporting technologies also is in support of organizations to work with fast and scalable modular designs. So in the near future, ‘Modular Data Centers’ seem to be affirmative solution for data centers as it can help reduce energy consumption and increase computing efficiency.

CIO’s Plan:

Consider rebuilding the existing data center after understanding the requirements needed with changing technology and cost constraints in due course of time. Starting with replacing data center equipment can be initial phase for increasing computing capabilities.

• Software Regulated Infrastructure: Software-Define Networks (SDN) is set to revolutionize data centers by simplifying IT environment and methods to manage data. With the robust development in software-regulated infrastructure, interface between network infrastructure and application workloads can be enabled which will eventually ease network traffic with SDN. The software infrastructure, with its capability and efficiency, is expected to increase its market up to $8Bn by 2018 and the network traffic to be increased by 25 percent and network speed by ten times the existing capacity, according to ‘Centurylink.com’. So software driven data centers are supposed to meet the network traffic and speed with agility in near future. As a result, with fewer errors, CIOs can come up with management or commercial decisions with the data computed by data center.

CIO’s Plan: You need to understand the software defined trends before jumping onto complete SDDC (Software Defined Data Center) solution. In addition, it is wiser to rebuild the entire ecosystem once it is mature enough to accommodate the latest SDDC environment.

• Hybrid Cloud Services: Hybrid cloud solution is another disruption in data center that can enhance virtual environment and bring out computation as well as security solutions for today’s data center challenges. Some level of virtualization decrease manual intervention and improve productivity by retaining every physical element of data centers. Companies such as Microsoft and VMware are at the forefront for providing hybrid cloud solutions and have a wide network with vendors. Organizations can gain benefits by placing some of the workloads on the cloud that can carry out compute capacity, ensure application availability, reduce cost, and manage disaster recovery.

CIO’s Plan: Understand the role of hybrid cloud that could play before deploying other applications for data center. Also, look for other hybrid cloud services that can bring out simplicity for the applications that are placed in data center within the cost constraints.

• Storage Accelerators: Storage is one of the main concerns for data center in order to pitch-in for better performance. As a result, it may also become expensive to gain ROI if data centers do not perform at their full capacity. As a CIO, it is wiser to look out for opportunities to rectify storage performance problems within the budget constraints. With the advent of latest technology, you have various options to uplift the existing architecture and improve the productivity. Some of the software components that can resolve storage issues are:

• Infinio: A software tool, which works beyond physical disks by allocating 8 GB RAM for each host as a read cache.
• Proximal Data Auto Cache: It requires flash-based storage host to work effectively and provides read-cache facility to customers.
• PernixDataFVP: FVP is used to scale the primary storage by assimilating all storage components of the host. As a result, it boosts up the primary storage by developing a data tier.

Flash hypervisor additionally virtualizes storage necessary for typical functioning of data centers. In addition, it allocates additional storage capacity that meets the ever increasing developmental demands with greater speed and performance.

CIO’s Plan: Plan for low cost software tools initially to increase the life of your current data center. Then you can leap for big dollar storage system once the system is capable.

• Interlinked Structure: IoT is slowly becoming the nerve center for communication. As a result, CIOs can opt for interconnected applications for quick access to data and develop data centers to compute data to the fullest capacity. With IoT, sensors can communicate with network equipments to examine temperature, humidity, and electricity to modify functions accordingly. The implementation of IoT not only will leverage uptime but decrease capital and operational costs. Additionally, data centers will have wider platform as IoT can help integrate data from various sources. IoT will compel operators to completely revamp the way they manage capacity across all layers of the IT stack

CIO’s Plan: Replacing some of the components of data center by IoT to gain potential benefits for organization can bring out drastic rewards and distribute workloads. Such structure is suitable for general-purpose workloads and use as part of ‘Virtual Desktop infrastructure (VDI)’.