White Paper | October 21, 2011

How Data Center Infrastructure Management Software Improves Planning And Cuts Operational Costs

Source: APC by Schneider Electric

By Torben Karup Nielsen, principal software researcher, Schneider Electric's Data Center Software Research Team, and Dennis Bouley, senior research analyst, Schneider Electric's Data Center Science Center

According to the Uptime Institute (a division of the 451 Group) the market for data center infrastructure management systems will grow from $500M in 2010 to $7.5B by 2020. IT and business executives have realized that hundreds of thousands of dollars in energy and operational costs can be saved by improved physical infrastructure planning, by minor system reconfiguration, and by small process changes.

The systems which allow management to leverage these savings consist of modern data center physical infrastructure (i.e., power and cooling) management software tools. Legacy reporting systems, designed to support traditional data centers, are no longer adequate for new "agile" data centers that need to manage constant capacity changes and dynamic loads.

Some data center operators do not use any physical infrastructure management tools. This can be risky. One operator who only managed 15 racks at a small manufacturing firm, for example, felt that the data center operations "tribal knowledge" he had acquired over the years could help him handle any threatening situation. However, over time, his 15 racks became much denser. His energy bills went up and his cooling and power systems drifted out of balance. At one point, when he added a new server, he overloaded a branch circuit and took down an entire rack.

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