Over a decade ago, mostly large enterprises were the ones that performed data center management. Most of these big organizations had reserved a lot of space for data centers – whole floors, to be more precise. Apart from that, they also reserved space for IT teams that were supposed to support and manage these services. Those big companies had the need for data centers and the space to store them.
However, things have changed a lot in modern business, as there is a constant growing need for business organizations to stay active online at all times. This means that the need for data center management services is quickly becoming an imperative and every organization needs to have it. The size of business organizations is no longer important.
The need for modern data centers
Since the improvement of digital technology, all modern businesses, no matter how big or small, or the type of industry they are in, can afford to have small data centers that can fulfill all of their needs with just a couple of people that manage them. The current situation clearly shows that the majority of these organizations are looking for data center management services or employ smart DCM solutions that can allow them to have the high levels of reliability and efficiency they need without setting back their support or availability. Today, there are many purposely built data center management software solutions that are perfected and empowered with tools for efficiency and flexibility.
For those business organizations that do not have a good understanding of their IT resources and physical assets, a data center management solution can allow them to reach their business goals and optimize their performance. It is possible to centralize monitoring, create and manage virtual and physical infrastructures, and manage capacity planning. The important data will be at the right place when needed, no matter the business organization. These are all vital to modern businesses, so let’s see how valuable data center management really is.
Focus areas of data center management solutions
A data center management solution plays a part in many different areas and, because of its versatility, it is often divided into multiple, smaller main pieces. They can be implemented together at once or individually, during the later process of data center management implementation. The good news is that most professional and high level data center management vendors like to categorize their software into separate but similar groups. This allows for simpler comparison, more influenced by the systems and equipment deployed, as well as the management preferences a certain business organization has.
When these pieces are placed together, it is for the purpose of providing a comprehensive solution that connects infrastructure and IT systems. This will also include a system that will monitor and manage everything that is needed, including the power that is coming in and out of the building, power inlines going through distribution systems and into the power distribution units, the power going to devices and other services, and also the cables and paths for all cooling and heating systems.
The organization inside data center management solutions
In most cases, these solutions are divided into a couple of primary pieces. These pieces are usually:
- A piece for planning that usually includes inventory and asset management
- A piece responsible for operations that include equipment monitoring and live statistics
- A managing and monitoring piece that works on monitoring and power configuration
It is very important to remember that all of these pieces are connected. They are able to communicate amongst themselves and populate the data that is needed. The main concept is to offer an appropriate interface for all the existing positions in a certain organization, enhanced with a map and an overall understanding of all the things that are connected and populated.
So, let’s get to those individual pieces of a system.
Inventory and asset management
The inventory and asset management function of data center management solutions includes separate management of all the pieces that are included in a single data center. But still, it is not as limited as it might seem ,as it also has many different tools that allow it to utilize information. These tools perform planning for changes, energy costs, power efficiency and consumption, managing a part of the workflow, power planning, capacity planning, cooling, heating, ventilation planning and performance.
Yet another piece that can be used in some cases has the option for managing high level resources and reporting. It is usually used to emphasize on executive management and this is why the whole reporting process is much less granular and focus is on noticing large scaled trends.
Data center management and operations
The data center for management and operations is a piece that is usually focused on solutions that the daily operations staff will use. These operations include live monitoring and, sometimes, management of all the devices that are currently within a certain data center. Still, the majority of these solutions revolve around listing devices that can be used for security, the environment, cooling and power.
It also gives a live overlook of the all the things that are placed in the data center and their locations, threshold, alarm management, and a lot of variables that can be used by any individual to test for various problems. This solution can also have an additional option built in for workflow management. This allows for bridging between planning and inventory, as well as daily operations.
Monitoring and power configuration
The monitoring and power configuration piece is for managing power, how it enters the whole system, how it is distributed through the whole system and how it monitors the current status of the power level. A majority of these types of solutions give an option to monitor and visualize the whole power path and, if there is a chance failure somewhere, you can warn all other devices on the path about the potential danger.
For example, in case a problem occurs somewhere at the distribution point that is in charge of powering either the primary line or the secondary line which is coming in, the devices along the path could face great danger. By employing these solutions, all of this valuable information can be viewed in real time and this allows for a proper and timely reaction before a disaster occurs.
Comparison of data center management tools
It is important to mention that, when there are a lot of data center management service vendors, there are also going to be similar solutions that overlap each other’s functions and the areas they cover. The best solution for a certain organization will be determined on the organization’s requirements and the coverage of a certain tool.
As data centers continue to evolve, it is essential that all the necessary elements within them evolve as well. Until now, these differences have created issues when it comes to managing. This is why the systems and technologies similar to data center management tools have created techniques that can bridge the differences in these structures and create an advantage for everyone involved.
These are the main benefits of having a data center management system. If you rely on your data, it is valuable to have one, as your business will improve drastically.