by Anh Son Ngo / 5 minutes read

5 Things you should know about data center facility 2022

What is a data center and how IT works?

A data center is a physical facility that provides the computing power to run applications, the storage capacity to process data, and the network to connect staff to the resources that they need to do their jobs. 

Experts have predicted that cloud-based alternatives will replace on-premises data centers. Still, many companies have concluded that they will always have applications that must be run on-premises. Rather than dying, the data center is developing even fast. 

It is becoming more distributed, with edge data centers emerging to process IoT data. It is modernized to work more efficiently through technologies like virtualization and containers. It adds cloud-like features like self-service. And the on-premises data center is being integrated with cloud resources in a hybrid model. 

Once available only to large companies that could afford the space, resources and staff to maintain them. Today's data centers come in many forms including collocated, hosted, cloud and edge. In all of these scenarios, the data center is a noisy, cold, enclosed space that keeps your application servers and storage devices safe so you can get work done 24/7. 

And this is how it works:

Data center services are typically implemented to protect the performance and integrity of key data center components. 

Network security appliances: These include firewalls and intrusion prevention to protect the data center facility. 

Application Delivery Assurance: These mechanisms provide application resiliency and availability through automatic failover and load balancing to maintain application performance.

The key is to understand what a data center is and how it works

data center
The key is to understand what a data center is and how it works

What are the four main types of data centers? 

There are various data centers and enterprise systems available. Their classification is based on whether one or more companies control them, how they match with (if at all) the architecture of other data centers, the computing storage capabilities they use, and even their energy efficiency. There are four main types of data centers: 

Enterprise data centers 

These are built, owned and managed by businesses and are tailored to their customer base. Typically, are located at the main site. 

Cloud data centers 

A cloud service provider hosts data and applications in these types of external data centers. 

Colocation data centers 

In colocation (colo) data centers, a company rents space in an external data center that is controlled by a third party. The colocation data center houses the architecture, including facilities, ventilation, connectivity and protection, while the enterprise provides and operates the elements such as servers, storage and firewalls.

Data center managed services 

These data centers are managed on behalf of a company by a third party (or managed service provider). Instead of buying the equipment and facilities, the company rents them.

What do data centers provide?

A data center is a facility that provides shared access to applications and data over a complex network, computing, and storage infrastructure.

What is data center infrastructure?

Small businesses can thrive with multiple servers and network-attached storage arrays in a closet or small room, while large IT organizations can fill vast storage space with IT infrastructure and equipment. In other cases, data centers can be assembled into mobile facilities, such as shipping containers, also known as data centers in a box, that can be moved and provisioned as needed.

However, data centers can be defined by different levels of reliability or resiliency sometimes referred to as data center tiers. In 2005, the American National Standards Institute and the Telecommunications Industry Association published the ANSI/TIA-942 Telecommunications Infrastructure Standard for Data Centers, which defines four levels of data center design and implementation guidelines for data.

Tiers can be differentiated according to available resources, data center functions, or availability guarantees.

The Uptime Institute defines data center tiers as follows:

  • Tier I. These are the most basic types of data centers and include a UPS. Tier I data centers do not offer redundant systems but must guarantee an uptime of at least 99.671%.
  • Tier II. These data centers include system, power, and cooling redundancy and guarantee at least 99.741% uptime.
  • Tier III. These data centers offer partial fault tolerance, 72-hour failover protection, full redundancy, and a 99.982% uptime guarantee.
  • Tier IV. These data centers guarantee 99.995% uptime or no more than 26.3 minutes of downtime per year, as well as full fault tolerance, system redundancy, and 96 hours of failover protection.

In addition to a basic cost and tax considerations, locations are selected based on a variety of criteria such as geographic location and weather stability, access to highways and airports, availability of energy and telecommunications, and even the prevailing political environment.

Once a site is secured, the data center architecture can be designed taking into account the mechanical and electrical infrastructure and the composition and layout of the IT team. All of these issues are driven by data center availability and efficiency goals.

Purpose of data centers

Data centers support nearly all enterprise computing, storage, networking, and business applications. As far as a modern company's business runs on computers, the data center is the business. 

Data centers enable organizations to focus on: 

IT staff and data processing;

computer infrastructure and network connectivity; 

and security of computer assets.

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Anh Son Ngo

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