In the modern era, you will find many TV shows talking about remodeling plans, building houses, constructing rooms, adding a total gutting and flipping, making things from scratch. But before you start with the journey of construction and remodeling, you will always need the right tools and a fine blueprint. Without the right tools and a clearly planned blueprint, things will go haywire, and what you will build will be a far cry from what you have imagined or planned.

The same goes for data centers as well. With 2.5 Quintilian bytes of data being produced every day, it has become very important to have a safe and robust infrastructure where the gigantic amount of data can be stored, accessed, and processed. This is why data centers have now become an important part of the current era. But building a data center is not easy as there are many things involved in building a robust, safe, advanced, and seamless data center.

A good data center will offer flexibility, speed, and reliability while meeting new demands like IoT, Big Data, and more. There are several factors that drive data center design and planning. You should always get these factors right before establishing a budget and drafting blueprints. This is why we have created a practical guide in this blog that you can use for data center designing and planning.

Start with determining the IT reliability needs

Most people think that all their systems and applications are mission-critical, which means that they are vital to the functioning of the firm. But you should know that the real measure is how a firm will perform without the application and software during an outage situation. The systems that the company will lose can make the data vulnerable, and it can result in a major financial loss as well.

This is why the effect of an outage should always be quantified on the basis of duration before beginning with your data center designs and plans. By quantifying the effect of an outage on the basis of time duration like 10 minutes, half an hour or one hour, businesses will be able to know how much redundancy they will need to introduce in the data center. Knowing how much redundancy will guide you towards an ideal data center design and plan.

You should always begin your data center planning with a realistic assessment of criticality for each system. With this vital information and by understanding what actually is driving the different types of classification, you will be able to build an ideal data center.

Analyze the potential for growth

One of the most important considerations in data center planning should be is the on-site moving along with the potential for growth. After determining the IT reliability needs, you will need to analyze the potential of growth and determine whether it is going to be positive or negative. There are only a handful of companies that took back everything to their own data center after facing problems related to price and performance with the service provider.

But independent growth in power, heat loads, and space required to make the prediction of potential growth a very challenging task. Small IT hardware systems have mainly reduced vertical dimensions, but they make the hardware deeper. Instead of the traditional hardware depth of 36’’, data centers should use hardware depth ranging from 42’’ to 48’’. In addition to this, the data center also needs spacious aisles for moving racks and other hardware. Replacing the traditional cabinets that are 24’’ wide with newer ones will provide enhances cable density. This is why the modern data center uses cabinets that are at least 30’’ wide.

If you are able to pack more hardware in the cabinet, then you will surely get better performance. You should know that both virtualization and consolidation play an important role in data center plans and designs. It is true that it is very difficult to predict growth in companies that carry out acquisitions and mergers, and those that are involved in the field of research. This is why there is no perfect prediction for
growth for more than a few years ahead.

Knowing the rate of churn or hardware refresh

There are many firms that use their own data center, and this is mainly because of the high rate of churn. It is very important to know that all the financial firms have a very short hardware refresh cycle for maintaining competitive performance. While on the other side, academic institutions have large research systems that show up with little or no notice. Well, any firm can have particular segments that can easily change for multiple reasons.

If there is a high rate of churn, then the data center should be designed in such a way that it can adjust to changing needs without any issue. But frequent and large scale changes in power, space, and cooling system drives up the hosting bill as well. But the good news is that the rate of churn is quantifiable. Yes, the rate of churn can be quantified on the basis of operational history. By using this vital information, you can also decide the degree of flexibility that you will require in your data center architecture.

Begin with actual parameters

After getting clear about the fundamental requirements, you will need to establish the actual parameters like power and heat loads. You should never use the traditional watts per square foot measure because the modern-day data centers are uniform throughout the entire space. If you design for averages, then you might have insufficient capabilities in particular places and over-provisioning in others. You should always develop load estimates by cabinets and provide a good identification for relative cabinet drawers.

It is very necessary to know that even the building plays an important role in building an ideal data center. There is no denial in the fact that green buildings have their own limitations, but even using existing structures can wreak havoc. So, always keep the building that you are going to use for your data center in mind while designing your data center architecture.

The practical guide outlined in this blog post is based on the modern methods used by the data centers of the current era. The modern-day data centers are very different from the traditional data center, but the purpose of building data centers remains the same. Use this practical guide and build an ideal data center based on modern technology and updated methods.