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The Evolution of Cloud Computing and Virtualized Data Centers

As IT managers strive to find ways to mitigate their network expenses while improving efficiency, valuable time and money is being lost. Many organizations are experiencing a multitude of outages and failures that result in less efficiency, increased downtime and thousands in lost revenue. Many organizations are upgrading their IT infrastructures every few years in an effort to reduce the amount of downtime and outages that they are experiencing. The need for IT architecture that is capable of enabling businesses to evolve and accelerate their data centers is stronger than ever.

 

Business Demands

 

It’s no secret that IT departments need to find a way to compute and store more data without using more space, money, and resources. Businesses that resort to using virtualized data centers along with cloud computing software can increase their availability, uptime, security, and performance without creating complex data processes.

 

Virtualization

 

Virtualization technology is not new, but the ability to scale and deploy software at unprecedented rates is. The rate that data can be moved, stored, and processed so that networks can operate seamlessly and independently of one another without any additional software is so revolutionary that businesses are trying to figure out to implement the right kind of IT architecture without taking on any of the costs. Organizations gain greater flexibility without sacrificing any of their IT needs to do so.

 

Cloud Computing

 

Software lives in the cloud so that organizations don’t have to invest in space to house it. The cloud location of applications doesn’t affect their ability to access the resources they need whenever they want. They can user as much or as little of these applications as they need and only pay for the amount of resources they actually use. Cloud computing enhances the architecture of virtual cloud data centers.

 

Increased Efficiency

 

Virtualization adds an extra layer of abstraction making it possible for organizations to pick and choose what they use to enhance their operations, increase efficiency, and uptime without having to invest too much into their own IT architecture and foundations. As more businesses start to pay close attention to the evolution of cloud computing and virtualized data centers, the easier it will be for them to select platforms that will enable them to gradually adapt their networks and infrastructure to meet the growing needs of their organizations and reduce their reliance on expensive and traditional data centers.

 

The right cloud computing and virtualization software can mitigate many of the risks and costs that are associated with expanding and running IT networks. Contact Titan Power to learn how our data center designs and solutions can enhance the efficiency, reliability and transparency of your organization.

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Data Center Commissioning and Why it Matters

A company’s data center functions as the repository for all information and provides essential computer network support for operations performed by employees. This center is a significant investment and will provide a company with the support required for future growth and development. For this reason, special attention needs to be given to the commissioning of a new center.

 

Designing and installing a data center is a major undertaking for any organization. This process requires time, money, and attention and may even cause some disruptions in normal business operations. Making this process effective and efficient is therefore important. While some organizations have chosen to take care of design and installation in-house, there are several reasons why commissioning with an experienced team is the wiser option.

 

Your Data Center Begins With an Idea

 

A data center exists from the time that decision makers choose to pursue its creation. Each step, from space analysis and power needs assessment all the way to final system implementation, develops the center’s form and function. Each step in this process has to be conducted with precision if the next stage is to proceed correctly. The successful completion of any data center project relies on the successful completion of every step leading up to the finish.

 

The Expertise of Experience

 

The Titan Power team has many years of experience designing power centers precisely to clients’ specifications. As a result, we can offer things that most in-house data center development teams are not able to. For instance:

 

  • Our technicians and engineers have the skill and expertise required to develop innovative solutions that meet the unique needs of your organization
  • We can create systems that work within the parameters of your organization’s infrastructure and resources
  • Up to date best practices and safety protocols will be employed develop the most modern center possible
  • Energy efficiency concerns and questions regarding backup power supplies can be addressed immediately
  • We provide administrative oversight as well as hands-on design services to better address your specific needs
  • Our team offers support for acceptance testing and other essential protocols to ensure reliable function and compliance

 

Given that an estimated 70% of early equipment failures can be attributed to deficiencies in design, installation, or startup, decision makers should seek out data center development teams that have a proven track record of success. A lot of money, time, and productivity can be lost while the problems are identified and addressed.

 

We Can Help

 

If you would like to know more about our commissioning approach, just ask. We want each of our clients to feel comfortable with all aspects of data center design.

 

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Are You Ready for National Battery Day on February 18th?

For many people, February 18th is just another day of the week. Here at Titan Power, we know February 18th as National Battery Day, a day set aside to recognize the importance of these power sources. Though this day sometimes focuses on the compact batteries used to power household appliances and handheld gadgets, we like to emphasize the sophisticated batteries that are used as backup sources of power for the data centers we design and implement. We know our customers depend on secure and reliable power supplies for their data centers, so we take batteries seriously. Here are a few important things to know about the batteries that support your company’s data center.

 

Batteries Have a Finite Lifespan

 

The batteries designed for use as computer power backups are very advanced and are able to store a dozens of hours’ worth of power in each unit. They are engineered to provide a steady and consistent flow of electricity until the main source of power can be restored. These batteries are able to perform admirably and are trusted by companies all over the world. However, batteries have a lifespan that you need to be aware of.

 

Each battery manufacturer carefully determines the design life term of the units produced. The design life takes into account battery aging features within controlled laboratory conditions. This gives a baseline estimate for consumers to use. In the real world, the functional lifespan of batteries is impacted by:

 

  • Correct battery selection for the intended application
  • Variable operating conditions
  • Application and installation best practices
  • Necessary and timely maintenance protocols
  • Regular inspection of battery operation and power status
  • Whether a battery is fresh or surplus stock
  • If the battery was fabricated by qualified manufacturers

 

Customers that depend on a battery backup for their data center must be aware that design life and functional life are not necessarily the same. Though a battery’s functional life can be positively impacted by many of the decisions made by data center technicians, this longevity must be kept in mind from the very beginning. Even a well-made battery that is regularly inspected and maintained will not perform to expectations if it was incorrectly chosen. An experienced data center design team will help ensure that the correct units have been selected.

 

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Data Center Racks Evolving to User’s Needs

A data center is a dynamic, ever-changing physical and virtual world that can present challenges in terms of efficiency and efficacy. Everything from the way the equipment is stored and cooled to the way that information is sorted presents an opportunity for improvement. Energy efficiency is often a major focus of these centers, as operators focus on minimizing power usage while still properly maintaining the equipment. Getting the right data center rack is a key part of ensuring your information is properly stored.

 

What Users Want

 

Any good data center will take into account what operators need to do their jobs well. There are several things that users have identified as key items to have in a data center rack, such as the following:

 

  • Strong side panels
  • Casters on racks and cabinets
  • Standard sizes and simplified components

 

Surveys have also shown that users want the ability to distribute the racks on an international level and have an electronic lock that grants logged access to the equipment.

 

The Basic Structure

 

Survey participants noted that not only is having a standard size rack important, but so is making sure that the racks provide enough room, both for equipment and the equipment maintenance. As needs for storage change, so may the size of the tools that are being used. A rack should be able to accommodate modern equipment. Not only that, but technicians should be able to access the equipment when necessary to diagnose problems or make repairs.

 

Additionally, there are often a number of cables running through a data center at any given time. Users want flexibility with managing those cables, enabling them to run cords to different machines or rearrange equipment when necessary.

 

Improving Airflow

 

Another area users identified as important is ensuring that there is a proper airflow over equipment. One of the most important things for an operator to do is to consider the system design of the center. There can be two centers with the exact same equipment, but one may generate far less power than the other simply based on design. This is where items such as airflow management comes into play. Improving airflow can be as simple as closing off gaps where cables enter and exit and covering the open areas inside racks.

 

The good thing about data centers is that they are always evolving, just as technology is. This creates plenty of opportunities to reevaluate an existing space and make changes to improve energy efficiency or better accommodate users. At Titan Power, we make it our goal to be an industry leader when it comes to trends and improvements in our field. To learn more about our services, please call us at (800) 509-6170.

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How Robots Can Simplify Data Center Management

One of the goals for proper data center management is to be as efficient as possible when handling information. It should come as no surprise, then, that robots can improve the industry through simplifying many of the tasks involved in the work. A modern information technology system should exist intelligently and, in a way, on its own. Why? Read on.

 

The Case for Robots

 

A typical data center starts at a certain size and grows over time. That growth often requires more manpower, more electrical power and more cooling elements to prevent overheating. Operators in data centers are often challenged with creating the right kind of infrastructure while at the same time keeping energy use to a minimum. There are four main reasons that robots will improve the way these centers run:

 

  1. Automation

 

Data center management can require a lot of sorting, storing and archiving. When done manually, it can lead to long working hours and long wait times for customers who need access to certain files. Robots can provide automation to speed up this process and free up employees to focus on other more important aspects.

 

  1. The Right Temperature

 

As a data center is essentially constantly growing, there must be a way to determine that there is enough cooling provided for each rack or piece of equipment. Fluctuations in temperature can lead to equipment failure and unhappy customers. An automated system to monitor and control the environment will provide more accuracy in finding a cooling leak or making the necessary adjustments to reduce energy usage.

 

  1. Reducing Errors

 

The world of data can be extremely mundane. Storage admins may find themselves making an error due to either human nature or the repetitive nature of the work. In either case, robotics can cut down on these errors. Essentially, there are software robots that serve as policy engines to sort through data and categorize it appropriately.

 

  1. Supporting Infrastructure

 

No matter what kind of configuration a data center may use, there are likely millions of different combinations or ways that a piece of information may be classified. When left to humans, a configuration matrix could undergo constant changes, requiring more work every time and the possibility of leaving some storage open for error. Automation provides a simpler infrastructure to use.

 

In a technology-driven world, robots make for a more efficient and simpler process. Our team at Titan Power knows that this is the future of data center management. To learn more about the way your data is stored and managed, please call us at (800) 509-6170.

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You and Your DCIM Provider

The data center environment is one of the most complex in the world, with an infrastructure comprised of a confluence of interrelationships between different operating components. Thus, executives and data center managers need tools that can help them to not only see the workings of their IT assets and support systems, but also to understand them in order to manage and optimize them effectively.

Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) platforms can help you do just that. These programs can help you to visualize and manage all of your physical and IT assets within a single integrated view and align all of your IT operations with the needs of your corporation. A quality DCIM software program will also allow you to automate data center functions such as capacity planning and the integration of new equipment, as well as help to control your energy costs, potentially saving you millions over the long-term.

Selecting the Right Vendor

Yet succeeding with DCIM requires that you have the right vendor providing you with your service. DCIM has evolved so much since its first incursion into the data center market that many providers are struggling now to keep up. Whichever provider that you choose to work with should view DCIM as a multi-purpose management tool, rather than a simple IT asset monitoring system. With that in mind, here are a few things to consider when selecting your DCIM provider:

  • Understanding the application beyond the data center: DCIM isn’t simply limited to assisting with your IT; it also helps to integrate all of physical infrastructure needed to support it. That includes all of the actual hardware at the many facilities across your corporation. Thus, your DCIM vendor should stress its impact at an enterprise level, not simply a data center one.
  • Selling it as a comprehensive solution: While the original intent of DCIM was to simply monitor energy use, it has since grown to encompass IT automation and energy, service, and supply chain management. Any vendor that doesn’t emphasize its comprehensive use is one you don’t want to work with.
  • An emphasis on management, not just monitoring: Your DCIM platform will provide you with a wealth of energy consumption information. Yet your vendor should be able to show you how to turn that data in actionable information, allowing you to not just visualize your IT operations, but to also optimize them for your organization’s benefit

DCIM solutions can make your life as a data center manager a whole lot less stressful. Yet selecting the right DCIM provider is key to enjoying all of the management benefits that this platform has to offer. As experts in the fields of data center design, management, and maintenance, we here at Titan Power have the expertise and insight to help you better understand DCIM and exactly how it you can put it to good use in your environment. With our help, you’ll have all of the information that you need to make an informed decision regarding your choice of DCIM vendors.

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How to Increase Reception of “Bring Your Own Device” Programs For Employees

With businesses facing more pressure than ever to implement a BYOD program, it is becoming more challenging for organizations to roll out an effective BYOD program without frustrating and alienating employees. Here are 10 ways to increase the reception and popularity of your company’s BYOD mobility program.

 

  1. Regular Audits

 

Use corporate applications and special device configurations to regularly audit employee work activities and communication on their mobile devices without infringing on their personal privacy and activity.

 

  1. Communication

 

Inform your employees of their responsibilities and obligations concerning mobile device use. Mobile devices should be configured to prevent abuse, data wiping, malware, unauthorized remote access and control, and any other activities that can put your company at risk.

 

  1. Data Encryption and Protection

 

There is no need for any company to sacrifice its IT security with the implementation of BYOD. Enterprise solutions provide management tools to enhance security and maintain separation between work and personal use.

 

  1. Device Choice

 

To get employees to embrace and comply with the needs of your business, provide them with an appealing selection of company owned or managed mobile devices to choose from.

 

  1. Remote Access

 

All mobile devices should have profiles, applications, content, and authenticity tools that are configured to provide employees with secure remote access to corporate resources and information based on the type of ownership, use, and employee role.

 

  1. Contingency Plan for Breaches

 

Incorporate a contingency plan for data breaches. Contingency plans make it easier for your company to recover and mitigate its risks.

 

  1. Compliance

 

Mitigate risks by providing, maintaining and updating consent agreements that inform employees about the types of data that is being collected and monitored on their devices. Consent agreements should also include guidelines detailing the type of activity that is allowed on company managed mobile devices.

 

  1. User Privacy

 

Implement privacy management tools to protect and maintain the privacy of your employees and company. Privacy management tools prevent personal data collection and enable the user to configure their mobile device to separate corporate and personal correspondence.

 

  1. Work Resources

 

To further protect the needs of business, use BYOD mobile enterprise configurations and applications to remove company data and access without affecting personal data and privacy when an employee is no longer with the company.

 

  1. Employee Morale

 

Implement a variety of the right strategies and mobility solutions to increase employee morale, compliance, and productivity.

 

With the right tools, your company can save time, money, and resources without sacrificing the security or availability of its data. Contact Titan Power to learn how our data management and security tools can improve the efficiency of your company’s BYOD program.

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Finding the Right Construction Team for Your Next Data Center Project

Choosing Your Data Center Design Contractor

Designing and building your own data center is a massive undertaking. Yet that doesn’t mean that it isn’t a task that even small companies can accomplish. Such a decision, while requiring a larger up-front investment, can help you to save money over time from having to pay for data collocation services. Yet even though you feel as though you and your partners bring enough IT and equipment knowledge to the project to be able to handle the build yourself, you’ll quickly find that that there are enough potential problems that can occur with data center development to make working with a specialized contractor well worth the expense.

Potential Problems with Data Center Construction

While your expertise may lie in the understanding of your equipment, it won’t necessarily extend into how to place that equipment in the ideal environment. Any number of unanticipated problems can occur during a data center build, such as:

  • Required modifications to your initial design
  • The actual impact of physical support systems on white space
  • Time sinks that interrupt your daily operations
  • Budgeting concerns

A qualified data center design contractor and its accompanying construction team can help you to avoid these issues by addressing the potential for these concerns during the development stage. Their experience in overcoming these issues can help you keep your project from being wrapped up in red tape and hindering your ability to deliver quality data management services to your customers.

Points to Ponder When Choosing a Contractor

Yet not all data center contractors are created equal. While each may help you to ultimately get to where you want to be, which is operating your own facility, the actual process of getting there can differ greatly between various providers. Thus, you and your management team should focus on the following service aspects when considering bids:

  • Reliability: Is the contractor able to demonstrate to you sufficient resources within his or her team to be able get the job done to your specifications and within your allotted time frame?
  • Experience: Is the contractor familiar with your equipment, and thus acquainted with its comprehensive management needs (i.e., energy output, environmental controls)?
  • Flexibility: Will the construction team be able to effectively manage any requested design changes or unforeseen obstacles and still complete your construction on time?
  • Price: Will the contractor’s expertise come at such as high price as to drive you so far over your project’s budget that you begin to question its practical need?

The success of your data center project depends largely on the skills of the contractor you partner with in its construction. We here at Titan Power have been recognized as industry leaders in the design, development, and construction of data centers. Our team brings years of collective experience in engineering, architecture, technology, and consulting to each project that we undertake. We invite you to put that experience to work for your organization when creating your next data center.

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Computer Room & Critical Environment Trends

There is always going to be a need for data storage and management hardware and servers. That is why it is so imperative for your organization to find cost-effective solutions and resources to maintain them. This increases the need for data centers, computer rooms, and critical environments. One essential way to achieve efficiency and reliability in your organization is to be aware of computer room and critical environment trends.

 

Trends

 

Data efficiency and reliability are necessary for your organization to continue to grow. Data centers and computer rooms need to be in place to house the electronic equipment that your organization uses to store, manage, communicate, network, and process data.

 

Current trends include:

 

  • Reduce costs and space
  • Increase efficiency and compliance
  • Increase production and security
  • Improve disaster recovery
  • Increase computing capabilities
  • Increase reliability and availability
  • Reduce carbon footprint

 

Use these trends to optimize your organization’s data centers, computer rooms, and critical environments.

 

Consolidation

 

As the needs and the demands of your organization grow, so does the need to reduce operational expenses and paper trails. Consolidation makes it easier to maintain resiliency. Consolidating your data can also be profitable for your business. Moving your organization’s IT infrastructure to a shared environment helps to reduce cost and risk.

 

Power & Cooling

 

Although consolidating to smaller devices and environments means less space, the power and heat that is needed to run these environments increases. It is extremely important for critical environments to be properly maintained to prevent data loss, breaches, downtime, and other issues that can affect the efficiency of your organization.

 

Key power and cooling necessities include:

 

  • Emergency service
  • Regular and preventative maintenance
  • Efficient energy and cooling equipment
  • Humidity control modules
  • Efficient data center design and structure

 

The right power and cooling solutions provide around the clock monitoring and regulation of the environment inside of your organization’s computer rooms to promote cleanliness, air flow, and temperature control to protect your hardware and servers.

 

Modularity

 

Finding and securing the space and finances to build or expand data centers is a costly and time-consuming process. As your organization starts to consolidate its IT infrastructure, the risk of downtime increases. Prevent unexpected and expensive downtime during consolidation by employing the use of modular data center solutions to increase the resiliency of your data and servers.

 

Protect your organization, increase its efficiency, and mitigate your risks and costs by developing a hybrid server consolidation and virtualization strategy. Contact Titan Power today to learn how we can migrate, protect, manage, and enhance your data environments and processes with our data center and critical environment solutions.

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Where Does the Power Used by a Data Center Come From?

Keeping a data center supplied with the power required for ongoing function is a more complex undertaking than many people realize. Since a data center has to operate without interruption, careful engineering is required to meet this particular requirement. While household appliances such as refrigerators are able to sustain constant operation, sustaining a data center is not quite as simple as plugging it in to a building’s power supply. The power that keeps a company’s data center operational can come from a range of sources and the inflow must be regulated by the center’s own power monitors. These monitors detect minute fluctuations in available power and will switch to backup supplies if the primary source of electricity becomes unreliable in any way. Though the whole system works together in a harmonious manner, there are several stages that the power passes through on its way to the data center.

 

Municipal Power Grids

 

In nearly every case, a data center’s power will come from a municipal power grid that is supplied by coal, solar, nuclear, or wind energy producers. The electricity dispersed through the grid is an alternating current – AC power. Though some DC power exists, converters are required to modulate the strength of direct currents before it can be put to use. However, DC energy is still likely to play a role in the supply of a data center, as we will see.

 

A Backup Power Supply

 

Many data centers include a power converter that transforms AC energy into DC energy for storage in the battery cells. These batteries provide a stable and reliable source of power in case the main supply fails or becomes unreliable. Several things take place in these circumstances:

 

  • The monitor detects any fluctuation in power supply beyond a certain threshold limit
  • The transfer switch reroutes the power supply to draw from the backup power source, such as a bank of battery cells
  • The normal flow of power is reinstated once the supply returns to normal levels
  • Storage batteries are recharged from the power grid or other source in order to be ready for the next outage, power spike, or power drop

 

Switching from the main power supply to a backup source takes less than a second thanks to state of the art transfer switches. The rapid transfer from one power source to another ensures continuous operation.

 

Preserving Vital Function

 

A data center’s power supply maintains the function of systems essential to company operations. With the right design and support services, your company’s valuable center will be protected. You can depend on Titan Power to supply the services required to develop a data center that meets and exceeds your expectations.

 

 

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