The structures and requirements of data centers might be somewhat different. A data center created for a cloud service provider like Amazon, for example, meets different facility, infrastructure, and security criteria than a wholly private data center, such as one built for a government facility dedicated to securing sensitive data.
Regardless of classification, an effective data center operation is achieved through a balanced investment in the building and the equipment it houses. Furthermore, because data centers frequently store an organization’s business-critical data and applications, both the facilities and the equipment must be protected against intrusions and cyberattacks.
The following are the main components of a data center:
- The usable space available for IT equipment is referred to as a facility. Data centers are the world’s most energy-intensive institutions since they provide 24-hour access to information. Both design and environmental control are addressed to keep equipment within prescribed temperature/humidity ranges.
- The core components are equipment and software for IT operations and data and application storage. These are examples of storage systems, servers, network infrastructure, such as switches and routers, and information security elements, such as firewalls.
- Support infrastructure is equipment that helps ensure that the maximum level of availability is maintained securely. Data centers are divided into four levels by the Uptime Institute, with availability ranging from 99.671 percent to 99.995 percent.
The following are some examples of supporting infrastructure components:
- Battery banks, generators, and redundant power sources are examples of uninterruptible power supplies (UPS).
- Computer room air conditioners (CRAC), heating, ventilation, air conditioning (HVAC) systems, and exhaust systems are examples of environmental control.
- Biometrics and video surveillance systems are examples of physical security systems.
- Personnel available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to monitor operations and maintain IT and infrastructure equipment.
In recent years, data centers have seen substantial changes. Datacenter infrastructure has transitioned from on-premises servers to virtualized infrastructure that supports workloads across pools of physical infrastructure and multi-cloud environments as enterprise IT demands to continue to migrate toward on-demand services.
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