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Smart Out of Band Solutions Can Combat Data Center Failure


December 31, 2015

Is this the moment for widespread use of smart out-of-band (Smart OOB) data center management technologies? Probably.

While IDC predicts that the global data center footprint will expand from 1.58 billion square feet in 2013 to 1.94 billion square feet by 2018, the number of data centers actually is shrinking thanks to adoption of cloud services. Data centers are getting bigger and more concentrated as businesses offload their data center needs to larger providers and cloud infrastructure offered by Amazon, Microsoft and others.

At the same time, staffing levels in these data centers are also declining.

One example comes via Facebook; the company has just 1 worker for every 8,500 square feet of data center, and “lights out” data centers often have even less direct management.

These trends suggest a stronger need for Smart OOB as complexity and density rise at the same time as staffing shrinks.

That’s because one failure in a data center can take down an entire company’s computing operation in a domino effect, and in such cases diagnosis and recovery cannot be managed over traditional IP networks.

With an increasing concentration and importance on smooth data center functioning, the need for an extra safety net for hard resets, recovery and problem discovery is necessary.

Smart OOB can serve this need.

Instead of device management running through the production IP network, Smart OOB can connect via a secure alternative path including Wi-Fi or 3G/4G to provide administrators with a direct link to the device and the associated power distribution unit.

Further, out of band solutions can be equipped with sensors that can alert operations teams to issues based on single events and longer term trending such as humidly, airflow and movement in a data center. These sensors can provide validation around whether a rack has been opened, and deliver intelligence to keep data centers from trouble.

Is it the time for Smart OOB? Most definitely.




Edited by Maurice Nagle

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