Taking data centre efficiencies to next level
By Eben Owen, E&S manager: South Africa, at APC by Schneider Electric
For many years, as a country with the cheapest electricity in the world, South African businesses did not place the same focus on energy consumption and efficiency as companies situated in other countries. Now, we're finding that local CIOs have to work closer than ever before with facilities managers to better understand consumption and close the gap between facilities and business.
So says Eben Owen, E&S manager: South Africa, at global leader in critical power and cooling services, APC by Schneider Electric, who believes that these two areas, which were seen as very much separate in the past, are now bleeding together.
“One area under scrutiny for improved energy efficiency is the data centre, which historically fell within the responsibility of the facilities manager,” he explains. “Increasing power densities and rapid changes in IT technology, coupled with growing energy costs and uncertain long-term plans for capacity or density have flagged the data centre as an area of concern from a consumption perspective.
“Add to this the requirement by cloud computing for applications to be available at all times, and it becomes clear that now is the time to take data centre efficiencies to the next level.”
Through the use of a solution like Schneider Electric's StruxureWare for Data Centers, companies can address all aspects of the data centre physical infrastructure needed to maximise availability and efficiency.
StruxureWare for Data Centers combines Schneider Electric's Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) and Data Center Facility Management (DCFM) software tools to provide data gathering, monitoring and automation, and planning and implementation functionalities, enabling an integrated and multifaceted view of all the mission-critical physical systems of the data centre.
“This offering empowers data centre managers by giving them access to all the data and tools they need to operate data centres that are more reliable, efficient, productive, safe and green,” says Owen.
“Data centre environments traditionally rely on siloed management tools that require the knowledge and experience of numerous IT and facility professionals leveraging specialised management dashboards to obtain the information they need,” he continues. “StruxureWare for Data Centers provides a toolset from which the data centre manager can access and manage across the domains of the IT room, building electrical power and power quality, facility and data centre cooling and physical security. This management software suite delivers comprehensive, accurate real-time data enabling them to take action based on the complete picture of the data centre.
“By using this type of approach, companies can gain better control over current inventories and dependencies, implement 'smart monitoring' for all critical devices, and virtualise wherever possible. This will better prepare them to embrace the future of the data centre, where workloads are based on power and cooling requirements, excess server capacity is powered off when not needed, and systems are being used as virtual desktops during the day and for batch processing during the night.”