What is a data center? Simple explanation with an example

What is a data center? Simple explanation with an example

September 28, 2022 6:47 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Data centers are kind of mysterious to a lot of people. You might hear the term cloud. The cloud these days is kind of an ambiguous term where you have some storage that’s available in the cloud. Well, the cloud is a data center. So what we’re doing at Infinite Networks Inc. for a lot of our customers is we’re helping them build and grow their clouds. A lot of our customers, large and small, have different forms of the cloud they’re building.

Data Centers for Small Businesses

Smaller customers may be utilizing colos (Colocations) like Equinix and other smaller cage spaces within a larger data center that is just dedicated to them. These data centers are very high-tech buildings. They get redundant power systems and redundant cooling systems and they’re overbuilt basically to be able to provide high availability to their customers. What that means is that a customer may have a few servers in one rack.

Well, if something causes that one rack power strip to go down, they’re not going to lose power to that server because they have a redundant power system built in and a secondary power strip on a secondary circuit. And a lot of these data centers actually have more than just one backup.

There are several backups, and there are different tiers of these data centers based on the redundancy and their high availability. Typically, you’re looking for five nines. So five nines availability means that your data center services are up and running 99.999% of the time, which leaves very little room for error.

Data centers for Large Businesses

Other customers such as large tech companies, they’re building out their own data centers, so they’re not sharing space within a Colo facility.

They’re just building out their own specialized data centers. In those types of environments, we’re typically installing and designing structured cabling systems to connect their core network infrastructure to their network switches, maybe top-of-rack switches that are out in the different rows. We’ve built out data center spaces and computer rooms with 700-800 cabinets. These 700-800 cabinets are basically server racks. Server racks are 6ft tall and loaded with high-performance servers with connectivity.

A lot of times it’s connectivity at the top of the cabinet so you have, like Cat6 or fiber optic cabling that’s connecting to the top of a rack network switch. The top-of-rack network switch may be then connected through high-performance fiber optic cabling to a core switch, which is a much larger switch that may take up half of a rack, which may be 3-4ft tall. Those systems are built for high availability so these are just redundant core networks.

That’s kind of the basis of data center networking. There are small data centers that may be on-premise, a customer may have it at their commercial office location rather than in some specialized computer room data center. 

How Does Infinite Networks Inc. Help?

Infinite Networks Inc. helps customers define their needs. We help them find and assess locations that work well for them. We also perform a risk analysis. A lot of times geographical or other natural disasters are common in certain areas. One of the other things that we help our clients do is attain high availability. A customer may have a presence across the United States, so we will help them find data center locations in metro areas that will benefit them.  These locations can be in New Jersey, Ashburn, Virginia on the East Coast, or they can be in Silicon Valley or Los Angeles, or Reno, Nevada on the West Coast. Those are some examples of providing high availability and redundancy using multiple locations across the US.

Data Center Infrastructure – Planning, Design, and Installing

Are you looking to design and install a Data Center for your business? Infinite Networks Inc. has years of experience and expertise in planning, designing, building, and maintaining Data Center Infrastructure.  

You can discuss your Data Center requirements with our experts by scheduling a review call or request for a quote from our team.

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This post was written by sandeepa nayak

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