We all know a data center requires servers and experienced, dedicated personnel, but what else does a data center need? Below, we’ll explain some of the more critical things that every data center needs to succeed.
A data center can be the home for loads of valuable and sensitive data about people, businesses, and even the state if it’s a government data center. Naturally, this data can be incredibly valuable to the right buyer, which makes data centers frequent targets for thieves.
Therefore, strict and considerable security measures for physical security, surveillance, and network protection are among the most important aspects of any data center. Every data center should have security measures that limit entry to key areas to only authorized personnel. Network security measures—such as firewalls, IDSs, and ACLs—are also essential for any data center’s network.
One of the more unheralded necessities of every data center is electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding. EMI shielding is essential in data centers, as they keep the numerous electronic signals emitting from the equipment in the center from interacting and disrupting one another.
With methods like vacuum metalization, EMI shielding protects valuable aspects of electronics by absorbing and deflecting EMI from other sources and ensures a clear, precise signal. Without adequate EMI shielding, operating a data center with so many servers and sources of EMI would be practically impossible.
Every data center also requires monitoring structures to thoroughly examine and monitor all the systems within the center for their health and upkeep. For one, these monitoring structures help save the center time and money by discovering maintenance problems at the outset before they manifest into larger issues. Also, a data center must monitor its power usage and bandwidth, server storage, and physical rack space to understand when it’s reaching its limits or has room to grow.
Often, data centers outsource these monitoring services to professional companies. This is so they can focus their personnel and resources on other data center matters and receive alerts and updates from the professionals when needed.
If there’s one thing every data center needs to succeed, it’s a quality cooling system. Anyone who knows anything about computers knows they can get hot. And with so many servers in one room, these computers can easily overheat and fail without adequate cooling systems.
These cooling systems are vital but also major power draws, which makes them costly and not very environmentally friendly. That’s why more data centers are experimenting with sustainable power cooling systems—such as solar power—and allowing outdoor air into the environment to cool. Whatever the center uses, what’s most important is keeping the many servers within at a cool and comfortable temperature.