What is a Data Centre?
Data centre refers to a facility housing computers, storage and communications equipment, typically serving a large enterprise or government organization. The term was introduced in the days when enterprise computing revolved around large mainframes whose physical size, power and cooling requirements demanded a specialized central facility. While this model is still common, the term can also apply to the department that manages these resources, even though they may be distributed.
With the increased reliance on IT operations and big data within Canadian organizations, data centres have taken on a large role when it comes to information management. With such dependability on modern technology as part of day-to-day operations, companies' concern for data backup and contingency plans have evolved because of the need to be able to operate in light of a system failure while still having access to important information. If their system goes down, they still need a method to access data through a backup system or they could lose significant productivity. This is where data centres come in.
What are data centres and what do they do?
A data centre is a facility that is used to operate large and oversized computer systems and related components, typically for large organizations. They can be housed on site, but are commonly housed offsite and serve as a backup system.
In most cases, data centres are used for the following:
To house large computer systems
- To serve as computer storage systems
- As telecommunications hubs
- To provide backup power supplies
- To house redundant data files
- To provide environmental control
- To house security systems
The truth is that many of the modern data centres that exist are owned and operated by internet companies to house their own servers. For example, Google has a number of data centres across the United States to house its operations and to provide more effective and fast services to its users. Therefore, if your company is large enough, you may want to consider developing your own data centre rather than using a service-based structure.
Data centre features
Data centres offer companies a number of features and capabilities to assist them with their systems and servers. Core features include:
Space for large dedicated servers and data storage units
- State of the art security to protect your system and data
- Climate control to ensure there is an ideal environment for your equipment
- Protection from fire and flood
- Large generators to ensure there is an unlimited supply of power without interruption
- Highly reliable networks to ensure maximum uptime
Why companies use data centres
There are a number of reasons why companies are increasingly using data centres as part of their normal operations. They include:
They act as a backup and provide support in case of a power disruption or system failure
- More and more companies are using the Internet and related technology to conduct business. As a result, there is an increased need to house data.
- You need to have a backup and a disaster recovery plan in place
- With increased important on computing, companies need to take measures to properly storage and protect servers from damage, theft, and infiltration.
- To ensure their system maintains a high level of reliability.
Data centre services
Data centres not only house computer systems, they also offer companies a number of information management services. Some of the most common include:
Dedicated servers: With these servers, servers are dedicated to your company only, are custom build and use the operating system and programs required by your organization.
- Managed services: This service allows companies to centralize their business network, allowing employees to work remotely and provide back up and load balancing services. With this option, companies often also use administration, security, network and business continuity services.
- Colocation services: These services are ideal for large companies that require substantial space. They can have custom cages built to meet space and power requirements while maintaining complete control of the equipment.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010Red Hat support to cover Amazon's cloud Premium subscribers of Red hat Cloud Access will be able to move servers between the data centre and the cloud
Monday, April 19, 2010Why not iSCSI? The 10-year-old protocol still doesn't get respect. But if you have it in your network, experts say, its just as capable of converging or unifying data center servers, storage and networking as Fibre Channel over Ethernet
Friday, March 26, 2010VIDEO: IBM exec on Z/Linux’s past, present, future ComputerWorld Canada visited IBM’s Poughkeepsie plant in New York, the site of much of the company’s mainframe development and manufacturing. IBM's Tom Rosamilia on the decade-long success of Linux on System Z; Canadian Master the Mainframe Contest winner Yeming Hu
Thursday, March 25, 2010IBM marks 10 years of Linux on SystemZ During celebrations at its Poughkeepsie plant of a decade of opening its mainframe to run Linux apps, a Canadian student is recognized as a winner of the 2009 Master the Mainframe Contest. An exec explains why the mainframe is “middle-aged”
Wednesday, March 17, 2010Fusepoint offers Hyper-V support to private clouds Already supporting VMware environments, the managed infrastructure provider is now broadening its scope to Microsoft shops. Mytrack Health System and Bridgewater Systems discuss their use of managed services
Friday, March 12, 2010How to get application performance insight To monitor the health of business transactions, you need to know what part of the transaction takes place where, and the impact of the component's performance. Network packet inspection isn't good enough. Application performance management tools are the solution
Monday, March 01, 2010Net Optics unleashes 40G network tap Taps have grown out of favour over the years, replaced by mirror ports on switches. However, the California company believes when demand for 40G in the data centre increases it will be ready
Thursday, February 25, 2010Gartner releases 2010 end user predictions A new set of predictions by Gartner foresees that 20 per cent of businesses will not own any IT assets by 2012. This is not just about the data centre; user PCs will also be part of an infrastructure service
Monday, February 22, 2010How D.C.'s IT dept. handled massive winter storms When back-to-back storms smothered the U.S. capitol, social network tools such as Twitter helped keep the city's data centre running
Friday, February 05, 2010IBM will inch up heat in new data centre Huge facility will rely on outside air for cooling for more than half the year. The company expects it will be among the most effecient data centres in the world
Tuesday, February 02, 2010City of Coquitlam rolls out services-oriented storage The need to support growing online services and app and database requirements led Coquitlam, B.C. to deploy storage virtualization from Hitachi Data Systems Canada so it could scale and manage a heterogeneous storage landscape. Where storage virtualization is headed according to IDC Canada
Wednesday, January 27, 2010Peer 1 unveils flagship data centre in Toronto The Vancouver-based infrastructure services provider is opening its third data centre in Toronto in the spring of 2010. The design is the template for future facilities and is the first to offer all three of Peer 1’s core offerings. WITH VIDEO
Thursday, January 21, 2010Data center density hits the wall There's a power crisis in the data centre: The latest servers use less power than previous models, but more can be crammed into a rack. Can the current infrastructure keep things cool?
Wednesday, January 13, 2010Microsoft, HP unveil ‘breakthrough’ stack integration Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard are investing US$250 million over three years towards an integrated infrastructure to application approach for customers. But one IDC Canada analyst said the strategy is not that unique
Monday, January 11, 2010SMEs dominate data centre activity: Symantec Symantec’s annual State of the Data Centre report shows mid-sized enterprises expect the greatest degree of change in their data centre environments as they deploy technologies to tackle complexity. IDC Canada predicts 2010 will be the year of smarter storage
Tuesday, January 05, 2010CAA division outsources data centre The CAA’s South Central Ontario chapter will consolidate a pair of off-site and in-house data centre locations into a single Q9 Networks co-location. Find out why the company decided to go the outsourcing route
Friday, December 18, 2009New HP NonStop features for better system manageability Platform enhancements include NonStop BladeCluster Express 1.2 for better system performance, NonStop SOAP 4.0 for better data integration, and upgraded NonStop SQL 2.3 for improved service levels
Thursday, December 17, 200910 IDC tech predictions for 2010 2010 is the year for private clouds, a hot data centre and mobile device market, banking system rationalization, new outsourcing models, and more according to IDC. Plus, HP identifies three areas IT managers will spend money on
Friday, December 04, 2009Extreme unveils switching blueprint for virtual data centers The switch manufacturer is supporting hypervisors from VMware and plans to let its hardware move virtual machine policies across the network. Why Extreme does not plan to move switching functions to the server
Wednesday, December 02, 2009HP offers Matrix templates for Microsoft apps Hewlett-Packard is offering its HP BladeSystem Matrix templates to make it easier for Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 and Windows Server 2008 R2 to integrate with its new HP Converged Infrastructure architecture announced last month
Monday, November 23, 2009Q9 and Alpha Trading ecosystem addresses latency Alpha Trading Systems has partnered with data centre services provider Q9 Networks to let subscribers of its exchange platform co-locate their own equipment in the same data centre. One analyst said that as cloud communities get more popular, attention must be paid to disaster recovery. WITH VIDEO
Friday, November 13, 2009Get serious about green: David Suzuki At the Earth Friendly IT Event, hosted by Hitachi Data Systems, environmentalist David Suzuki said the IT sector will be forced to respond if businesses are made to pay a carbon tax. How placing a price on natural resources will change how businesses operate. WITH VIDEO
Thursday, November 12, 2009Analyst predicts HP ProCurve will drop its routers Frost & Sullivan’s Ronald Gruia says with its acquisition of 3Com, Hewlett Packard will get a broader set of networking products, plus the TippingPoint intrusion prevention systems. Get the reaction from Canadian users and analysts
Thursday, November 12, 2009HP to buy 3Com in networking, data centre bid The surprise deal worth US$2.7 billion is designed to bring more Ethernet strength and routing systems to HP's broad enterprise lineup.
Wednesday, November 04, 2009HP's new architecture tackles IT sprawl Hewlett-Packard announced HP Converged Infrastructure architecture and HP Converged Infrastructure Consulting Services based on a new architecture to reduce customer footprint while allowing for new business. One analyst said big technology vendors like HP finally get it