Data centers are the brains of an operation. They house vital information and store the hardwire necessary to conduct the technological processes that keep a company running. The term data center refers to a physical building that houses information technology equipment. They can range in size from tiny closets to gigantic dedicated buildings. Data centers are often referred to as server rooms.
Why They Exist
Technology is a vital component of many businesses. Companies rely on computer hardware to facilitate transactions, provide services, implement projects, and perform administrative functions. Data loss can severely delay business operations and cost companies big. In addition, confidentiality is of utmost importance in many businesses. It is important that they can guarantee the security of restricted data. For businesses operating cloud systems, this can be of even more importance. Data centers also allow companies to easily retrieve necessary data. For these reason, many companies are investing in data center solutions.
How They Work
Data centers vary in size but they are all made up of the same basic components. The design of data centers are components that are critical to their function. If companies keep functioning and collecting new data, their data storage needs will grow. It is essential that the facility used be scalable and allow the data center to grow along with any foreseeable growth for the company.
The amount of available space for IT equipment at a data center is called white space. Virtualization is allowing for more effective utilization of white space by maximizing that amount of data that can be held in one device. Good data centers are also designed to optimize the use of white space in terms of effective layout for physical storage. Data center location is also important. Since data centers deal with telecommunications technology, it is important to pick a location that is out of the way of potential disruptions like flight paths. Being closer to an internet service provider can also be an asset in terms of speed and functionality of some systems. Data centers contain all manner of information technology including computers, servers, firewalls, and routers. Since electronic devices run on power, the power supply is a vital component to a data center. Data centers use backup electrical systems to make sure that they stay functional in the event of a power outage. Electronics also have a tendency to overheat and are not compatible with moisture. Data centers strictly control temperature and humidity to make sure that computer servers and other hardware function at optimum capacity. In addition, most data centers are equipped with fire systems designed to put out flames quickly while damaging as little of the hardware as possible. Since security is a key function of data centers, access to them is strictly controlled. Data centers will at the very least have locked doors. More advanced data centers feature mantrap systems, key card entry, or fingerprint identification to control access.
Who They Work For
Data centers work for companies of all sizes. Any business can benefit from having secure, well organized data. That said, data storage needs vary widely by company. Smaller companies may only need some well-secured servers tucked away neatly in an office closet. For companies who want the security offered by a well-built data center with more features without the expense of building a facility themselves, there are a number of data center companies which rent space in their facilities to other businesses.When shopping for data center solutions, it is essential to have a clear vision of both your companies current data storage needs and any potential needs that may arise in the future.