Consolidation Is The Secret To A Healthy Transition

In an industry market like Singapore where pace is the name of the game, consolidation practices are integral to any organisation. Image Credit: Titan Power

In 2022, Singapore led an annual Cushman & Wakefield ranking for data center markets in the Asia Pacific, ranking second globally and tied with Silicon Valley. However, the report also mentioned the city as having one of the narrowest markets in the world, with vacancy rates below a startling two percent.

Everything Gets Rusty After Awhile.

Like any piece of tech, it is sad and inevitable that the efficiency of infrastructure networks gradually erodes over time. This can be due to a variety of factors such as the introduction of new hardware in the environment, or even updates to data legislation that require configuration changes. The point is this; some level of efficiency is always lost once a data center has been modified from its original construction. 

Facility managers and decision makers understand that all equipment has a finite life cycle and will eventually need to be completely replaced. In a place like Singapore, where digital demand is constantly increasing, this comprehension is especially important as the industry needs to keep up with its market. According to one report, between 2015 and 2020, the island state saw capacity growth of 768MW in just 14 installations, or in other words; around 150MW of new capacity added every year, an impressive reflection of the nation’s speed and demand.

Popular For A Reason- Many Reasons Actually!

Therefore, there are a number of actions that data center operators can take to optimise performance between the time a new data center is built and when an existing facility is decommissioned. A popular option, and dare say the best, is to undertake a consolidation project, with a Data Center Alliance report revealing up to 62 per cent of data centers going through a consolidation effort at one point to another in their lifespans.

Consolidation is a rightly attractive solution for several reasons. Primarily, the process can reduce costs by improving energy efficiency. Not only that, it also helps organisations diversify infrastructure by offloading much of their storage needs to a third-party colocation provider, all the while maintaining a limited on-premises storage option for more critical information; akin to a football manager resting his best players for bigger games.

As with any effective form of planning, the  secret to effective consolidation lies in foresight and prediction. Obtaining visibility over the impact of any potential change to the data center environment, without exposing business to the risk and expense of live testing is the goal, and fortunately, existing data center management software powered by engineering simulation offers a safe, swift and effective safety lab for operators to experiment with.

Scenarios such as deploying several cabinets of newer servers within a legacy data center can be simulated to establish how well this will work, and if not, how the resulting issues can be resolved. Similarly, factors such as local power, weight limits, or cooling can also be roped in and tested- all of which would make predictive estimation extremely hard without the existence of simulation tech. The technology optimises speed, accuracy and efficiency, running multiple scenarios with startling precision, cutting down potential project times from months to weeks or even days.

Thankful For 2022

In an industry market like Singapore where pace is the name of the game, consolidation through simulation offers the perfect balance of correctness and timescale. Operators need not worry of time lost and questions during the period of transition from an older, slowing facility to a new one- they can simply simulate the situation and take the best course of action.

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February 3, 2022