The last decade has brought considerable change to data centers. From innovations like cloud computing, edge and hyperscale data centers, to more tangible advances in flash storage and cooling techniques, data center architecture has seen its fair of rapid alterations.
So, what trends, advancements, and potential future technology do you need to consider when setting up the framework of your data center? Whether you’re setting up your architecture from scratch or overhauling an older building, consider the following aspects to data center architecture.
Architecture Should Be Dynamic
Modern trends put a lot of pressure on data centers to implement dynamic architecture. It not only allows for the agility to change and adapt to new technologies, but also leads to consistently high asset utilization.
And now data centers are dealing with new types of workloads like Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and Big Data. Which means that current data center structures are stretched to their limits to accommodate new workloads and require the need for rabid growth and scaling.
But what other trends effect the need for modern data center architecture to be more dynamic?
Edge computing has made its way to the forefront of a lot of discussions about the future of network structures. And, despite what decentralizing vast networks throughout the nation might mean, the cloud will not be replaced by edge computing.
Rather, just as edge computing aims to work in tandem to extend and improve the efficiency of data networks, it will also work in collaboration with cloud structures and data centers. Numerous edge data centers have already been constructed.
More organizations will go out of their way in the future to put their power structures closer to the edge – where data is generated and needs to travel. Especially as data consumption will only continue to rise.
All Flash Structures
SSD technology has advanced greatly in the last few years. So much so that there is a growing trend of the removal of the rows and rows of spinning disks that was so previously popular in favor of all-flash solutions.
In fact, Gartner analyst Valdis Filks predicted that by 2021, 50 percent of data centers will use SSAs for high-performance computing and big data workloads. Which is a 10 percent increase.
All-flash solutions are not only a viable, efficient solution, they’re also often much more affordable. All-flash solutions have proven to give users significant advantages in savings in terms of power and cooling.
If they’re not on your radar, all-flash solutions should definitely be on your radar for your data center’s structure for their efficiency alone.
Big Hype for Hyperscale
With edge and cloud computing beginning to dominate the market, data centers are forced to scale at an increasingly faster rate. One that calls for better hardware, management, and deployment methods.
Hyperscale data centers are becoming more frequent to counter the demand for more computing and storage capacity. This means putting the right data center efficiency plans in place – from hardware to power, and even floor space and cooling methods.
Hybrid Cloud is Still King
Though decentralization is definitely the future of data, that doesn’t mean the cloud is irrelevant. As we stated earlier, many of these new trends are being implemented to work in tandem with cloud initiatives, and the hybrid cloud continues to dominate data center design.
One of the best things about utilizing a hybrid cloud deployment is its versatility. Organizations of all sizes and growth capabilities are using hybrid cloud structures and will continue to do so.
And it seems that’s unlikely to change. Gartner again predicts that by next year, 90 percent of organizations will adopt hybrid infrastructure management capabilities. Though every market is different, and you’ll have to take a look at your own capabilities and business structure to decide where and how to deploy hybrid cloud initiatives.
Virtualization and SDI Have Their Limits
When it comes to better asset utilization and flexibility in data centers, virtual machines (VMs) and containerization are pushing current structures forward. Both methods can better utilize the server’s hardware by:
- Running multiple applications.
- Increasing management automation.
- Enabling rapid provisioning and load balancing.
- Packaging and deploying applications to servers in response to workload variations.
SDI helps to transform your data center infrastructure to become more like software. Extending the idea of hardware abstraction to include other aspects of infrastructure (beyond compute servers) like network switches, file servers, and storage clusters makes your entire data center network more programmable. Which means you have more control.
However, it has its limits. Specific hardware resources can’t be assembled on demand within servers from anywhere in the data center. But Composable Disaggregated Infrastructure (CDI) can help provide those missing links.
CDI-enabled Data Centers
What if you could individually and collectively manage all of the compute modules, non-volatile memory, storage, accelerators, and more within each server? Well, in CDI-enabled data centers, all of those individual parts are disaggregated into pools of shared resources, making that type of management possible.
From there the disaggregated components can become workload-optimized servers, regardless of which racks the components physically reside in. Once those components are composed or reconstituted under software-control. Now that’s efficiency.
That efficiency will result in savings for your organization and will help lead to:
- Faster scaling and growth.
- Better resource utilization.
- Custom configurations that lead to optimized performance.
- Dynamic workload tuning.
- More automated infrastructure management.
- Better, more efficient use of physical staff.
Tier one Cloud Service Providers like Google, Facebook, and Amazon Web Services are already actively investigating and implementing CDIs for their data centers. Your organization probably isn’t at the same growth or scale rate as those tier one CSPs, but that doesn’t mean the same CDI solutions can’t be helpful for you. Expect more suppliers to make CDI readily available for enterprise data centers of all sizes in the coming years.
When It’s Time to Restructure, Choose the Right ITAD Company
Major advances in technology will continue to shape how data centers are constructed. And as technology continues to advance and develop at an increasingly fast rate, organizations will need to adapt to ensure they take advantage of every new technology.
The right data center architecture will allow your business the opportunity to scale, grow, and remain dynamic in an ever-changing world. In essence, you can future-proof your business.
Keep an eye on the major IT, tech, and data-providing organizations and be aware of how new trends in data storage and sharing can affect how your data center is structured. And if an upgrade or renovation to your data center requires a full on data center decommission, be sure to enlist the help of a certified IT asset disposition company.
At Exit Technologies, we offer full IT equipment services ranging from asset recovery, network equipment sales and recycling, data erasure, and full data center decommission services.
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