IT Focus Area: infrastructure operations
October 31, 2014
What is the Biggest Data Center Design Mistake?
Many data center managers and facilities teams focus on expanding floor space versus expanding their compute power. They may think, “We have 10,000 square feet now, which means we’ll need 15,000 square feet to cover our future IT needs.”
This thinking is flawed.
Many companies base their estimates on what current floor space they have and calculate future space needs based on the growth rate that has occurred to date.
There are two issues with this approach:
1. The assumption is based on the premise that the current floor space is being maximized.
2. The assumption that your data center should grow horizontally with more floor space rather than grow up with better use of your vertical space.
For example, you can get better use out of a cabinet if you support 10kW of equipment, as opposed to 4kW. This maximizes your vertical space so you don’t need to expand horizontally.
It’s important to look at every part of your data center (i.e. power, network, cooling, floor space, etc.). Then, strengthen all of these components at the same time. Focusing only on floor space is like the guy at the gym who only weight trains his chest and arms. You don’t want to be the top-heavy guy with the puny legs.
To learn more about how to avoid data center design mistakes, The Essential Guide to the Data Center Facility of the Future.