Data Center

Data Center Old and New Tech

data-center-smallLately as in the past month, especially over the holidays, I’ve immersed myself in data center challenges and the technologies that try to address these challenges.

Topics ranging from

  1. Physical infrastructure
  2. Virtual infrastructure (VMware, Contrail, Security, Orchestration)
  3. Network infrastructure (Fabrics and non-Fabrics)
  4. Storage performance (Disk-IOPS, Array-IOPS)
  5. Storage devices (DAS, NAS, SAN-Array)
  6. Storage backup (Physical and Virtual)

I’m running through some of this and it’s a refresher while other topics are cutting edge (ref: Contrail).  It’s been roughly two years and seven months since having direct-touch operational experience with some of the solution technologies above.  I believe a lot has evolved in this short time.  My travel on these topics is uphill as I don’t feel I’ve mastered anything other than an awareness of how much work lays ahead of me.

Why am I putting myself through such a bother revisiting these technologies (the old tech that is), because I don’t believe you can address a customer’s needs, that is position a solution, without first having a rich understanding of where they have been, where they are today, and where they want to be in the future.

Selling boxes is easy, addressing challenges and selling with appropriate solutions requires effort.

My .02-cents

Calculating System Thermal Output

The Internet abounds with information on the topic of thermal output.

I’ve collected the following formulas and placed them here for my quick reference.

Watts

=

0.293

*

BTU-Hr

Watts

=

3,530

*

Tons

BTU-Hr

=

3.41

*

Watts

Tons

=

0.000283

*

Watts

 

For example,

  • PacketLight PL-1000TN Optical Transport Unit PSU rated at 70 watts is
    238.7 BTU-Hr = 3.41 * 70 watts
  • HP ProLiant DL120 Generation 7 (G7) PSU rated at 570 watts is
    1943.7 BTU-Hr = 3.41 * 570 watts
  • Dell PowerEdge R410 Rack Server with Non-Redundant PSU rated at 480 watts is
    1636.8 BTU-Hr = 3.41 * 480 watts

Volts will change the wattage; consider the following calculation.

Power (watts) = Voltage (volts) * Current (amperes)

If you are looking for information on sizing the thermal footprint of a datacenter there are other factors to take into consideration in addition to server and network equipment.

For example,

  • People (see note 1)
  • Lighting
  • Powered devices (non-IT gear)
  • Windows (sun light)
  • Heat conduction via exterior (outside) facing walls
  • Raised/non-raised floor
  • Humidity

When I set out to research the formula for determining a system’s thermal output I found myself caught up in the additional information I came across.  To me that’s like finding $5 bill in my pocket.

Note 1
There is general agreement that the human body will produce ~100 watts.  The following link has a brief discussion on the topic – interesting I thought.
http://hypertextbook.com/facts/2003/WeiLiangMok.shtml