Data CenterDid you know the energy used to power the data centers in the U.S. alone is almost at 2% of our total usage?

Expertly installed data center racks can reduce cooling needs and optimize storage space. Google is combating this issue by allegedly building a data center on a barge that runs on power obtained by the sea!

You do not have to go to such extremes to organize a data center that suits the needs of your company, however a little creativity may go a long way. Data storage is an important issue for most companies today, it is often a trick to achieve a balance between making the most of every inch, and keeping valuable equipment safe and cool.

How Do Data Center Racks Work?

Data center racks are physical steel and electronic frameworks that are made especially to house servers, networking devices, cables and other data center computing equipment in a manner that will keep them secure, cool, and constantly powered. This should allow quick access when needed and optimal security and integrity the rest of the time. A quality data center rack will ensure the performance of the servers by allowing optimal air flow, and fail-safe cooling options, as well as redundancy in power sources and security.

Server cabinets are often used as smaller more portable ways to store servers. They also provide a safe environment for equipment such as servers that generate heat and need steady reliable power and cooling. They can also be used in a larger data center rack configuration.

Open racks are a vital part of a data center rack configuration. They are customizable to the amount of equipment needed to be stored, and have wire configuration and power options.

The more extensive the center the more complex cooling, powering, and securing needs can get. Some data centers are huge, like the barge mentioned above which will only be one of Google’s centers. Or Facebook’s massive 30,000 server center. Running a place like that requires team of techs, perfect temperature and humidity control and hundreds of data racks. Luckily you likely will not need such a massive project.

Data Center

Should You Consider Reconfiguring Your Data Center Racks?

Optimal storage and energy-efficiency with data centers may be a key issue, however data center racks today provide so many space and energy-efficient options that finding a solution for any server load is possible. It may be time to reconfigure your data center if your servers are running, hot, slow, or become dusty. Reorganizing a system and updating fans, wires, and some servers may end up saving you space, time, and money.

What Does The “U” Mean When Planning for Data Storage?

The term “U” refers to a Rack Unit or RU. 1U takes up 1.75″ of vertical space. U is standard for measuring usable space, or the height of the racks.  It actually refers to the space between the shelves though. Racks, cabinets, and equipment can all be measured in as RU, or U. Most professional equipment is 19 inches. Keep this in mind when deciding exactly how much space you need to set aside. You do not want your equipment to be too close together to allow for airflow and cooling, yet you want to make the most of the space you have. Make sure to allow for a few inches behind each server or piece of equipment to store cables as well.

Write for UsKatrina answers all your racking How-To’s for Rack Solutions.