Is This Common Mistake Killing Your Storage Hardware?

3 server cabinets in a row with a thermometer next to them showing a high temperature

Posted on Thursday, September 26, 2019

Component failure is a standard part of operating a busy data center. When dealing with assets that are working 24/7/365, breakdowns are inevitable.

This is not to say that IT managers should simply accept every failure at face value, especially if you notice breakdowns occurring more frequently than usual– this would indicate another factor is in play.

Is your data center heating up?

It is entirely possible that your data center was designed to cope with maximum capacity of the day. Over time, rack density has increased, squeezing more drives and processors into each chassis. This has caused temperatures to rise in the rack. 

Unless you have been periodically re-engineering your HVAC system, temperatures will have been rising in the rest of the data center, too. This increases risk of failure of all your assets– not just those in the rack.

As density increases, make sure your HVAC provisions are able to generate sufficient cooling to cope with the additional heat generated. This is extremely important because the number one cause of component failure is heat. 

Planning for the future

Future data storage media like DNA will help shrink the physical data center footprint and boost capacity and density. At the same time, cooling will become even more important.

Scientists are experimenting with how best to handle synthetic DNA storage media with suspension in glass being one proposed solution. For longer term storage however, the DNA strands need to be stored at low temperature, between -4ºF (-20ºC) and -112ºF (-80ºC). Failure to maintain these temperatures could compromise your data, rendering it irretrievable.

DNA storage is still some years away, but IT managers need to master data center cooling now. Not only will it help to reduce failure rates now, but it will also lay the foundations for changing data center design needs in future.

To find out more about what partnering with CDS can help you achieve, get in touch.

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