Large organizations use some data centers to centralize their shared IT operations and equipment to store, process, and disseminate the data and applications that the organization operates. It is vital for the continuity of the day-to-day operations of an organization to maintain the continuity of its data centers since they house the company’s most critical and proprietary assets. Therefore, any organization should prioritize the security and reliability of its data centers and the information stored therein.
Since the public cloud was introduced, the traditional model of data centers as highly controlled physical infrastructures has been replaced by the new model of public clouds. As a result, most modern data centers have evolved from physical servers on-premises to virtualized infrastructure that supports applications and workloads across multiple clouds, except in cases where regulatory requirements require an on-premises data center without internet connections.
The Core Components of a Data Center
There can be a wide range of differences in the architectures and requirements of data centers. For example, compared to a completely private data center, such as one built for a government facility dedicated to securing classified data, a data center made for a cloud service provider like Amazon has facility, infrastructure, and security requirements that are significantly different.
Data centers consist of the following components:
The amount of space that can be used for IT equipment. There is no doubt that data centers are among the world’s most energy-intensive structures as they provide access to data round the clock. Therefore, the equipment design is geared towards maximizing the available space and controlling the environment to keep the equipment within specified temperature and humidity ranges.
Storage of data and applications and equipment for IT operations. In addition to storage systems, servers, and the network infrastructure, such as switches and routers, these may also be comprised of various information security elements, such as firewalls, that help protect the information.
In recent years, data centers have undergone a significant evolution. Data center infrastructure is shifting from on-premises servers to virtualized infrastructure that can support workloads across pools of physical infrastructure and multi-cloud environments as enterprise IT needs shift toward on-demand services.
Types Of Data Centers
Despite the varying size, data centers, from small server rooms to a cluster of geographically distributed buildings, all share a common characteristic: they are critical business assets where companies often invest in and deploy the latest technology in data center networking, computing, and storage.
As the data center has evolved from an on-premises infrastructure to one seamlessly connected to multiple private and public clouds, networks, applications, and workloads are virtualized.
- Enterprise data centers are typically built and used for the internal purposes of a single company and are usually owned or operated by that company. In the world of technology giants, these are standard practices.
- The colocation data center is a type of rental property where the space and resources of a data center are made available to people who wish to rent them every month.
- Managed service data centers are organizations that provide services such as data storage, computing, and other services to their customers on a third-party basis.
- Cloud data centers are typically distributed across the globe and are sometimes provided to customers as part of a managed service plan offered by a third-party provider.
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