At Work

Reducing control room risk: keeping SNAFUs at bay

It’s a given among data center professionals that the control room is at the heart of everything that happens.  A properly run control room monitors the center’s devices, their functionality and ensures that the applications and data contained on the machines are constantly available.  It’s one thing to have a device or system monitored by the control room go down; it’s another to have the control room itself cease functioning…that’s a recipe for a true data disaster, the kind that no company can afford.

Which explains why so many professionals are likely to lose sleep over how to reduce the risk involved in keeping their control rooms up and running.  The chances are pretty good that, at one point or another, you’ve been one of them.

We’d like to suggest three key ways you can reduce your control room risk, and in doing so, improve your uptime capability:

  • Increase the flexibility for accessing and managing your computing resources
  • Create an environment that’s designed to minimize unscheduled downtime and reduce the Mean Time to Repair (MTTR)
  • Leverage centralized remote management to lower the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)

Flexibility in the control room does not mean “anything goes,” mind you; it does refer to the ability to remotely access and manage your resources in a way that best meets your security and operational needs.  Often, that may mean moving devices into a highly secure data center, where they can be better protected from potential risks in a way that increases uptime and reliability.  Experts will remind you that in this scenario, remote management should include centralized authentication and access controls, so that you can govern who has access to which machines and information.

Remote management also enables you to centralize your resources in a remote location, where you can control temperature, moisture and access.    It also enables you to cut your costs by sharing resources efficiently and seamlessly, which gives your IT staff more time to do really important stuff instead of scurrying around when something goes wrong.

Remote management and access enable you to:

  • Centralize your systems in a secure, environmentally controlled location
  • Efficiently share your expensive equipment and enable collaboration
  • Activate a redundant failover within seconds, making sure your systems stay up and running

There’s more, of course.   At Emerson Network Power, we’ve developed a short paper, which addresses these three key steps to drive risk from your control room.