is the collection of tasks performed by those responsible for managing ongoing operation of adata center

Historically,data center managementwas seen as something performed by employees, with the help of tools collectively calledData Center Infrastructure Management(DCIM) tools.3Now an outsourcing option exists:Data-center Management As A Service-DMaaS.4

Both for in-house operation and outsourcing,Service-level agreementsmust be managed to ensure data-availability.5

Data center management is a growing major topic for a growing list of large companies who both compete and cooperate:

Hardware/software vendors who are willing to live withcoopetition910are working on projects such as The Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF)11with a goal of learning to more effectively manage mixed Linux, Windows and cloud environments.

With theDMTFa decade old, the list of companies is growing, and also includes companies much smaller than IBM, Microsoft, et al.12

Among the topics currently being explored are:13

Business service management(BSM) treats IT as part of the larger enterprise strategy,17and helps fill the gap between Business & IT.18

IBM notes that major problems often happen in the grey areas, particularly due to errors in the interfaces, and focuses on critical failures. Sufficient redundancy should allow failures in non-critical areas to protect the business from being affected.18

promotes acustomer-centricand business-focused approach toservice management, aligning business objectives with IT or ICT from strategy through tooperations

is positioned aboveIT Service Management(ITSM)

Remote Data Center Management21allows offsite experts to watch for situations needing their timely intervention at a lower cost than having such staff be onsite 24/7/365.

Furthermore, there is more recognition that while some requirements for on-site hardware have been reduced,22spending in other hardware areas such asUPSmay have to increase.23

Data center asset management(also referred to asinventory management)24is the set of business practices that join financial, contractual and inventory functions to supportlife cycle managementand strategic decision making for the IT environment. Assets include all elements ofsoftwareandhardwarethat are found in the business environment.25

Hardware asset management entails the management of the physical components of computers andcomputer networks, from acquisition through disposal. Common business practices include request and approval process,procurementmanagement,life cyclemanagement, redeployment and disposal management. A key component is capturing the financial information about the hardware life cycle which aids the organization in making business decisions based on meaningful and measurable financial objectives.

Software Asset Managementis a similar process, focusing on software assets, including licenses. Standards for this aspect of data center management are part ofISO/IEC 19770.

IT asset management generally uses automation, to manage the discovery of assets, so inventory can be compared to license entitlements. Full business management of IT assets requires a repository of multiple types of information about the asset, as well as integration with other systems such assupply chainhelp deskprocurementand HR systems and ITSM.

Data center infrastructure management(DCIM) is the integration26of information technology (IT) and facility management disciplines27to centralize monitoring, management and intelligentcapacity planningof a data centers critical systems. Achieved through the implementation of specialized software, hardware and sensors, DCIM enables common, real-time monitoring and management platform for all interdependent systems across IT and facility infrastructures.

DCIM products can help data center managers identify and eliminate sources ofrisk28and improve availability of critical IT systems. They can also be used to identify interdependencies between facility and IT infrastructures to alert the facility manager to gaps in system redundancy, and provide dynamic, holistic benchmarks on power consumption and efficiency to measure the effectiveness of green IT initiatives.2930

Its important to measure and understand data center metrics, including those regarding energy efficiency and utilization of servers, storage, and staff. In too many cases, disc capacity is vastly under-utilized and servers run at 20% utilization or less.31More effective automation tools can also improve the number of servers or virtual machines that a single admin can handle.

DCIM providers are increasingly linking withcomputational fluid dynamicsproviders to predict complex airflow patterns in the data center. The CFD component is necessary to quantify the impact of planned future changes on cooling resilience, capacity and efficiency.32

Information technology operations, orIT operations, are the set of all processes and services that are both provisioned by anITstaff33to their internal or externalclientsand used by themselves, to run themselves as abusiness. The term refers to the application ofoperations managementto a businesss technology needs.34

Operations work can include responding toticketsgenerated for maintenance work or customer issues.35Some operations teams rely onon-callresponses to incidents during off-hours periods.35

Aslights outoperations increased, less of the staff are located near corporate headquarters.3637Gartnerdefines IT operations as the people and management processes associated with IT service management to deliver the right set of services at the right quality and at competitive costs for customers.38

Corporate help desks39often arrange theirTech Supportstructure as a three-tier (plus two) system:40

Tier 1: Basic help desk – initialpoint of contact, including software opening a

. Information available to its personnel includeFAQand a basicknowledge base.

Access to varying levels of support for products and services to in-house employees and corporate customers, providing information andtroubleshooting41is via various channels such as toll-free numbers,42websites, instant messaging, or email.

AnITIL-compliant help desk is usually a part of a biggerService deskunit, which is part ofITSM43

As the incoming phone calls are random in nature, help desk agent schedules are often maintained using anErlang Ccalculation.

Companies with customapplication softwaremay also have an applications team who are responsible for the development of in-house software. The help desk may assign to the applications team such problems as findingsoftware bugs. Requests for new features or information about the capabilities of in-house software that come through the help desk are also assigned to applications groups.

The help desk staff and supportingITstaff may not all work from the same location. Withremote access applications, technicians are able to solve many help desk issues from another work location or their home office. While there is still a need for on-site support to effectively collaborate on some issues, remote support provides greater flexibility.

Technical support(often shortened totech support) refers toservices. Some fee-based service companies charge for premium technical support services.44

Some companies and organizations providediscussion boardsfor users of their products to interact; such forums allow companies to reduce their support costs45without losing the benefit of customer feedback.

Many organizations relocated their technical support departments or call centers to countries or regions with lower costs.Dellwas amongst the first companies to outsource their technical support and customer service departments to India in 2001, but thenreshored.46There has also been a growth in companies specializing in providing technical support to other organizations. These are often referred to as MSPs (Managed Service Providers).47

For businesses needing to provide technical support,outsourcingallows them to maintain a high availability of service. Such need may result from peaks in call volumes during the day, periods of high activity due to introduction of new products or maintenance service packs, or the requirement to provide customers with a high level of service at a low cost to the business. For businesses needing technical support assets,outsourcingenables their core employees to focus more on their work in order to maintain productivity.48It also enables them to utilize specialized personnel whose technicalknowledge baseand experience may exceed the scope of the business, thus providing a higher level of technical support to their employees.

A common scam typically involves acold callerclaiming to be from a technical support department of a company likeMicrosoft. Such cold calls are often made fromcall centersbased inIndiato users inEnglish-speaking countries, although increasingly these scams operate within the same country. The scammer will instruct the user to download aremote desktopprogram and once connected, usesocial engineeringtechniques that typically involveWindowscomponents to persuade the victim that they need to pay in order for the computer to be fixed and then proceeds to steal money from the victims credit card.49

Preventive maintenance(orpreventative50maintenance(PM)) is ongoing scheduled51inspection52intended todetectand correct incipient failures either before they occur or before they develop into major problems such as downtime.

With the increasing use of the cloud and what has been called the Era of Infinite Capacity,53there is still a need for professional Data Center Capacity Planners.54

There is a need to know what will be needed, and when.55Data must continually be collected regarding usage of power/energy, computing power, data storage and networking/telecommunications. Plans must include awareness of cooling and space requirements.

Sometimes analysis of this data, and comparison to industry norms, can beoutsourced.55The balance for the need to focus more on data collection56or analysis depends on current utilization levels: prior to 50%, the focus can stay more on data collection. Beyond 75%, the focus must shift to analysis, in preparation for upgrades, replacements and expansions. The data center is a resource in its own right.57

According to Cloudscenes Leaderboard for Q1 2018, data center operators are ranked based on both data center density (total operated data centers), as well as the number of listed service providers in the facility. Cloud service providers are ranked based on connectivity (the total number of PoPs) for the region. Chosen from a pool of more than 6,000 providers, the rankings are as follows:58

What Startups in Amazons Ecosystem Should Learn From VMware.

Ann Bednarz (May 24, 2018).Data center management – What does DMaaS deliver that DCIM doesnt.

The future of Data Center Management: From DCIM to DMaaS.

Dell Makes Moves to Survive in Cloud-Centric World.

Google and I.B.M. Join in Cloud Computing Research.

Yahoo, Intel and HP Form Cloud Computing Labs.

The Online Travel Landscape Is Getting Crowded.

… which Internet analysts love to call coopetition..

Meeting virtualization management challenges.

The Times article mentions a crop of next-tier vendors, start-ups and open source players.

Matt Hancock (October 26, 2018).Power struggle.

a row is brewing over an EU plan to curb datacentre energy use

David Gewirtz (May 30, 2017).The astonishing hidden and personal costs of IT downtime (and how predictive analytics might help).

Flights Cancelled for more than 75,000 passengers.

A. K. Ghose.The business service representation language

Bednarz (June 2010).Targeting hybrid IT environments.

Quentin Hardy (November 17, 2012).Hard Times Could Create a Tech Boom.

In 2014, Proactive UPS Maintenance is Essential for all Data Center Managers

UPS-redundant configurations, providing backups for backups that have their own backups.

IT Asset Management (ITAM)Gartner. May 18, 2013

Tracking All the Data: Data Center Infrastructure Management …

Data Center Infrastructure Management – Data Center Handbook.

Measure and manage the risk inherent in your IT infrastructure.

Tom Coughlin (September 9, 2018).Green Computing And Storage.

Mission: Green Computing by Supermicro Introduces Total Cost.

Measuring Data Center Efficiency: Easier Said Than Done. Archived fromthe originalon 2010-10-27

Computational-Fluid-Dynamic (CFD) Analysis Gartner IT Glossary.

What Do (Business, DevOps, People, Sales) Operations People Do?.

Site Reliability Engineering: How Google Runs Production Systems

Ashlee Vance (December 8, 2008).Dell Sees Double With Data Center in a Container.

By Quentin Hardy (October 30, 2012).An Update for the Corporate Help Desk.

Joe Hertvik (July 7, 2016).IT Support Levels Clearly Explained: L1, L2, L3, and More.

IT Help Desks Not Just For Large Enterprises.

Students – Information technology – Calvin College

Dell moves outsourced jobs back to U.S. shores

Berkley, Susan; Maggie Klenke.Call Centre Trends.

Perkins, Bart (2004-11-08).Outsourcing: First Ask Why?.

Arthur, Charles (18 July 2012).Virus phone scam being run from call centres in India.

Complaints about preventative go back to the late 18th century … (Oxford English Dictionary dates preventive to 1626 and preventative to 1655) ..preventive has won

Samir Mehra (September 11, 2018).Capacity Planning in the Era of Infinite Capacity.

Data Center Capacity Planner Jobs, Employment.

293 Data Center Capacity Planner jobs available on

Thomas A. Limoncelli; Strata R. Chalup; Christina J. Hogan.Room to grow: Tips for data center capacity planning.

since this consumes both computing and storage resources

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Cloudscene Rankings: Top Data Centers & Service Providers Worldwide.

This page was last edited on 9 June 2019, at 11:13

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