The inexorable ‘cloud drift’ has failed to live up to many businesses’ expectations.
Benefits such as lower cost, responsiveness, resilience and a smaller carbon footprint may be elusive in the cloud while constraints such as server room suitability, office-space leases and power backup may frustrate workload repatriation.
A consensus is emerging between information technology executives, their operational technology colleagues and the lines of business that there must be a better way — but what is it?
The ‘micro data centre’ with its self-contained power, backup and cooling based on an industry-standard and technology-agnostic platform offers the power, performance and peace of mind that businesses crave at a competitive price.
Why can’t our data continue in the cloud or hosted in an off-site data centre?
Cloud and off-site architectures bump up against physical limits such as distance, reliability, physical access and bandwidth that may limit their effectiveness and suitability.
In response, ‘edge computing’ locates compute and storage at the network extremities where workloads are created. The lower latency speeds execution and lifts resilience because external network links don’t hobble performance. It’s especially attractive for an emerging class of ‘internet of things’ or IoT applications in a wide range of industry sectors and specialties.
Using edge, a factory production line monitored by an on-site pattern recognition system identifies product defects in real time. A healthcare provider with a micro data centre may rapidly diagnose a patient’s health from radiography scans captured, stored and processed on-site, or use machine learning to assist with robotic surgery. And while a tiny subset of exceptions may be exported for investigation, time-critical applications preclude a cloud-mandated approach.
The smart alternative is to leverage the relative strengths of edge (or on-premises) with off-site infrastructure in the cloud/or and a traditional data centre. So Australian businesses are deploying on-premises micro data centres without the physical footprint or remediation of a traditional server room. Other benefits of an on-premises or edge micro data centre include:
- Portable – Roll it away to take it wherever you go.
- Scalable – Add or subtract devices and racks as you need them.
- Plug ‘n’ play – Potentially just connect electricity and data cables.
- Drop ‘n’ go – Locate where you have spare on-premise floor space.
- Location agnostic – Operates in harsh conditions even outside or in a shipping container.
- Slash costs – Preserve budget otherwise squandered on server rooms.
- Cut CO2 – high efficiency cooling solutions reduce carbon footprint even for small scale solutions
- Rapid deployment, recovery and resilience – Modular ‘building brick’ design slots together fast to deploy quickly.
- Peace of mind — All-in-one units lock-up and go in hardened enclosures with automatic door opening, access control, fire detection and suppression monitored for physical security and environment.
- Edge-ready – Stage workloads, where and when you want them at network edge for IoT.
Do we have to replace our infrastructure and architecture?
The good news is a micro data centre augments your existing IT so you choose how, where and when to manage your workloads.
And based on the open industry standard 19-inch form factor, Rittal’s micro data centre platform ‘RiMatrix NG’ is both future-proof and ‘legacy aware’. A modular design inside and out, it slots into and around any infrastructure you may ever have.
As a self-contained solution that handles cooling, power reticulation and backup in the rack, a Rittal micro data centre requires no remediation of the server room. They can even be deployed out-of-doors or in a shipping container in harsh, dusty and hostile environments.
And designed with an eye for the future, Rittal’s unique platform will grow and evolve with you. It simplifies physical integration into your built environment and dovetails with underused spaces such as warehouse or plant rooms.
Here are examples of how a Rittal micro data centre has solved Australian businesses’ unique challenges:
- TIC Group — The Victorian reverse logistics provider needed a ‘pick-up-and-go’ solution that would travel with the business when it moved. Rittal’s solution delivered a micro data centre at lower cost, complexity and physical size than a traditional server room without modifying its built environment.
- Gameloft — Rittal’s Edge ‘data centre-in-a-box’ provided the games publisher with the processing grunt in a tiny footprint it could situate in an open office area. The turnkey solution was deployed rapidly with few facilities modifications.
- Sydney Airport — By deploying in the baggage-handling area a closed-loop rack system that excluded dust and debris while delivering superior cooling, Australia’s gateway maximised its high-value retail store space in its international terminal.
- Transport & Main Roads Qld — A quiet and secure, self-contained rack with integrated ‘Blue e+’ cooling and power was located in an unused cupboard, which eliminated additional room costs or expensive offsite collocation.
How do we explore if a Rittal micro data centre is the right solution for us?
Combining Rittal’s industry-leading expertise in micro data centre innovation with our extensive partner network, together we can craft a bespoke solution in record time.`
Where are micro data centres deployed?
Businesses have seized on the opportunities that micro data centres offer in many sectors with a spectrum of use cases such as:
We have engineers and partners at the ready to show how you can achieve a data centre, your way. Contact Rittal by email or call us on 1800 350 665.