The Uptime Institute has warned that disruptive and often high-profile outages will continue as operators grapple with the complexities of deploying distributed, hybrid systems across multiple data centres and services.
A report by the Uptime Institute says that the IT industry is in the middle of a large and difficult transition – from single, secure, and tightly managed data centres, to a network of distributed, dynamically interconnected systems deploying clouds, micro services, and software-defined networks (SDN). The new architecture is emerging over time, being constructed partly with new data centres, networks and systems, and partly by building on top of existing infrastructure. The result is a complicated distributed grid that supports an array of applications and services.
Evidence suggests that the best – but not necessarily the cheapest – way to ensure resiliency is to combine site and network level redundancy with distributed IT and resilient architectures using cloud technologies. The Uptime Institute warns that, as the industry moves in this direction in 2019, some painful and sometimes high-profile lessons will be learned.
This analysis forms part of a wider report which identifies ten areas that data centre owners and operators should pay close attention to in 2019 due to their potential to transform traditional data centre designs and operational processes:
- Big Cloud builds push the ecosystem to its limits
The accelerating demands of the big cloud operators for more data centre capacity are distorting and straining the ecosystem of suppliers, builders, operators, and power companies.
- Worried governments step up oversight and regulation
Governments around the world are becoming more concerned about the profits and power of large IT companies – and about societies’ dependency on invisible infrastructure.
- The transition to distributed resiliency will not be smooth
Disruptive and often high-profile outages will continue as operators grapple with the complexities of deploying distributed, hybrid systems across multiple data centres and services.
- Edge data center hype outruns deployment
The demand for small, edge data centres is coming more slowly than predicted. Issues with security, costs, business models, integration, networking, and 5G rollout will constrain adoption.
- Connectivity is king: Operators work to build the network fabric
Demand for fast and secure network connections to both trading partners and cloud operators continues to grow as the network becomes the critical component of the hybrid infrastructure.
- Skills shortage will force new workforce strategies
Even with automation and AI, the data centre sector’s staff shortages are set to intensify. To keep pace with demand today and to avoid a precipitous shortfall tomorrow, data centre operators will work to diversify the talent pool with new initiatives, hiring strategies, and workforce training.
- Climate change forces fresh review of resiliency planning
The risks associated with climate change may be more urgent, varied, and extensive than IT planning had previously anticipated. Data centre resilience assessment is more critical today than ever.
- Economics will drive acceptance of data centre AI…eventually
AI-based approaches to analysing data centre risk and efficiencies, including via new cloud services, will be proven at scale, driving mainstream acceptance and, over time, high levels of adoption.
- Growing threats will necessitate new ‘zero-trust’ approaches
Security vulnerabilities now affects mission-critical facilities. Organisations will need to adopt more stringent policies regarding data centre equipment, services, contractors, suppliers, and staff.
- Programmable power unlocks new efficiencies and agility
A combination of Lithium-Ion batteries and other new forms of energy storage gives data centre operators a new set of levers to help improve data centre performance.