Most computer rooms and data centres are built with cooling systems to keep internal temperatures safely below 22 C. However, a sudden spike of Summer heat can put an extraordinary strain on these systems and for every 10C increase in external temperature above the average, the risk of a data centre ‘melt down’ will increase by about 5%. These percentages soon stack up against the unprepared data centre manager and many could find themselves having to take quick action to keep their computer rooms and data centres functioning. However, with some simple planning, steps can be taken today to stop the panic and minimise the impact of a sudden heat spike. Here is Migration Solutions’ check list to help you plan:
Know what you have
- Is your cooling sufficient for the heat produced by your equipment?
- Will it be sufficient for the coming hot weather?
- Do you have more that one cooling unit?
- If one unit fails can the other/remaining units cope with the
Can portable air conditioning units be used?
- How many would you need?
- Can you pre-arrange for the supply of cooling equipment?
- Is your computer room on an outside wall?
- Are there windows available for the pipes to expel the wasted heat?
- Are there sufficient power sockets for the air conditioners?
- How will security be compromised with doors and windows left open?
Are there any non-critical servers that can be turned off?
- Is dev/test equipment actually being used?
- Can the dev/test work be put on hold during extreme outside
- Could blinds or reflective film be fitted to windows to reduce heat
from the Sun?
“Considering the answers to the above questions is a good start in preparing for a sudden heat spike,” says Kevin Ayling, Business Development Director of Migration Solutions. “It may seem a remote prospect at the moment. However, preparation will also provide an opportunity to raise awareness of the potential dangers of an overheated computer room or data centre. All too often, a company’s computer room or data centre has evolved from a couple of PCs in a cupboard into business critical system and it is worth making the business think about the consequences of losing an application on a server for any length of time. After all a well run, functional and efficient computer room or data centre is essential for a business’ success, and for its survival.”