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    What do the different Data Center Standards actually mean?

    Data Center Standards
    According to the 2017’s world populations’ Wikipedia chart, the Earth accounts for 750+ crores of humans. Out of which more than half of the population is actively engaged on the internet via businesses, social media, websites, mobile applications, etc.

    “Increase in the audience on the internet is proportionally increasing the data which we share publically or privately.”

    Whichever industry you work in or whatever interests you have, each of us probably came across the word “data” and how it is changing the face of our world?

    Today, data analysis is everything for boosting business revenue, establishing a new vertical, obtaining easy location-based Intel, crime investigation, social media engagement and many more.

    The data generation and storage have extensively risen in the “Data Industry” where Data Centers store, manage and spread data while housing networks, servers, IT operations of internet enterprises, and many more.

    Over the past decade data centers has grown rapidly and now data collection is becoming an important job of the 21st century. Top datacenters like Tulip Data Center, Bangalore, Microsoft Data Center, The Citadel Tahoe Reno, Nevada are at present responsible for collecting data globally.

    However, with the growing data center industry, “the data center standards” are also growing and remarkably helping out in upgrading and establishing the existing and new data centers respectively.

    What Are Data Center Standards?

    Any company or individual looking to get the data center’s services to need a guaranteed level of quality. Since data centers are the hub of every business, it is essential to define metrics of data centers.

    Regardless of the type, size of the data center, the applications, the switching topology, and the underlying cabling infrastructure, all data centers follow the same basic design, principles and industry standards.

    Additionally, a quality data center is also measured on the standards of facilities, security, safety, fire suppression, electricity consumptions, power management, energy efficiency, IT infrastructure, performance, and reliability.

    Every data center belonging from tier 1 to tier 4 has to follow different types of data center standards if they are willing to become a top graded data center in the world.

    Following all the codes and standards is a new direction to establish new or upgrade existing data center. Those data centers who can follow each and every standard or rule are known as green data centers.

    Types Of Data Center Standards

    To ensure the availability and the efficiency of data centers, there exist few primary industry guidelines and standards regulating the constructions and operations of data centers at every tier. A few major data center standards are as follows:

    Uptime Institute - It is an advisory organization which provides guidelines to improve the efficiency, reliability, and performance of any critical data center infrastructure. It’s a global data center industry which established the Tier-based Classification System for defining data center availability.

    Tier 1 grants basic capacity, Tier II presents redundant capacity, Tier III is maintainable with no shutdowns and Tier IV data centers are fault tolerant. A data center’s first goal is to get the tier level.

    ANSI/TIA-942-A Infrastructure Standard for Data Centers - It’s a North American standard which refers to the TIA-568 series outlining the data center’s functional areas, environmental considerations, suggestions for pathways and spaces, cable media distances, and cable management.

    ANSI/BICSI 002-2014 Data Center Design and Implementation Best Practices - It measures a data center’s design and operation guide by covering construction, planning, commissioning, management, protection, and maintenance.

    Also, measures infrastructure of cables, address container, and modular data centers, and determine the reliability and efficiency of data centers.

    CENELEC EN 50173-5 Information Technology - Generic Cabling Systems Part 5: Data Centres - Arranged with TIA-942, it is a European Union Standard that specifies the requirements for cabling within the data centers to support all existing and emerging applications.

    SO/IEC 24764 Information Technology - Generic Cabling Systems for Data Centres - Based on both EN 50173-5 and TIA-942 it’s an international standard which again specifies cabling within the data centers while referring to ISO/IEC 11801.

    ASHRAE 90.4-2016 - This standard also recommends construction, design, operation, and maintenance of the data centers and focuses on the use of both off-site and on-site renewable energy to ensure reliability and efficiency.

    Additionally, it provides thermal guidelines, best cooling practices and temperature ranges for the better performance of the data center.

    The Green Grid - It is a non-profit association of several industries, end-users, technology providers, utility companies, facility architects, and policymakers who work in the direction to improve data center efficiency around the world.

    This association also takes care with the development of PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) that measures energy efficiency in data centers.

    “If there are data center standards, then there are few common data center certifications like LEED, ISO, SAS 70, SSAE 16, SOC 1,2,3 and 4 obtainable to the facility.”

    Design, construction and operational standards for any data center should be chosen on the basis of the definition and mission of the business. If your facility is international, then follow international standards otherwise try following the country-specific standards.

    Therefore, to collect, house and safely store data and information, we need data centers and their metrics or the standards.

    Conclusion
    There are about five to six types of data center standards and certifications that provide guidelines to ensure the availability and efficiency of these centers. These standards measure reliability and performance based on operations, infrastructure, cabling, wiring, power usage, pollution, etc. and divide all centers between tier 1 to green data centers. This article briefly describes the remarkable factors and the types of data centers that exist today.

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