Every large or small to medium business have a data centre of some sort, as a backup for unpredictable and spontaneous situations that could lead to a massive loss of important company data. Maintaining these centres are a different issue altogether, as these are the backbone of the company making it the most important building. Without data centre solutions in place, the running of the centre could lead to many problems which have a negative impact on the business.
There are simple and environmentally friendly steps to maintain a data centre, without having to spend a lot of money. These measures should always be practised on a regular basis every day, because then this will ensure that problems remain infrequent. The steps involved do not always require a lot of skills and can be even be done by a lay person.
The first most simple and important rule for all data centre solutions is to keep the centre clean. Never leave any trash or cardboard boxes lying around as keeping the area clean will make it look professional and keep the servers protected. Rubbish and stray boxes generally carry a lot of dirt that can circulate around the area and become drawn into the servers and networking devices. Furthermore having extra bits of paper you do not need is risk as they are flammable. Old equipment and machinery are not needed in the centre; therefore clear up more space by getting rid of junk.
It is also imperative that selected individuals are chosen to have responsibility of the keys for each room, as it is not necessary for every member of staff to have access to every room. More importantly only allow those needed to maintain the server rooms access to the rooms, because too many people in one area increases the risk of errors and faults. A lot of problems that occur in data centres are due to human error; therefore it is a good idea to limit access to certain rooms.
The next step is to make everything the server rooms are clearly labelled and categorised. This means having everything organised and separated. This makes it easier to resolve technical problems and also gives people an instructed method of dealing with the problem. For example, keep each power cable in the server cabinet marked along with the electrical circuit that it is connected to. You can also record where each cable is connected to, as this will save someone time from tracing where the cables are attached.
Another useful bit of data centre solution is putting up signs around the centres marking out and clearly describing what staff should in the event of a an emergency. Often there may be someone at hand to deal with emergency situations; however they may not be at reach. Therefore clear instructions should be given to those who do not hold the specified technical knowledge.
Another golden rule is the food and beverage policy. Are staffs allowed to eat food in and around the server rooms? Can they use their mobile phones in the building? Can they borrow equipment? When can mechanics come in to do maintenance work? These are rules that should be instigated making clear what exactly people can and cannot do. This will also add further security and protection of the building. This will also reduce common human errors and establish a sense of control of the centre.
The final step to following efficient data centre solutions is to make sure that there are sufficient tools and the correct facilities to carry out maintenance or mechanical work. Ideally the person in charge of maintenance should already have access, but it is good practise to have extra tools and resources on site. This also goes for stocking up on useful equipment for staff in general, such as telephones, instruction manuals and other administrative tools.
Anna Stenning is an expert on data centre solutions, having researched the best possible approaches to maintaining a centre.