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Improve computer room cooling and airflow

Data Centre Airflow

This paper discusses the key issues which need to be understood in order to improve computer room and data centre cooling and airflow.

The vast majority of computer rooms are cooled by air conditioning systems that attempt to deliver cold air to hot IT equipment placed in racks.

A few systems use cold water pumped around the rack and there are even some exotic solutions using liquid carbon dioxide and even chip level cooling. The majority however use cold air derived from direct expansion or chilled water-fed air-conditioning units, sometimes augmented by free cooling circuits.

The amount of cooling capacity delivered to an equipment rack depends upon the design of the system and how effectively it has been implemented.

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The benefits of a Data Centre Electromagnetic Survey

data cnetre EMI (Electro-Magnetic Interference) audit

There are two main reasons for conducting a Data Centre Electromagnetic Survey and radio frequency survey of a facility;

1. To meet regulations and recommendations concerning the exposure of people to high levels of non-ionising radiation, better known as electromagnetic fields
2. To ensure the reliable operation of information technology equipment which can be impaired due to electromagnetic interference

In this whitepaper we explore the regulations and recommendations relating to both of these and discuss how data centre operators can ensure they are compliant with them.

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Data Centre ISO27001 Certification is not enough on it’s own

ISO27001 Certification in Data Centres

In this paper we discuss why you should not rely on Data Centre ISO27001 Certification alone to prove the security and resilience of your data centre.

There are a number of excellent ISO standards that should be applied to data centre management. One of them, ISO 27000 series, covers information security management. It poses one simple question about the security and availability of power and supporting utilities. This is a huge question and cannot simply be left to one simple tick-box response. So which other standards should be considered in parallel with ISO 27000?

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Static electricity in data centres – The hidden failure mechanism

Static Electricity in Data Centres

Everybody accepts that static electricity can and does destroy sensitive electronic components and microchips. Exactly what the impact is upon equipment within data centres is difficult to determine as few, if any, statistic seem to be published on the matter.

Equipment does fail however and static is a known failure mechanism and there are at least three known mechanisms for static build-up and discharge within a data centre. This makes the optimisation of the design to minimise this risk an obvious choice.

This paper discusses the problems caused by static electricity in the data centre and what can be done to prevent them.

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The importance of Data Centre Fire Stopping

Data Centre Fire Stopping

“Fire Stopping” means sealing off any penetrations through a fire wall so that smoke and flames cannot spread around a building. This whitepaper discusses why Data Centre Fire Stopping is so important and the recommendations and regulations which define the requirements.

In this paper we explain why it is important to use fire-stopping in a data centre, where it is needed and the different types available.

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Data Centre Health and Safety Management

Data Centre Health and Safety Risk

In this paper we will discuss Data Centre Health and Safety requirements for data centres. Good Health and Safety practices are required at all places of work and are written into the laws of every country. We will quote from the relevant British legislation but the UK requirements are virtually identical to those in any territory you are operating in because they are mostly based on common sense and good practice.

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Beware Zinc Whiskers

Zinc Whiskers

What have the Australian Tax office, NASA, a nuclear plant, and a Patriot missile battery all got in common? Data Centre failures caused by Zinc Whiskers. In this white paper we will explain what they are and what problems they can cause in a data centre and how to avoid them.

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Data Centre Failures and how to avoid them

Data Centre Failures

We, at Capitoline, have developed our own data centre management and operations methods largely based on our work with existing related standards, the Amsterdam Internet Exchange and other data centre audit customers.

We thought a good place to start establishing good practices would be to try and analyse why data centres go wrong and put in place practices which prevent these failures. Information on this has been published before but usually by manufacturers who have a specific interest in justifying a demand for their own products or sometimes by users such as Google who are not in a hurry to give much away about their own shortcomings. As a result information tends to be varied and with no common reporting terminology.

Over a sixty month period, 219 major failures were identified. This paper explains what caused them and how you can avoid the same happening to your facility.

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Data Centre Temperature – Is hotter better?

Data Centre Temperature

Data Centre Temperature – Should it be hotter? There are many stories in the technical press and online about the virtues of running data centres hotter and hotter in order to save electricity and money overall. However this is a game of diminishing returns and at some point running the data centre hotter will be more trouble than its worth.

This paper explains why running your data centre hotter may not be the best thing to do.