Pimp my data center: American Power Conversion

APC laid the foundation and led the way with InfraStruXure racks, cooling, power management, environmental monitoring, and the software that ties it all together

Change Manager combines a graphical view of the datacenter with an asset manager that keeps track of everything installed in the datacenter -- and not just APC equipment. That data is then compared with readings taken from Capacity Manager, which keeps track of current space, power, and cooling stats based on data provided by APC UPSes, cooling systems, and NetBotz sensors. Due to the "live" nature of this system, we could turn off certain devices to see the impact on the overall datacenter.

The Change Manager and Capacity Manager combo was a bit overkill for our small HIG 319 server room, but for larger datacenters, the information provided can be hugely beneficial toward understanding day-to-day usage costs, long-term capacity planning, how green the datacenter really is, and numerous other concerns. Most important to SOEST is keeping the computing clusters cool. To this end, Change Manager and Capacity Manager can correlate all the information from the PDU's (current draw), plus heat and airflow readings from the NetBotz, and air output from the InRow cooling units to predict hotspots.

The total value of the APC contribution to the HIG 319 project totals nearly US$300,000 when you add up the racks, environmental management, security, power control systems, safety gear, and the software for managing it all.

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