Data Center Definitions

This glossary explains the meaning of key words and phrases that information technology (IT) and business professionals use when discussing data centers and related software products. You can find additional definitions by visiting WhatIs.com or using the search box below.

  • U

    uninterruptible power supply (UPS)

    An uninterruptible power supply (UPS) is a device that allows a computer to keep running for at least a short time when the primary power source is lost. It also provides protection from power surges.

  • Unix

    Unix -- often spelled UNIX, especially as an official trademark -- is a multi-user operating system designed for flexibility and adaptability.

  • Uptime data center tier standards

    The Uptime data center tier standards are a standardized methodology used to determine availability in a facility. The tiered system, developed by the Uptime Institute, offers companies a way to measure return on investment (ROI) and performance. (Continued...)

  • Uptime Institute, Inc.

    The Uptime Institute, Inc. is a consortium of companies devoted to maximizing efficiency and uptime in data centers and IT (information technology) organizations... (Continued)

  • utility computing

    Utility computing is a service provisioning model in which a service provider makes computing resources and infrastructure management available to the customer as needed, and charges them for specific usage rather than a flat rate.

  • V

    VSAM (Virtual Storage Access Method )

    VSAM (Virtual Storage Access Method ) is a file management system for IBM's larger operating systems, including its primary mainframe operating system, MVS, now called OS/390. (...Continued)

  • W

    Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulation (WEEE)

    Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulation (WEEE) is a directive in the European Union that designates safe and responsible collection, recycling and recovery procedures for all types of electronic waste. 

  • water cooling

    In computers, water cooling is a method used to lower the temperatures of computer processors, and sometimes other components such as graphics cards, using water rather than air as the cooling medium. (Continued...)

  • wetware

    Wetware refers to programmers, developers, systems administrators, cloud and IT architects and other employees that directly affect how servers, applications, networks and the rest of an IT system functions.

  • white box server

    A white box server is a generic server made from commercially available retail computer parts. The phrase "white box" merely indicates that the equipment is generic or brand-agnostic -- the server can be any color.

  • wireless sensor network (WSN)

    A wireless sensor network is a group of specialized transducers with a communications infrastructure that uses radio to monitor and record physical or environmental conditions.

  • workload

    In computing, the workload is the amount of processing that the computer has been given to do at a given time.

  • WUE (water usage effectiveness)

    WUE (water usage effectiveness) is a metric developed by The Green Grid nonprofit consortium to help data centers measure how much water a facility uses for cooling and other building needs.

  • Y

    Yellowdog Updater, Modified (YUM)

    Yellowdog Update, Modified (YUM) is a program that manages installation, updates and removal for Red Hat package manager (RPM) systems. YUM allows the user to update groups of machines without having to update each RPM separately.

  • Yet another Setup Tool (YaST)

    YaST handles much of the administration load, offers a simple graphical interface and sets up setting system parameters easily.

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