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Modern data center strategy: Design, hardware and IT's changing role

Newer data centers look far different than they did just a decade ago, and strategies for design and style continue to shift under the weight of big data, cloud computing, mobility and other technology trends.


Data center infrastructure now extends beyond the brick and mortar walls to public clouds, where data that was once considered too sensitive to leave the building is now hosted. Servers have been consolidated and fully virtualized, and new levels of integration achieved with converged infrastructure systems. The data center has to be highly scalable and systems need to be faster every year. IT professionals within the data center have to be jacks of all trades. And of course, the business side demands all of that on a minimal IT budget.

In this guide, we present all the tenets of a modern data center strategy, including the latest in data center infrastructure, operations and management. We also cover the changing role of IT, important IT skills of tomorrow and the tools IT pros need to manage a hybrid environment.

1Explore the future -

Tomorrow's data center

While no one can predict what the future holds, we can plan for emerging technologies in the data center. Here are a few data center strategies to watch.


Software-defined networking marks drastic data center change

Software-defined networking (SDN) promises a virtual network infrastructure that can be provisioned as easily as setting up a new virtual server. But real-world SDNs are hard to find and require significant management and resources. Continue Reading


Five data center upgrade strategies to modernize your facility

Organizations can extend the working life of their aging data center by renovating the facility and making these changes -- some of which cost little to nothing. Continue Reading


Data center strategy for a hybrid environment

Companies now use the public cloud as an extension of their own data center, mixing public and private clouds with colocation and on-premises IT to become as efficient as possible. Continue Reading


Meet tomorrow's computing demands with new technologies

Web-scale IT organizations reap efficiency, agility and performance benefits over typical enterprise operations. It's time to change that. Continue Reading


Start with cloud, SDN and virtualization to modernize your data center

Cloud computing, flash storage, software-defined networks (SDN), virtualization and new data center management tools will help data center managers deliver the data their customers or end users need. Continue Reading


Influences on IT's spending plans

TechTarget's data center survey gauges the influence that cloud, big data, mobile computing, virtualization and more have on data center strategies. Continue Reading

2An evolving workforce -

The changing role of IT

As the technology inside data centers changes, so must the associated IT personnel. Welcome the DevOps movement, and other trends that shape a new role for backend IT.


DevOps movement boosts IT operations teams

In this Q&A, author John Allspaw, senior vice president of technical operations at, compares IT operations pre- and post-DevOps and offers suggestions about simple things that IT operations teams can do to boost their profile. Continue Reading


What's driving the DevOps movement?

The DevOps movement has been motivated by many things, but three things have driven it into the mainstream. Continue Reading


Learn how to work with Chef

Chef speaks the developer's language, which takes some getting used to when you're fluent in IT ops. Continue Reading


How Facebook uses Chef configuration management tools

One of the rock stars of the cloud and DevOps movement shares lessons learned from using Opscode's Chef configuration management tools in its data center design strategy. Continue Reading


Essential DevOps tools besides Chef and Puppet

Here are 10 popular DevOps tools that will meld application development and deployment into a more streamlined exercise. Continue Reading


Six hot new data center jobs

Learn how the growing popularity of technologies such as cloud computing has transformed the data center job market and expanded IT skill requirements. Continue Reading


Sharing IT budget control

The day is coming when individuals who are not in IT will hold sway over large portions of the corporate IT budget. Continue Reading


Prepare a software-defined data center team

Security and automation go hand-in-hand with software-defined data centers -- does your team have the skills to match? Continue Reading

3Cloud and convergence-

The latest in data center infrastructure

Looking at emerging technology is important for the future of data centers, but what about today's data center? These tips on cloud computing, converged infrastructure and the data center show the current trends to follow.


Flashy innovations inside hyper-converged offerings

Converged and hyper-converged infrastructures are getting a boost from all-flash storage components. Continue Reading


The many faces of converged infrastructure

IT vendors are riding the converged infrastructure wave into data centers by labeling their wares with the term, but very few platforms are truly converged. Continue Reading


Cloud computing risks from a data center perspective

IT has three choices with public cloud: steering clear, maintaining its entire environment off-site in the cloud or seeking the best of both worlds with the hybrid cloud model. Continue Reading


Become the cloud service provider your enterprise needs

The traditional data center needs to survive the cloud era -- by embracing it. Continue Reading


Build a better private cloud than AWS

Most private clouds fail on the first deployment. Take these tips to heart when designing a cloud move. Continue Reading

4Crunching numbers-

Big data, data center applications

Big data has established its place in the enterprise. Staying on top of the latest software and hardware changes ensures that your company will make the most of the data deluge.


Academics teach commercial enterprises about big data

Big data analytics was once an area of technology reserved for scientists, but corporations now need the technology to analyze huge volumes of data for a host of business reasons. Continue Reading


Big data = big changes in the data center

Brace yourself for big data. If it hasn't already hit your data center, it will soon and it may place new demands on your IT infrastructure, operations and data center strategy. Continue Reading


Legacy applications in the cloud: What's ahead?

IT industry watchers predict that within about five years, legacy apps that are currently difficult to deploy to the cloud will become better suited to a cloudy home. Continue Reading


How cloud apps impact data center infrastructure and management

Reducing servers results in smaller data center facility concerns and costs, but migrating apps to a SaaS model is not without its own unique hurdles. Continue Reading

5Take the temperature-

Data center cooling

Agility, efficiency and mobility are three aspects of modern data centers, and the facility is a big part of it. Learn how to monitor energy use, remain flexible and save the environment.


Keep data center energy use in check with PUE metrics

Metrics tools that examine energy efficiency provide broad measurements that are helpful for enterprises that want to minimize energy use. Continue Reading


The big green payoff

Sustainable data center operations are imperative for the era of ubiquitous computing. On a practical level, green facilities can also save money. Continue Reading


Q&A: How to keep up with massive Internet growth

Kevin Ressler, director of global product management for the enterprise networks division at TE Connectivity, discusses the rise in employee device mobility and how data centers must evolve to meet user demands. Continue Reading


Renew the data center

For the largest, most power-hungry data centers, renewables like wind and solar are picking up some of the power load. Continue Reading


New technology, trends to cool off the data center

Stagnant strategies for data center cooling will keep energy bills climbing ever higher, but a more modern data center strategy can bring them back down to earth. Continue Reading


An example of upgrading on-premises

When it came time for a new data center, VSE decided -- after much research -- to build rather than outsource, and repurpose its old equipment for DR. Continue Reading

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