What is Data Center: Definition and Its Functions
Nowadays, most of companies have shifted to digital workplace. This transition has been accelerated because of the pandemic, which requires companies to utilize digital activities at its best. The increase in digital business processes causes the increasing need for a reliable IT infrastructure to sustain the increasing amount of digital data generated by companies every day.
Along with the rise of digital trends within business environment, a data center has been the basic and crucial requirements for each company. Did you know what data center is and its functions for modern companies?
What is data center?
Simply put, data center is a facility that provides a physical location for placing computing systems and other digital components such as data.
The data center provides a network and data storage space that can be used by companies, organizations, or other agencies to organize, process, store and disseminate data on a large scale.
The Functions of Data Center for Companies
During the pandemic period, companies are increasingly becoming aware of the importance of a reliable data center. Because with a reliable data center, business activities such as sending email and file sharing, operating business applications such as CRM, ERP, AI, machine learning, virtual desktops, and other remote communication applications are well-operated at anytime and anywhere.
The Core Components of a Data Center
In general, there are some components of a data center – including firewalls, storage systems, servers, routers, switches, and application delivery controllers. Because these components store and manage business-critical data and applications, data center security will be always the first priority for every data center providers. Those components are providing these following infrastructures:
- Network infrastructure – It is used to connect servers (physical and virtualized), storage, and external connectivity to end-user locations.
- Storage infrastructure – As the name implies, this infrastructure is used to store the company’s digital data. It has a flexible capacity, along with business growth.
- Computing resources – This infrastructure provides the processing, storage, and network connectivity that drive business applications performance.
In addition to those previously mentioned components, a data center location is also equipped with physical facility such as server room, racks, backup generator as the second machines that will automatically turn on when the main power source is off, UPS or Uninterruptible Power Supplies which are useful as a backup power source for generator engines, cooling systems, sturdy construction to protect servers for disaster recovery, and a network operations center for IT teams that monitor data center performance and its security for 24/7.
Types of Data Centers
Data center providers offer many types of data centers and service models for their clients. The classification depends on the capacity, what technologies they use for computing and storage, and energy efficiency. These are some types of data centers:
1. Managed services data center
If a company use this type of data center, it means that their data centers are managed by a third party (a data center provider) on behalf of a company. They lease the equipment and infrastructure from the third party to support their IT operations instead of buying it.
2. Colocation data centers
By using colocation data centers services, it means that a company rents all space within a data center owned by others and located off company premises, including building, cooling, bandwidth, security, and other components such as servers, storage, and firewalls.
In addition to types of data centers, data center is also classified into data center tiers. At present, data center is classified into 4 tiers. For further information about data center tiers, you can click on this article:
That’s all the explanation about what is data center: definition and its functions. To sum up, the data center is a physical facility that companies use to accommodate their business-critical applications and information. For companies that are preparing a business plan to grow, it is very important to consider about how to maintain the long-term business reliability. Therefore, partnering with data center providers could be the right solution to manage IT operations that play key roles in business continuity, while still focusing on strategic planning for future business growth.
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