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New Value Together: Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) Transforms Data Centers

Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) vastly changes how data centers are managed. Huawei’s renowned solutions help maximize the total value of ownership in these data facilities with the support of AI. Benefits include flexibility in managing the data center and both energy and cost savings.

Digital transformation has become an essential part of the business agenda of many enterprises. Data centers, which play a major role in the process, are witnessing vast upgrades with increasing importance for the success of these organizations.

However, with rapid growth in both the number and scale of data centers, IT leaders planning and managing the facilities, as well as working to reduce power consumption, face pressing challenges – traditional operation and maintenance (O&M) can no longer solve these issues like before.

Currently, large data centers are operated and maintained manually. While the process requires highly skilled personnel, it is usually not as efficient as needed to meet with fast-changing markets. According to a Huawei survey, about 38% of data centers fail to recruit suitable engineers. The Uptime Institute Global Data Centre Survey 2020 also indicates that 75% of operators admit that they are at fault for most outages – most of these outages could have been prevented with proper O&M. The figures show that efficient O&M and better human resources allocations, though challenging, can help ensure smooth and reliable data center operations.

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New Management Model Required for Modern Data Centers

For a long time, resources for data centers have not been well utilized. According to the statistics of Huawei’s internal data center in 2014, as much as half of the resource was lost for nothing in some individual data centers. At the same time, inventory count takes several weeks in huge data centers, while accuracy can rarely be guaranteed due to the lack of efficient – let alone automated – management systems.

In a typical 15-year life cycle of data center, about 60% of the total cost of ownership (TCO) goes to electricity costs – three times that of capital expenditures (CapEx). Therefore, trimming the electricity bill is also at the top of the priority list.

Business executives, meanwhile, want to convert data centers from cost centers into facilities that drive business value. Apparently, data centers can make significant impact on businesses by enabling them to swiftly respond to market changes and evolving demands.

This is where Data Centre Infrastructure Management, or DCIM, kicks in. A good DCIM can efficiently monitor, measure, and manage data centers, covering both IT equipment and supporting infrastructure, including power and cooling systems. It can lead to maximum energy efficiency and minimize downtime due to equipment problems.

Digital Management With High Visibility

Leveraging its experience of more than two decades in managing data centers of scale, along with ground-breaking technology in artificial intelligence and big data, Huawei has developed DCIM solutions in NetEco 6000. The solution facilitates device visualization by providing a digital monitoring map to quickly search for and view the real-time running parameters of various basic devices and evaluate device health.

The solution also supports full 3D visualization, building a full 3D digital model to help customers quickly identify potential risks. For instance, it identifies hotspots in equipment rooms through a temperature map.

By making links visible, NetEco 6000 intelligently analyses the impact scope of device faults and locates the root cause based on the links of the power distribution and cooling system, greatly reducing troubleshooting time.

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With these capabilities, this DCIM system provides a digital management platform for customers with ultimate user experience and helps customers gain overall insights of data center operation control.

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AI Saves Power for Data Centers

Meanwhile, the iCooling@AI solution can reduce the PUE of data centers by 8 to 15%. With its industry-leading AI technologies, Huawei’s management system is capable of analyzing the energy efficiency of the power supply link, diagnosing the power consumption in real-time, and providing optimal adjustment parameters based on AI analysis to reduce the overall power consumption. Data from a 1480-cabinet data center shows that the PUE is down 0.116, saving about US$615,300 in electricity fees annually with this solution.

Intelligent O&M Frees Employees From Tedious Daily Work

On the other hand, the E2E device maintenance tracing function can automatically generate inspection reports with the 90% automation level to greatly improve the inspection efficiency. O&M experts can customize proactive O&M plans and define device inspection items, periods, and routes in the system. Onsite O&M tasks are automatically delivered to the Operator’s mobile app to take preventive maintenance. In conclusion, the preceding measures can greatly simplify O&M and reduce the O&M labor cost of a single cabinet by 35%.

Better Use of Resources 

With full asset lifecycle management, NetEco 6000 can intelligently plan the capacity of the computer room to better manage data center resources, boosting their utilization by 20%. The Huawei management system is equipped with U-position electronic tags to realize the full life cycle management of assets.

Through the analysis of the space, power, cooling, and network capacity, the best floor plan is recommended to maximize value capacity while avoiding stranding the data center.

NetEco 6000 is widely used in different industries. Among those is at the Dubai International Airport, where a complete set Huawei NetEco system now integrates and manages third-party devices. The digital management platform was built to avoid siloed management brought on by traditional management and reduce management costs.

China Construction Bank (CCB), the second-largest bank in China, is also implementing integrated O&M and centralized service management in its data centers in Beijing and Wuhan.

Pressure has been building in the Wuhan CCB data center, which has a maximum of 6000 racks. The NetEco 6000 solution has automated 90% of inspection work, supported with full tracking of O&M tasks.

Electric car maker BYD (Build Your Dream) has deployed NetEco6000 to greatly simplify data center O&M with a large-screen display interface, 3D monitoring, electronic inspection, and mobile app functions.

The solution is well recognized in its own field, as Huawei NetEco 6000 recently won the Red Dot Award for Brands & Communication in 2020, which is one of the world’s top industrial design awards.

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