Spring Cleaning in the Data Center, address that cable mess

The general rule of thumb is network gear comprises 10% of the power use in the data center, but the network cannot affect your power consumption by throttling IO on servers, and blocking air flow.

We've all seen this photo as cable nightmare with a massive cooling impact to the IT equipment.


As part of the conversation I had with Rackforce's Brian Fry was their strategy to use Cisco Nexus switches with only two cables per server.

Cisco has their own article on the cable problem that is closer to what can occur than the above photo.

Cisco Helping Untangle the Data Center

Cleaning up the cable mess is not a pleasant task, but it does have huge impacts.

Experts estimate that as much as 15 percent of the cost of data center equipment now goes to cabling. Multiple networks with their own sets of cables force data centers to buy extra equipment just to manage all the necessary connections, Borovick says.

More cables also means more energy demands. Cisco estimates companies can trim 20 to 30 percent off their power bill by simply reducing the number of cables and other equipment connecting their servers.

Industry experts also say that more simplicity in cabling is necessary for virtualization, the great hope for modernizing data centers for 21st century communications. "You need to clean up before you can move," Borovick says.

She says the situation has gotten out of control because the data center has evolved as three technological islands of different networks and various servers and data storage systems, each with their own communications technologies.

As it gets close to the first day of Summer, you've postponed the spring cleaning at home.  Cable messes are one of those things that get postponed as well.