Data Center Noise Pollution

Are data centers getting noisier as high-density installations proliferate?

ComputerWorld had an interesting story last week that takes a deeper look at noise in the data center, particularly the "whoosh" created by cooling systems as they push air through the facility. Noise has become a fact of life in most data centers, and as a result is taken for granted by many data center managers. An excerpt:

Data center workers live with this noise. It's part of the job, part of the culture. But there may be reason to start giving the noise issue more attention: data center consolidations and the adoption of high-density equipment - both big industry trends - are bringing more equipment and denser and hotter systems into data centers.

Some providers are taking steps to protect workers' hearing. Dallas dedicated hosting company C I Host Inc. is providing data center workers with Bose noise-canceling headphones. "The noise - the pressure on their head, if you will - is very distracting and causes serious issues with [workers] being able to concentrate and do their jobs," said Christopher Faulkner, CEO at C I Host.