John Halamka, the Chief Information Officer and Dean of Technology at Harvard Medical School, has published a tool to help data center operators predict when they will outgrow their existing facilities. The Flash app can track rack space usage, energy costs and power usage and is similar in some respects to a data center modeling tool published by search engine startup Powerset last year.
"One of the great challenges of being a CIO is that I am asked to anticipate demand and deploy the infrastructure and applications needed by stakeholders, while tightly controlling costs," Halamka writes. "Even in a world of virtualization and on demand computing, many IT products and services have a significant lead time to deploy. Creating a new data center, adding significant new power feeds and expanding cooling capacity are examples. To help understand the relationship of real estate, power, cooling, storage, network bandwidth and costs, we've created a web-based model which we're now sharing with the IT community."
You can check out Halamka's Data Center Dashboard app on the Harvard web site.