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Top 9 Mistakes in Data Center Planning

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Your data center is at the heart of your organization so there is constant demand and capacity challenges. How do you effectively plan out a data center deployment, upgrade or new build-out? Basically, how can you avoid making major mistakes when entering the “build and expand”world?

In this white paper from Schneider Electric, we learn that the key lies in the methodology you use to design and build your data center facilities. All too often, companies base their plans on watts per square foot, cost to build per square foot, and tier level—criteria that may be misaligned with their overall business goals and risk profile. Poor planning leads to poor use of valuable capital and can increase operational expense.

While there are numerous consultants in the field to help you find your way, assessing ideas and input can be overwhelming. Organizations with critical capacity requirements in the 1-3 megawatt range may fall into this risk category. The critical nature of mid-size users is no less important than mega users; however internal technical expertise to drive proper expansion plans may be limited. The result is information overload from multiple sources, leading to confusion and poor decision making.

So – what are these top mistakes? Let’s take a look:

  • Mistake 1: Failure to take total cost of ownership (TCO) into account
  • Mistake 2: Poor cost-to-build estimating
  • Mistake 3: Improperly setting design criteria & performance characteristics
  • Mistake 4: Selecting a site before design criteria are in place
  • Mistake 5: Space planning before design criteria is in place
  • Mistake 6: Designing into a dead-end
  • Mistake 7: Misunderstanding PUE
  • Mistake 8: Misunderstanding LEED certification
  • Mistake 9: Overcomplicated designs

There will be many data center deployments which hit road-blocks and hurdles. You can avoid quite a few problems by avoiding these mistakes. Download this white paper today to see how through proper planning using the TCO approach – you can create a data center facility that meets your organization’s performance goals and business needs today and tomorrow.

About the Author

Bill Kleyman is a veteran, enthusiastic technologist with experience in data center design, management and deployment. His architecture work includes virtualization and cloud deployments as well as business network design and implementation. Currently, Bill works as the National Director of Strategy and Innovation at MTM Technologies, a Stamford, CT based consulting firm.

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  1. Great advice that should become ingrained into any IT leader's mind as they work through this process. TCO is especially huge whether its a build out, complete redo or a component upgrade. Establishing an end goal upfront can make a significant difference. For instance, in a recent IDG Intel survey, increasing application performance was most commonly cited as a goal of an network infrastructure upgrade. Having similar goals for each component not only provide a means of measuring ROI, but also help guide the planning process.