Article published by : JChitwood8 on Monday, February 04, 2013 - Viewed 875 times

Category : Data Recovery

Purpose-Built vs Retrofit Data Centers

Many businesses utilize the services that data centers provide. However, it is difficult for a business to know which data center will best serve their needs. Many Houston colocation firms are designed to accommodate a wide variety of customer-specific business requirements. Colocation firms must maintain the promises of data security and continuity of ongoing data operations.

The best Houston colocation firms are located in purpose-built facilities. A purpose-built data center is a facility that was originally designed and constructed to house a colocation business. Retrofit data centers are not optimally designed to provide all of the security and efficiency that customers demand. Here are some comparisons between purpose-built and retrofit data centers:

Natural Disaster Resilience
Ideally, a data center should be located in an area with a low incidence of natural disasters. Hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, and tornadoes pose a serious threat to any structure. Purpose-built facilities should be located in areas of relative safety, in order to assure the security of customers’ valuable equipment.

Many data centers, including Houston colocation facilities, are located in areas with natural disaster threats. These data centers should be constructed to withstand disasters.

1.) Wind protection
a. Purpose-built data centers
i. Constructed to withstand 160 mile-per-hour winds.
ii. Cinder block or concrete exterior walls that are 10 inches thick.
iii. Foundation should be secured deep into surrounding bedrock.
iv. The roof should be made of 6.5-inch-thick concrete
1. There should be a minimal number of openings on the roof.
a. Avoid skylights, vents, AC units, etc.
v. Exterior doors should be no taller than 7 feet.
vi. Structural components should be welded together for strength.

b. Retrofit data centers
i. Constructed to withstand 90 mile-per-hour winds.
ii. Exterior walls are commonly 7 inches thick.
iii. A flat concrete foundation is used.
iv. The roof is usually made of metal or other fabricated material, which is only 1 inch thick.
1. Also, there may be an excessive number of skylights, drains, AC units, etc.
v. Exterior doors may not meet wind rating standards of 160 miles-per-hour.

It is clear that purpose-built data centers have structural safety advantages over retrofit data centers.

Utility and Mechanical Protection
A Houston colocation facility should run their electrical and telecom conduits underground to ensure protection. Generators and transformers should be placed indoors to allow for efficient servicing and to keep them protected from adverse weather conditions. These choices are not often available to data center businesses that operate in retrofitted buildings.

Spatial Efficiency
A purpose-built Houston colocation center should be designed to offer customers and service technicians a logical and efficient floor plan. Navigating and using the data center should be convenient and easy. Many retrofitted data centers are not equipped and planned in this way. They may have odd-shaped rooms and offer an inefficient floor plan for data center operations.

Businesses should choose a Houston colocation facility that is purpose-built. A purpose-built facility offers several advantages over a retrofitted facility. Purpose-built facilities have the proper structural components to guarantee building safety. Purpose-built facilities are also designed to protect utility lines and to offer technicians easy access to the facility’s equipment. Finally, a purpose-built Houston colocation center is designed to encourage easy navigability and efficiency for customers and service technicians.


Keywords: Houston colocation, Colocation

By: JChitwood8

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Article ID 1005670 (Views 875)

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