IT run the servers, facilities run the air-con...

Facilities running the air-con in a data centre has to be one of the classical IT anti-patterns. You’ve got your nice shiny data centre, rows and rows of cabinets full to the brim with IT kit. Problem is, you don’t run the air conditioning, the facilities people do.

So what you say, the facilities people eat air-con units for breakfast. That’s probably true, but what happens when things go wrong? Are you going to be told about the failure in time to do something about it? Is the first thing you know about the air-con failure when you walk into a blazing hot data centre?

By the time your data centre is an oven, things are too late. You are likely to experience a heightened level of system failure for weeks or months afterwards. Don’t take my word for it, take Robert G Brown’s word for it.

What can you do about it?

  • Make sure the facilities people are pro-actively monitoring the air-con units; AND
  • Give the duty mobile number to the facilities people and ask them to ring you when a failure occurs; OR
  • Install your own independent monitoring system.

When you ask the facilities people to pro-actively monitor the air-conditioning they will bleat about the cost. Quite rightly, monitors purchased from the air-con manufacturer often cost an arm and a leg.

Luckily, from your point of view, things are a lot easier. You can source either network based or serial based sensors that are very reasonable. You can even integrate them into your existing network monitoring system.

There is no excuse for not knowing when your air-con fails. 😄 If you need any help choosing a monitor, please get in touch. As always, we’re happy to help.