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Base-8 cabling is the key to a future-ready colocation data centre

14 Sep 2017

Article by Greg Whiffin, Corning director of commercial operations for enterprise networks.

Due to the large costs of building and maintaining a data centre to deploy mission-critical services, data centres have traditionally been the domain of big business only.

However, with the explosion of the Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud computing, enterprises both big and small are looking to take advantage of the benefits of data centres but at a much smaller cost.

This is where colocation data centres can prove instrumental. These data centres are third-party facilities which have infrastructure, space, bandwidth and equipment available for rent. They are designed to sustain multiple customers, from large agencies and enterprises to small businesses.

As customer needs can differ significantly, colocation facilities need to have scalable and flexible infrastructure installed in order to provide their clients and end-users with a seamless experience, and effective capacity as and when they need it.

Let’s look at how selecting future-ready cabling infrastructure enables colocation data centres to provide their customers today with an easy-to-deploy solution that will flex and provide a simple migration path, as business conditions change and grow, to 40, 100 and 400G. All while managing capacity and reducing total cost of ownership (TCO).

100% uptime

As colocation data centre providers have stringent service level agreements (SLAs) with multiple customers using the facility, it is critical that its infrastructure is able to maintain 100 percent uptime.

Located near in Western Australia,  Pier DC is a colocation provider which understands this imperative as it is the only Tier-III certified facility. The accreditation requires redundant components and multiple distribution paths to allow for zero shut downs for maintenance, repair, or replacement of equipment.

To support their Tier-III certification, Pier DC deployed a robust, all-optical cabling infrastructure solution which enabled 100 percent uptime. The high-density pre-terminated optical solution supports integrated control systems as well as the passive optical cabling for customer cross-connects.

This enables Pier DC to provide their customers with the assurance that they will have access to their entrusted data and services at all times, regardless of demand spikes, capacity requirements and moves, adds and changes (MACs) that occur during the lifetime of any data centre.

Seamless scalability with Base-8 technology

Meeting the demands of multiple customers is a challenge for colocation data centres. The facility’s infrastructure needs to be able to scale easily to meet changing business, application and customer requirements, for both now and in the future.

Further, as the facility gains customers, it is vital that the cabling infrastructure is able to easily scale to support growing capacity requirements.

Pier DC installed an all-optical Base-8 solution in their two point-of-presence (POP) rooms, enabling the fibre optic connectivity to scale thousands of ports, and also allows for on-site polarity change, which supports future expansion, today.

The fibre solution has enabled Pier DC to strengthen technology adoption due to the 100 percent fibre utilisation, without the need for conversion modules. This flexibility in the POP rooms means that Pier DC is able to support both their customers and their own future growth as required.  

Future-ready, now

In the near and long-term future, key data centre component makers are moving their design focus to Base-2 or Base-8 connectivity. This means that, for Ethernet transmission from 40G to 400G, the industry is shifting to two-fibre and eight-fibre connectivity solutions.

Greater speed of deployment

Colocation operators are tasked to ensure that their customers are able to begin using their rented racks, cabinets and specific cages as soon as possible, with the right infrastructure and capacity to deliver rapid and seamless transmission of data, voice and video to their customers’ end users. Any delays impact mission-critical business and services.

For colocation operators, a flexible future-ready cabling infrastructure ensures the ability to rapidly migrate to 40, 100 and 400G as customer demands and application needs grow. Reducing the facility’s TCO is a key factor in providing the benefits of data centres at a much smaller cost to customers.

It’s clear that the right cabling infrastructure is key to enabling local data centre providers to provide customers with a seamless experience. Now is the time for data centre providers to ensure they have a flexible platform to meet all their customers’ technology requirements today and in the future.

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