I’ve been a little out of touch with this blog in the last month or so. Ever since Thanksgiving things have been crazy, especially at work with the busy season.
Over the last year we have made some great efforts to dramatically increase our stability as well as availability by increasing redundancy to remove single points of failure. This was on many levels including the networking layer by introducing an HA firewall pair, and an HA load balancer pair. We also built out our server infrastructure by implementing 3 web servers for the load balancing, as well as clustering our database hardware and our application server hardware. All of this was intended to be able to easily handle the load of the retail busy season, between Thanksgiving and New Year’s weekend. To be able to really know how much we could handle we wanted to load test the infrastructure top to bottom. Continue reading Unintentional load test
Having been in the IT world for over a decade now I have learned many things. Technology changes, needs change, requirements change, but one of the constants has been that IT is a resource hog on just about every level. You need lots of people, lots of time, lots of money, and lots of energy to keep even a modest IT Infrastructure running.
With the current rush for energy efficiency a lot of focus has been placed on data centers and the energy they consume, and a major push has started to make the Data Center consume less. I’ve been hearing “Green Data Center” lately. I was very interested when we got an invitation to tour a local hosting provider’s new facility that they were building.
We first got the tour of their existing facility and the efforts they have made there, and we then got a tour of the new building and all the advancements that they had built in to increase efficiency.
The existing facility was built many years ago as a small server room that was initially intended to be in house gear. As time went on customers asked to house their server there and the data center was born. It did not have raised floor, and as such all the HVAC was exposed with all the hot and cold air co-mingled. Over the last year they took on a “Hot Aisle Isolation” project which they say has increased the efficiency of the HVAC. This project consists of adding Plexiglas walls between the racks that separate the aisles into zones. In this way you can flood the front side of all your racks with just cold air, and have just the hot air at the rear of the racks. This allows you to have the HVAC return only handling hot air which makes the system a whole lot more effective and increases efficiency. Continue reading Green Data Center
Here is an interesting article I found this morning on Slashdot….
Nuclear bunker houses world’s toughest server farm.