COVID-19 is stress-testing applications and global data centers

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COVID-19 is stress-testing applications and global data centers

Putting to test the underutilized facilities, overutilized resources, and unmanned infrastructure…

It has been a long time I haven’t had the chance to write a blog, now writing this in a time that the global pandemic, COVID-19, is testing humanity’s patience, as well as our applications and data center capabilities globally and more radically than we are used to…

“Numerous applications out there may have never been tested to such degree of an unexpected surge in application peak time and prolonged use.”

Numerous applications out there may have never been tested to such degree of an unexpected surge in application peak time and prolonged use. In parallel to this surge, a steep rise in cybersecurity threats and application vulnerabilities can naturally be expected. Are we prepared for what has already arrived at our door-steps? What are we doing to prepare for the post-corona-era?

“Global data centers are being tested to their limits of efficiency and capacity while maintaining their availability and resilience.”

Applications run via the data centers that support their purpose. Global data centers are being tested to their limits of efficiency and capacity while maintaining their availability and resilience. This is true whether we operate data centers for industries that are experiencing unusually slow demand, such as hospitality and tourism, or we are operating data centers for industries that are maximizing their utilization of resources to respond to the ever-increasing demand.

“Extremely underutilized facilities will be burning resources more than ever before and in certain cases might even cause service interruptions.”

If we operate data centers for the organizations that are experiencing a severe decline in application use, our data centers can become extremely underutilized. However, data center facilities such as chillers and generators deliver optimum efficiency at their recommended optimum utilization. Therefore, if not designed properly, when the revenue streams are limited and cost-savings are most needed, underutilized facilities will be burning resources more than ever before. In certain cases, they might even cause service interruptions. Thus, the efficiency of our data centers, in certain industries, is being stress-tested as we speak. At the same time, if we operate data centers for the surging applications such as social media platforms, video-on-demand, and healthcare, the utilization of our data centers is either reaching its max or exceeding it. In such cases, our data centers are being stress-tested at active loads that are probably beyond the original design specifications for the duration of an average peak expectancy. Therefore, whether our data centers are experiencing the stress of underutilization or overutilization, they are being stress-tested in a way or another.

“Are we then ready to run our data center facilities completely remote, or in absolute isolation? Can our data centers run unmanned for prolonged periods?”

In the midst of this harsh and sudden ongoing test, human resource management becomes another convoluted challenge. During a widespread disease such as the coronavirus, the notions of quarantine and self-isolation are being advocated more and more. What if we reach a state whereby the essential on-site data center operation staff are no longer suggested to work remote, rather instructed by the authorities to stay put and avoid any further commute? Are we then ready to run our data center facilities completely remote, or in absolute isolation? Can our data centers run unmanned for prolonged periods? Regardless of the answer, we should step back and contemplate a little. It is important that we are constructive with our every move and emerge successfully in the face of every challenge or crisis. So let’s convert this COVID-19 challenge into an opportunity to transpire from the pandemic with more robust capabilities and with higher awareness of our true efficacies. We can accomplish that by reviewing and assessing our true capabilities and delivery claims, document our lessons learned, and take the necessary precautions, while we still can…

“Let’s convert this COVID-19 challenge into an opportunity to transpire from the pandemic with more robust capabilities and with higher awareness of our true efficacies.”

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