Embracing a New Enterprise – Is the Traditional Data Center Dead?

Jack Pouchet • February 06, 2018

Specifically, what does this migration mean for the enterprise? Has the traditional workhorse data center outlived its usefulness? Is this the end?

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As our experts at Vertiv looked ahead toward upcoming data center trends, we moved quickly past the migration  to network edge and hyperscale facilities because that requires no foresight – it’s happening already. Instead, we asked ourselves what today’s trends mean for tomorrow’s data center ecosystem. And that question sparked some interesting discussion.

In-house, modular data centers and outsourced critical applications

The answer, our experts agree, is not a simple yes or no. The enterprise as we know it will change, evolve and become better in many ways, but extinction is not on the horizon. For one thing, most businesses still see the value in and need for owned IT assets. They aren’t ready to outsource all of their critical data and applications to third-party computing providers or fully trust their less secure edge facilities. They still want control.

Of course, successful businesses are nothing if not pragmatic, and maintaining a full, old school enterprise data center for limited activities is anything but. It’s inefficient and expensive, and there are better options.

Tomorrow’s enterprise data centers will be significantly different, consolidating multiple facilities whenever possible into smaller, more secure, more intelligent core facilities capable of integrating seamlessly with cloud and colo providers and a more robust edge.

How will these changes reflect on the performance of traditional data centers? 

These kinds of fundamental changes present opportunities to leverage more advanced design techniques and technologies to ensure more efficient operation and better control of remote assets. These leaner, meaner network hubs should deliver marked improvement over traditional data centers built 10 or even 20 years earlier. Imagine a prefabricated core facility, deployed quickly, enjoying all the efficiency benefits of today’s equipment without compromising availability – all while working smoothly with network edge sites and third-party resources.

You won’t have to imagine for long. This is the next step in enterprise data center evolution, and it’s already starting to happen.

Finally, it is clear that enterprise data centers will evolve towards more efficient, agile and high-performance operations. This will combine the advantages of an efficient core facility with the much-needed strong network edge, for the increasing amount of data that is to be processed. But in the end, choosing between internal managed IT assets or externalized computing capabilities is dependent upon a variety of business and market specific factors. 

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