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Winter is coming – is your data centre ready?

Posted by Paul Hone | 9 Dec 2013, 18:18 PM

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Winter presents data centre managers with a number of possible weather related challenges that require some planning to ensure uptime. Most of these issues are very minor but even the smallest thing can have a cascade effect. Paul Hone, Redcentric’s Data Centre Manager looks at some of the issues that can be caused by a sudden change in the weather.

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Data centre design and the introduction of ‘unreliability’

Posted by Paul Hone | 13 Nov 2013, 00:00 AM

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As more and more redundancy is added to a data centre complexity increases and you’re adding more points of possible failure. Mike Christian of Yahoo! made a wonderful point when he said, “Something as simple as a border router failure can effectively knock an entire building of compute offline, regardless of how many generators it has”. There’s no doubt a Tier 4 data centre has many level of redundancy, but does that really make any difference when faced with catastrophic failure?

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More Level 3 woes

Posted by Paul Hone | 4 Oct 2013, 12:43 PM

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Amidst a second outage at Level 3′s Goswell Road data centre, Paul Hone – Redcentric’s Data Centre Manager – sheds light on the damaging effect two UPS failures in six months can have on business continuity. As well as discussing the potential reasons for such an incident, Paul offers tips on how to choose a data centre which avoids these pitfalls.

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Data centre drivers – location, location, location?

Posted by Paul Hone | 10 Jul 2013, 14:06 PM

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Data centres are being built all of the time, but what affects their location? Paul Hone uses the expertise he gained project managing our Reading data centre’s construction to unpick the motives behind data centre geography. From power availability to transport links, a number of factors must be considered when building a next-generation data centre.

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PUE – what does it mean for you?

Posted by Paul Hone | 6 Jun 2013, 14:30 PM

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Paul Hone, Data Centre Manager at Redcentric, sheds light on Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) ratings. Discussing how they’re calculated, as well as how they can be improved, Paul also highlights key questions for CIOs to use in order to avoid falling for heavily-manipulated ratings.

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Could you run your data centre on a mobile phone?

Posted by Paul Hone | 22 May 2013, 14:34 PM

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Paul Hone, Data Centre Manager at Redcentric, reflects on the use of legacy technology within data centres, in comparison to our national, yearly-upgraded mobile phone habit. Taking the core technology behind the iPhone 5 as an example, Paul poses the question, ‘could you run your data centre on a mobile phone?’

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What data centres can learn from the airline industry

Posted by Paul Hone | 19 Apr 2013, 15:20 PM

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Redcentric’s Data Centre Manager, Paul Hone, reflects on the airline industry’s key players, and what data centres can learn from their approach. Discussing an ever-increasing need for efficiency and the stripping back of unnecessary add-ons to reduce excessive costs, Paul offers insight into the day-to-day priorities of a Tier 3 data centre.

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Hotmail downtime and the need for judicious failover testing

Posted by Paul Hone | 15 Apr 2013, 15:24 PM

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With the cause of the Hotmail meltdown having now been revealed, Paul Hone – Data Centre Manager at Redcentric, reflects on what we can learn. Despite the temperature rise being pinpointed as the cause for concern, Paul also explains the importance of regular failover testing, on full load, to prevent total outages.

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Bank holiday and business continuity

Posted by Paul Hone | 28 Mar 2013, 15:40 PM

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Paul Hone, Data Centre Manager at Redcentric, discusses the importance of business continuity in the face of an extended bank holiday. Relaying his own experience of on-site disaster, Paul offers all savvy data centres his top tips for ensuring that the bank holiday weekend remains problem-free.

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Level 3 data centre Goswell Road – more interruptions

Posted by Paul Hone | 18 Mar 2013, 15:53 PM

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Last week, Level 3 Data Centre in London suffered yet another power outage, this time due to a failure on the UPS system that took out customer servers which were relying on the power supply. Paul Hone, Data Centre Manager, discusses Redcentric’s move from this facility into its own state-of-the-art Reading data centre, also offering efficiency and power advice to those looking for a data centre with true power resilience.

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IT efficiency – why its more important than ever

Posted by Paul Hone | 12 Mar 2013, 15:57 PM

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A recent study on BIO Intelligence has highlighted what we’ve know for some time: the IT industry needs to improve its efficiency. The report estimates, even with the many improvements available between now and 2020, that the IT sector will still be responsible for 4% of the planet’s greenhouse gas output. Without significant consideration for the way we consume energy, and the waste we subsequently release, the impact of emissions will be significant, and this calls for immediate action.

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Data centre cooling: cold aisle containment explained

Posted by Paul Hone | 28 Feb 2013, 16:14 PM

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To the untrained eye, data centre racks are simply aligned in a logical, orderly fashion. As a Data Centre Manager, I can tell you that the placement of servers is carefully and meticulously planned to allow for maximum efficiency. Cold aisle containment is a layout designed to achieve energy efficiency and reduce cooling costs, through successful management of air flow. Many data centres are now utilising this design as their layout of choice, and I aim to explain why within this blog.

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Highlighting the issue of business continuity

Posted by Paul Hone | 5 Feb 2013, 16:57 PM

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This Sunday saw 71,024 fans flood to the New Orleans Superdrome to watch the biggest US sports event of the year, the Super Bowl. And broadcast live in over 180 countries, it is estimated that 100 million people watched the event in total.

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Big is not always beautiful

Posted by Paul Hone | 22 Oct 2012, 13:11 PM

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Yesterday, Amazon Web Services confirmed that its Elastic Block Storage service went down for a number of hours, which meant that leading websites including Reddit, Pinterest, and payment service Payvment also went down.

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Data centre failures? Dont accept them

Posted by Paul Hone | 11 Jun 2012, 10:15 AM

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Data centre problems seem to be in the news a lot lately. One recent story in The Register described how a power outage at a data centre in Maidenhead knocked out the firewalls and servers for several web hosting firms.

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An antidote to the hot air surrounding data centre hosting

Posted by Paul Hone | 9 Jan 2012, 09:16 AM

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In potentially baffling customers with marketing spiel and hot air during their Cloud or managed hosting services pitch, many hosts are at the same time confusing matters when they talk about their data centre credentials. To camouflage their shortcomings, they may try and impress you with jargon around their SLAs, MTBFs, PDUs and more*.

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Olympics power drain too big a hurdle for Verizon

Posted by Paul Hone | 6 Oct 2011, 14:08 PM

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In June, my colleague Ian Rhodes warned that “The Olympics will be a significant challenge for the UK infrastructure”. But it’s not just bandwidth that’s the problem. Concerns over power shortages during next year’s Olympic Games in London have caused Verizon Business to dismiss the capital as the site for its flagship data centre.

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Amazon fails to learn redundancy lesson

Posted by Paul Hone | 8 Aug 2011, 16:14 PM

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Who says lightning doesn’t strike twice in the same place? Thousands of Amazon customers worldwide have been left to twiddle their thumbs for an estimated 24-48 hours while the company seeks to restore their connections to its Cloud based services in its Ireland data centre.

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New next generation facility. Why now?

Posted by Paul Hone | 26 May 2011, 13:19 PM

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With a real buzz around our new Reading Data Centre plans, I’m receiving calls and questions on a daily basis, both from existing customers and potential clients (as well as the occasional competitor ‘spy’!). The main query is of course, ‘What’s in it for me?’.

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