IT & Infrastructure News | March ‘12

From new data centres to new technology, an assortment of stories that have caught our eye over recent weeks from the world of IT and infrastructure…

Data centre expansion untroubled by economic uncertainty

Independent research has reported an upturn in the number of organisations planning to add new datacentre space over the next 12 months.

The research, carried out by Campos on behalf of Digital Realty Trust, involved more than 200 senior decision-makers at European businesses with annual revenues of at least £500m.

Eighty-five percent intend to expand their resources in the next year, compared to 82 percent at the end of 2010. In addition, the responses indicate a growing need for new facilities, with respondents now requiring an extra 15,600 square feet of space on average compared to 14,500 square feet in 2011. Just over half of organisations surveyed (51 percent) intend to spread this across at least two new sites.

Demand for new data centres is highest among UK and Spanish businesses (35% and 32%), with the French and Dutch companies displaying the lowest interest in expansion (14% and 12%).


 Cisco updates switching portfolio

Cisco Systems (CSCO) has announced an upgrade to its switching range with 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GE) and 40 GE capabilities, the next speed limits for networking.

These new capabilities, announced at Cisco Live 2012 London, are designed to  provide a holistic architectural approach across campus, data center and service provider environments.

A 40 GE option is available for the Catalyst 6500 switching line and both 40 GE and 100 GE capabilities are available for the Nexus 7000 portfolio.  Two new M2-Series modules for the Nexus 7000 are available: a 2-port, 100GbE Module delivers up to 32 100GE ports and the M2-Series 6-port 40GbE Module provides 96 non-blocking 40 GE ports.


EC announces datacentre efficiency programme

The European Commission has announced a project designed to tackle energy efficiency in data centres, and is set to release a set of open source hardware designs for a high-density server.

The CoolEmAll project, which has enlisted the support of universities and vendors, will also deliver monitoring software as part of a wider goal to reduce data centre energy consumption.

Two main tools developed by the project will help to evaluate datacentre and High Performance Computing (HPC) energy efficiency by looking at the interaction of hardware, data centre facilities such as heating and cooling and the role of applications in energy and carbon efficiency.


Solar powered Apple

Apple has announced that its huge new data centre in Maiden, North Carolina, will feature a 100-acre solar panel field and a biofuel burner.

Apple says the features will provide a “high percentage” of the data centre’s energy needs, while Greenpeace estimate suggest that energy from the solar field and bio-gas combined could provide as little as 9% of the energy required by the data centre (assuming they’re correct in estimating that the centre will need 100 megawatts to run at full capacity).