With the cost of data center operations continuing to rise, it’s more important than ever to find ways to reduce costs. One area where savings can be found is in the area of fiber optic network operations. By taking a few simple steps, data center managers can significantly reduce the money spent on running their fiber networks. Read on and learn how to start saving today!
1. Review your data center’s fiber network design and make sure it is optimized for your needs
Regularly reviewing your data center’s fiber network design is critical to ensure that it can effectively support your current and future needs. Before making any changes, you must assess white space availability, network speeds, and density required on day one, along with any potential future requirements you might have. Understanding these elements allows for a more optimized network tailored specifically for your organization, so you can scale or adapt as your business requires. Using high-density modular fiber housings in such scenarios means you can add capacity to expand your network without network disruption or risk of downtime and change cassettes if needed to support technology upgrades.
2. Educate your staff on proper data center fiber network maintenance procedures
Training staff on proper operations and maintenance procedures related to the data center fiber network is necessary to understand how to achieve reliable performance and maximum network uptime. Human error is often a leading cause behind network failures, so training should include safety protocols, best practices for installation and maintenance, and troubleshooting technical issues. An educated team with clearly defined procedures will help ensure consistent, reliable uptime in the data center.
3. Keep your data center clean and free of dust
Keeping your data center clean and dust-free is essential for ensuring network uptime. Dust and lint can severely impact the performance of active equipment or fiber connector end-faces, whereby a 1-micron particle may cause a high-speed fiber link to stop working. To get the best network performance and avoid failure due to fine particles – inspect and then clean (if required) every fiber connector before installation. This also goes for unplugged connectors that are about to be re-connected. Never connect an unchecked connector, as this may cause dirt to become embedded in the glass, and cleaning may not be possible. Always inspect, clean if needed, check again, then connect. Doing this will ensure that you avoid costly damage to active equipment, and unnecessary fiber maintenance or repairs.
4. Cable considerations to support energy-efficient cooling
Implementing an energy-efficient cooling system for your data center can significantly cut down on costs and allow for overall improved performance. Cable management plays a significant role in creating an efficient cooling system, as cable bundles that are untangled and nested correctly can dramatically improve airflow. Additionally, switching to cable types with smaller diameters can help reduce the energy needed for cooling. Making minor tweaks to your cable management approach and cable types will ensure cost savings and more reliable data center performance.
5. Make sure your fiber network is properly labeled and organized
Keeping housings, cassettes, and cables labeled and organized is essential to keep operations efficient. It builds a foundation for your IT infrastructure that will make unplanned maintenance jobs easier by locating housings quickly and allowing technicians to immediately understand what type of cables exist in each housing without needing to trace them from start to finish. Careful organization through labeling also helps with scalability – an investment now could potentially save time and money as your infrastructure expands.
A well-designed and maintained network is essential for a reliable, high-performing, adaptable data center fiber network. By reviewing your design, educating your staff, keeping your data center clean, and ensuring your cables are properly labeled and organized, you can ensure that your data center runs smoothly and efficiently. If you need assistance designing, upgrading, or expanding your data center fiber network, speak to the experts at AFL Hyperscale. We are white space fiber connectivity experts who can help you achieve optimal performance for your evolving data center.
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Written by Gary Mitchell
February 14, 2023