Wingspan

Brocade Builds Its New Data Center from the Ground Up

by Tim.Graumann on ‎01-25-2010 04:09 PM (403 Views)

Brocade’s new San Jose campus gives our IT team the ability to create an infrastructure to support the technology of today and of the future. It’s a big job and a huge opportunity. When it’s done the new campus will provide for scalable platforms to enable the demand we see coming.


The new infrastructure will provide us with the opportunity to upgrade and consolidate several legacy systems, retire others and introduce robust new solutions. Technical requirements call for designing and building an all-new WAN, LAN and Wireless IP network. Extensive cabling and wiring is also needed to support the demands of both our IP telephony system and a heavily utilized SAN.


Our three San Jose-area data centers will be consolidated into one secure, state-of-the-art facility. For business continuity, we’ll use a high-efficiency UPS system with a stand-by generator; a second B Bus rail for all critical network and storage equipment; redundant in-row cooling units; a back-up water reservoir system; and the latest fire suppression technology. We’ve also included provisions for a future Tier upgrade that will enable installation of a second UPS system and redundant chiller.


We’ve designed the new data center to optimize energy efficiency: it will have a hot row, cold row configuration with hot row containment; custom-designed in-row cooling units; fully automated controls at the POD level with energy monitoring capabilities; energy efficient chillers and cooling towers; and high-efficiency motors with variable frequency drives.


We’re working closely with our Facilities and Real Estate teams to migrate technology and equipment to the new site. How and when we move is critical. Brocade employees have zero tolerance for network downtime, so IT’s transition strategy has been planned very carefully to limit disruption within the business.


There will be three phases. Each phase represents the relocation of the data center, building equipment, labs and people from one of Brocade’s three main San Jose and Santa Clara sites. Phase 1 will take place in May, phases 2 and 3 in mid and late July, respectively.


The work is already well underway. To minimize risk and downtime, seed equipment is being installed at the new campus. We’ll migrate critical business applications and services to this equipment in waves, and fully test it before moving it into production.


We’ll also reuse existing technology and hardware in an effort to save costs, but only where it makes sense. For example, once applications have been successfully migrated to the seed equipment at the new campus, we’ll move the freed-up equipment and reuse it. We expect to repurpose about 60 percent of our existing data center and lab equipment this way.


Looking to the future, the demand for storage and networking solutions is only going to increase and increase exponentially. Brocade’s new campus will give us a next-generation facility to easily handle the flow of data and the applications to support that demand. In future blogs, I’ll be writing about each area of the new campus’ IT infrastructure (e.g., the network, the SAN servers). I hope you’ll find the information useful.