Firstly, relocating a data centre is no small task. Unlike your standard corporate move, which would involve breaking down, transporting and reassembling equipment, Data Centres must focus on other factors such as ensuring the customer data is available and accessible whilst the transition is taking place. If your business has never gone through such a big move before, we highly recommend the help of a firm that specialises in this service to avoid downtime for your clients and problems for your business!
Well there are two basic models for moving a Data Centre; Physical (Push & Pull) and Virtual/application migration. Commonly found in small Data Centres, Push & Pull relocation's are the riskier and less expensive option of the two. Less sophisticated than carrying out an migration, Push & Pull to put it simply is the disconnection of Data Centre components, ships them to the new location and reassembles them. The biggest problematic factor of this is that the Data Centre cannot be in use whilst being moved and there tends to be a large degree of unpredictability once the components are dissembled and reassembled – both of which can be major issues for clients and customers that depend on the service.
At INFINITI we recommend the Data Centre staff creates a detailed inventory of the components in each rack, so they can be efficiently and successfully reinstalled in the same slots at the new chosen location. It’s critical to set up network connectivity also before you move and ensure the correct power assignments are mapped. Once the move is completed its of high importance to note the power utilisation once online – Power should be balanced throughout the infrastructure from the UPS to the rack level.
During the physical move, you need to consider the several following factors. If installed racks are being moved, it’s important to establish the rack’s static and dynamic load ratings. Dynamic load ratings are mostly always lighter, and a rack structure is always prone to failure if overloaded (the casters are usually the weakest part). We recommend racks to be packed in shock pallets, then loaded onto the moving trucks. The smallest bumps and knocks can have a profound impact on the equipment that never been moved before. Tip guards are often overlooked and should be used also to lower the risk of damage.
The second basic model is a Data Centre Migration – this usually takes much longer and is more meticulous than a Push & Pull move. With Data Centre Migration there are no easy steps and short cuts. Unlike its opposite, a duplicate data centre is created to maintain up time during the migration. The computer environment of the production data centre is duplicated and is tested at least three times for network connectivity and applications before the move can even start to take place. Once all results are up to the recommended standard, the hardware environment, networking environment and computer environment will be turned static until the move is complete.
Updating all records and applications can be carried out after the move – it’s important to avoid updating various factors such as firmware at this point to prevent conflicts from occurring. Duplicating the Data Centre to ensure continuous up time and testing in detail the environments are the major reasons to why a Migration is more time consuming and expensive than a Push & Pull move. However, they go far to ensure that the move will be complete with a minimum chance of problems for the data centre occupants. Once the move is completed, the equipment in the original Data Centre must be tended to. As a legal matter of privacy – All old disks should be wiped, and storage arrays are cleared of applications to maintain security for you as a business and your customer. The more intricate equipment such as networking equipment, processors and structured cabling can be either resold or refurbished.
What We Recommend
Whether you decided to go either Push & Pull or Migration – these following tips are always applicable to your Data Centre Relocation.
- Plan in detail – The first step to any successful relocation is to make sure a delivery path is clear from the beginning to the installation.
- Employ an overseeing manager – To ensure a smooth relocation, a figure head needs to ultimately being charge to make the difficult decisions, answer questions from anyone involved in the project and document any needed details throughout the process.
- Try limit changes on the moving day – The goal is to avoid complications, it’s more important to take the time to plan all details ahead of time to avoid making last minute decisions with unknown implications once the move is under way.
- Track – You never want to be waiting around on equipment or wondering where it is. The use of RFID for server racks and GPS on moving trucks will help maintain order.
- Using Conditioned Trucks – Almost every Data Centre component benefits from being cool – using air-conditioned trucks help minimise malfunction in the future.
- Physical Security – Be aware always. Conducting background investigations of all people involved in the project and consider safe route mapping for both your information and hardware is of importance.
- Experienced Movers – Firms that specialise in the moving of IT equipment may be a little more than your average man with a van – but they are a great save compared to replacing components. If large or heavy equipment is part of the move, you can also hire professional firms with riggers who specialise in moving delicate technology.
We understand how precious your servers are and that a data centre migration can be a worrying time for your company, but you can rely on us to get your servers there safe and sound. Our experienced data centre migration specialists are ready and waiting 24/7 to help you with any sized move, from a single device to an entire data centre.
We have migrated hundreds of servers for businesses across the UK and internationally, including for some of the UK's largest technology companies, and we ensure your servers will receive the same 5 star treatment.
If you're relocating your data centre, our fast quote form will give you accurate budget pricing for our data centre migration services!