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An opportunity may be presenting itself to build out a new data center in a large, existing space in the next 1-2 years. Has anyone built/renovated a data center recently? Any advice? Especially regarding a rough-order-of-magnitude cost? We are going to have to run some fiber to the new location anyway, so I'm mainly looking at specific costs for the data center itself -- electrical, HVAC, UPS, other infrastructure. If you've built out using new "green" technology that would be a plus, too.

Stan Gunn

Associate Vice President
Information Technology
Austin Community College
512.223.1200

********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.

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On 10/7/2011 5:35 PM, Stanley Gunn wrote: > An opportunity may be presenting itself to build out a new data center > in a large, existing space in the next 1-2 years. Has anyone > built/renovated a data center recently? Any advice? Especially > regarding a rough-order-of-magnitude cost? We are going to have to run > some fiber to the new location anyway, so I'm mainly looking at > specific costs for the data center itself -- electrical, HVAC, UPS, > other infrastructure. If you've built out using new "green" technology > that would be a plus, too. The costs for a data center is directly related to how much power you are going to provide. The amount of consumed power drives the electrical costs, the UPS costs, and the HVAC costs. A very typical way of computing this is to look at two things: 1. Decide how much power you will allocate per server rack. This can range from a low of somthing like 4kw up to as much as 20kw. I find that for many applications, 6kw is reasonable. This figure will be too low for blade servers or very high end compute platforms. 2. Do a layout of the proposed space to compute how may server racks you can fit in the space. Multiply the number of cabinets by the average amount of power to get the total power draw for your data center. You will need to decide how much redundancy you need. Typical redundancy might be: 1. to have two UPS systems, each sized to be able to take the entire load of the data center. This will allow you to survive the failure of a UPS. 2. to have redundant HVAC systems or possibly do some kind of N+1 redundancy. Your options for this will depend on how you choose to cool your data center. 3. To provide a generator. Until you know how much power you need and how much redundancy you want to provide, you really can't do any kind of estimate. I've seen data centers cost as little as $250k for a small data center with 8 racks, up to $4M with a data center that had 50 racks. -Dale ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.
You may want to ask companies like Anixter or Graybar. They have experts that can help you. Many times the service is free. At least the first consult is free. God bless, Sam Young CIO Point Loma Nazarene University Sent from my iPad

Take a look at the “Green Data Center” we built at Syracuse.  When we first planned this, it was definitely a leap of faith but now it is reality.  I can fill you in with more details and hook you up with the right people off-line if you send me email directly.

 

http://www.syr.edu/greendatacenter/

 

Paul

 

 

 

We just built one as part of a new campus center. Couple of bits of advice. Plan larger that you think you will need. I did this about 10 year ago at an other school, made the space 4 time the existing one and within 6 years after it was complete, it was absolutely full. The one we just build is 6 times as big.... of course in each case we started with something not much bigger than a closet.... In planning make sure you understand if the AC units and UPS/power conditioners are going to take up floor space...try to get generator backup power. As you know AC is key, don't let it be "value engineered." Do you plan to up grade campus services (bandwidth, network architecture, etc) or redeploy what you have... Cost humm? Much of that got rolled into the over all building plan, so I don't have a good feeling about that...Be happy to talk more about it off line... Good luck.
Rob
 
Dr. Robert Paterson
Vice President, Information Technology, Planning and Research
Molloy College
Rockville Centre, NY
 
Message from jwood@cwc.edu

Excellent advise so far, so I will add only two minor points:

1.        Watch out for weight issues.  We remodeled into an existing space on second floor – the CRAC (Computer Room Air Conditioning) units are very heavy and this created issues with floor loading; and

2.       A significant cost these days installing a generator are the costs of the conductors between the generator and the data center.  Big and cooper = very expensive these days with the cost of copper.  The cost drives the decision on where to locate the generator relative to the building housing the data center which leads to potential “political” issues if the building is in a high traffic area.

 

Finally, an amusing story.  When we went to the Board for approval, one member thought it amusing that our college was spending over $100K on CRAC!

 

John

John F Wood Chief Information Officer

Central Wyoming College

2660 Peck Ave, Riverton, WY  82501 

cio@cwc.edu

 

Stanley-

Have you considered the option of outsourcing instead of building a new data center so someone else can deal with infrastructure development & maintenance, power consumption, climate controls, security, backups, business continuity, disaster recovery, etc.?   

This may not be the right way to meet your needs in this case --- for example, confidentiality concerns may trump all others --- but it could be well worth the time to do a cost-benefit comparison (since prices & services for data center outsourcing seem to be getting more competitive).  

Marty

=================================
Martin Ringle, Chief Technology Officer   
Reed College, Portland, OR 97202          
503-777-7254   email:   ringle@reed.edu                             
=================================

I'm interested in this too.  I looked into building a DR data center offsite, just down the road, but the cost of connectivity was cost prohibitive.  We were just looking at renting 300 sqft and having 3 pair of site-to-site fiber and it was $72K per year not counting the cost of the other infrastructure.
 
We are looking into a formal Co-Lo arrangement but I betting it will be a fair amount more.
 
If we were to outsource our whole data center it would have to cust us > $100K/yr.
 
John Kaftan
Infrastructure Manager
Network Engineer
Utica College

----- Original Message -----
From: Marty Ringle <ringle@REED.EDU>
Date: Sunday, October 9, 2011 11:14 am
Subject: Re: [CIO] Building a new data center
To: CIO@listserv.educause.edu


> Stanley-

> Have you considered the option of outsourcing instead of building a new data center so someone else can deal with infrastructure development & maintenance, power consumption, climate controls, security, backups, business continuity, disaster recovery, etc.?   


> This may not be the right way to meet your needs in this case --- for example, confidentiality concerns may trump all others --- but it could be well worth the time to do a cost-benefit comparison (since prices & services for data center outsourcing seem to be getting more competitive).  


> Marty

> =================================
> Martin Ringle, Chief Technology Officer   
> Reed College, Portland, OR 97202          
> 503-777-7254   email:   ringle@reed.edu                             
> =================================






>

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