Rich Miller – Top 10 Data Center Trends of 2011
What were the major trends in the data center industry during 2011? We’ve identified 10 trends that had a significant impact on the sector. Here’s our list:
1. The Cloud = Business for the Data Center Industry
About once a week I still see goofy headlines asserting that cloud computing is bad news for data centers. The reality, which became crystal clear in 2011, is that the growth of cloud computing means big business for the data center industry. Virtual servers don’t magically float in the clouds. They all live in physical servers, inside data centers. Cloud technologies have driven demand for more efficient data center space that can support higher-density computing workloads. That trend manifests itself in many ways – a hardware refresh, or a data center retrofit, or outsourcing to a cloud specialist, or leasing colocation space or wholesale data center suites. Cloud growth at Rackspace means more leasing for DuPont Fabros, international expansion for Salesforce.com means more business for NTT, and Twitter’s need for impoved latency and redundancy means business for QTS. Not to mention that the data center providers who were most aggressive about moving into enterprise cloud, Terremark and Savvis, were both acquired this year. On virtually all fronts, 2011 was the year in which cloud computing moved from discussion to dollars, and the data center industry was a major beneficiary.
2. Modularity Goes Mainstream
Another technology that saw adoption shift gears was the modular data center. The trend was solidified by a steady stream of announcements of new projects and new customers – something that had been conspicuously absent during the first few years of containerized offerings. It wasn’t just the number of modules, either.
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