NEW YORK -- Emerson has introduced what it claims is the industry's first comprehensive data center infrastructure management (DCIM) solution, enabling customers to manage both computing technologies and critical infrastructure equipment such as cooling and power via a single platform. The system, from Emerson Network Power, is known as the Trellis platform; it comprises a portfolio of hardware, software, and services designed to manage the dynamic nature and requirements of both computing and infrastructure technologies within a data center.
According to Emerson, with the Trellis platform, data center managers can make smarter decisions on the interplay between efficiency, availability, and capacity utilization. Before the Trellis platform, claims the company, customers were required to purchase and use separate solutions to manage a data center's IT equipment and its facilities infrastructure.
Emerson Network Power launched the Trellis platform today during a news conference that was webcast live from the Interop IT Conference and Expo in New York.
"Virtualization has brought greater flexibility and efficiency to data center management but also has introduced new complexities and pressures to the physical infrastructure," said Steve Hassell, president of the Avocent business of Emerson Network Power. "Organizations today lack visibility into the impact of virtualization and the use of high-density servers, and that keeps them from utilizing the full capacity of their equipment. With the Trellis platform, we intend to provide that visibility along with the tools to manage and optimize changes to the physical infrastructure."
Emerson says the Trellis platform will increase capacity utilization by providing visibility into and control of integration and collaboration between the physical and IT infrastructure layers. This is called dynamic infrastructure optimization and eliminates the need for guesswork that necessitates a power system capacity "buffer."
The Trellis platform brings together the functionalities of Emerson's Aperture, Avocent, and Liebert DCIM solutions and enhances them by creating one seamless solution. The December 2009 acquisition of Avocent provided a strategic capability that is enabling Emerson to provide holistic insight and control across every aspect of the data center.
The demand for this type of solution has been noted by several industry thought-leaders, including industry analyst firm Gartner. "By 2014, DCIM tools and processes will become mainstream in data centers, growing from 1 percent penetration (in 2010) to 60 percent. To take advantage of the benefits as they evolve, I&O (infrastructure and operations) leaders should begin the DCIM evaluation process in 2010 and 2011," said David Cappuccio, managing vice president and chief of research for the infrastructure teams with Gartner in his March 2010 report, "DCIM: Going Beyond IT."
According to Emerson's calculations, if every U.S. data center could utilize 10 percent more of their available power capacity, U.S. businesses stand to save more than $10 billion through improved data center infrastructure management. The incomplete visibility into data center operations causes data center managers to make decisions that negatively impact efficiency, contends the company. For instance, data center managers currently reserve 20 percent or more of their power system capacity as a buffer against overload.
The company contens that this methodology has become a standard practice because managers lack a single, real-time view of operating conditions within the IT equipment and the power and cooling systems that support the IT equipment, instead relying on the face plate specifications rather than real-time performance indicators. Virtualization has added to the uncertainty -- and increased the size of the buffer in some cases -- as it creates a dynamically shifting operating environment.
Emerson Network Power expects to have the core Trellis modules available in the fourth quarter of 2011, with subsequent modules rolling out over the following 12 to 18 months. In order to begin achieving the benefits of an optimized data center infrastructure, customers can implement any of Emerson Network Power's existing hardware and software solutions. Each of these solutions will provide clear migration paths to the new Trellis platform and bring the customer a level of DCIM that no other solution in the market currently provides.
More information is available at www.EmersonNetworkPower.com.