North American Network Operators Group

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Re: TIA-942 Datacenter Standardization

  • From: Deepak Jain
  • Date: Wed Aug 31 23:08:41 2005

We have already been asked about where our datacenters fit in with the TIA942 spec in several RFPs! It does cover some good topics, but it also leaves out the design and structure of many things which are far more likely to cause an outage than the copper and fiber physical plants.

Yeah... and it introduces/codifies the concept of "tiers" of datacenters... Yet, its possible to be have "tier 4" access to telecommunications while being a "tier 1" datacenter to operate those telecommunications, or vice versa.

What bothers me as significantly as this tier stuff is that redundancies, procedures, staffing, testing, policies are only mentioned, but not actually discussed (such as the why's, or how to test for the condition). They refer to specific technologies... like "RAID" as an application for a "tier 4" facility. They mention colocation and internet data centers, but don't discuss or even address how your facilities survivability is not fundamentally affected by non-carrier grade equipment being installed by customers -- yet, not surprisingly, the "tier 4" definition specifically talks about all the equipment installed in the datacenter.

There is lots of hand waving... like "beware the EPO".

And yet, it doesn't discuss how facilities like Exodus's NJ facility that had all the power outages or Equinix/Ashburn and Equinix/Chicago which presumably meet at least, the Tier-3 specifications by design... still fail when they are implemented poorly. That 99.99% and above availability have more to do with maintenance and procedures than the equipment you installed initially.

Its more of a document I'd expect to spend a ridiculous some of money to have a consultant produce, not someone who should know better. Great college guide book to discuss "issues" though.

Deepak Jain