Intelligent Data Centres Issue 40 | Page 42

Finding a way forward
For all the reasons highlighted above , and more , we are seeing computing power transitioning to the Edge and Edge data centres , in particular . But with this power comes an element of vulnerability . As consumers continue to demand faster , more efficient services and more IoT devices are added , a greater strain is put on the organisations distributed IT networks , thereby increasing the likelihood of outages .
To keep Edge data centres up and running , there is a clear need for organisations and service providers to put in place proactive monitoring and alerting , to ensure they can remediate networks without the need to send an engineer on site .
Smart Out-of-Band ( OOB ) Management tools can be used to diagnose the problem and remediate it , even when the main network is congested due to a network disruption , or even if it is down completely .
Failover to Cellular ( F2C ) provides continued Internet connectivity for remote LANs and equipment over highspeed 4G Long Term Evolution ( LTE ), when the primary link is unavailable . Easily integrating with existing IT systems and network infrastructure , F2C restores WAN connectivity without the need for manual intervention .
Organisations are also using a combination of automation and network operations ( NetOps ) for zero touch provisioning , effectively getting the network provisioned and up and running , without having to do anything manually . Often , they will want to ‘ zero touch provision ’ their own devices . They will also want to use this technology for the orchestration of maintenance tasks and to automatically deliver remediation in the event of an equipment failure or other technical problem .
That effectively means that organisations can ship new or replacement equipment to site and , using Smart OOB , quickly bring the site up via a secure cellular connection allowing for the remote provisioning and configuration of the equipment in-situ without having to send a skilled network engineer to site . This can deliver huge cost savings for many companies implementing new Edge deployments , especially those trying to do so at pace across multiple geographies . Then following deployment , if a problem develops that results in a loss of connectivity to the production network and one that cannot be resolved immediately , Business Continuity can be maintained with organisations continuing to pass any mission critical network traffic across the secure OOB LTE cellular connection .
Edge Computing is poised to transform the data centre landscape and is already influencing network strategies . The concepts around the Edge are not necessarily new but are increasingly relevant as IoT connected systems continue to scale . Organisations are realising that relying on centralised data centres for the large amounts of sensor and endpoint data that is being collected , simply isn ’ t realistic or cost effective .
What the future may bring
As cloud service offerings increase , content streaming grows and more IoT is integrated , organisations are challenged with diversifying their network initiatives . The more applications and devices that use an Edge network , the greater the strain . As companies and organisations move more and more of their compute load from large data centres to Edge compute locations , they must adjust their network management processes to ensure they continue delivering the always-on uptime that customers expect .
To do this , they must use hybrid solutions that leverage Internet and cloudbased connectivity , as well as physical infrastructure . A combination of NetOps and Smart Out-of-Band Management ensures that organisations have always-on network access to deliver the network resilience needed for fast evolving Edge Computing . �


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