October 24, 2014

Office Move


This is what occupied the bulk of my time this year – about 5 months of it in fact, from late April till early October. Lots of things happened during that time and I was very quickly reminded of why I didn’t particularly enjoy Data Center (DC) design and construction projects. Its hard enough coming to an agreement with the contractors on the design, especially when we know what we want, whats available and what the vendor can do and the sub contractors are trying to find ways to do things easily and quickly and hence telling you everything you want “can’t be done” (good thing our main contractor was a solid chap who kept the sub contractors in line for the most part), but when you throw in the estate and facilities management teams who have no clue about DC design and construction and are trying to force every rule in the book down your throats, then its basically a nightmare. The number of people I had to tell off and put down in those 5 months, must have set some kind of record. I’ll spare you the details.

We designed the DC from scratch and thankfully the tender process selected a good vendor to deliver and they (eventually) did. TheĀ  DC has temperature control, water leak detection, FM200 fire suppression, proximity card and biometric access, SMS and email alert systems, a redundant auto cut in/out UPS with an hour long rundown time (an nearly 2 meter high cabinet full of batteries) and remote access/monitoring of almost everything. The DC can take up to twelve 42U racks (yes its small, but comfortable for what we need to do) with each rack drawing a maximum of 7kW of power, 40 network ports and a sustained 16 degree temperature (courtesy of 6 FCUs working on rotation). Not to mention our sweet offices (exact replicas of what we had at the old location) and a tiny lounge area (which is kind of difficult to lounge in given that its 16 degrees outside our offices – maybe time to look at ceiling mounted infra-red heaters).

Pretty happy with how the place turned out and I hope to have all the boxes and stuff we brought up from the old place cleaned up before June next year (hopefully).

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