Ah, the TV remote control. A giant leap forward for people who want all the power to operate distant equipment close at hand, without getting off the couch.

Some of the same TV nostalgia traits can be found when managing today’s computing infrastructure. Remote control with a Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) solution minimizes travel and brings far away devices into better focus. The ability to remotely control the computing infrastructure saves time and money while reducing the risk of downtime.

The ability to control remotely has become more important now due to dark data center facilities, Edge computing, IoT (Internet of Things) smart devices, and other decentralizing compute infrastructure technologies. The advantages of quickly capturing and processing information close to its source are many:

  • Greater security
  • Lower latency
  • Less strain on networks
  • Better overall performance and user experience

In order to run the distributed compute infrastructure responsibly, a data center manager needs a clear view into all locations and the ability to control devices without physically traveling to each site.

A good DCIM software solution helps achieve remote visibility and control by enabling a data center manager to visualize the physical environment, view and analyze data to make decisions to improve efficiency and mitigate the risk of downtime. A DCIM solution also provides a single pane-of-glass for reporting on data center assets across the distributed compute infrastructure.

Additionally, a fully functioning DCIM solution extends the reach of infrastructure managers to remotely control critical and non-critical systems within dark sites. This is not an “up or down, binary control.” DCIM brings the multi-dimensional ability to remotely:

  • Manage CPU levels
  • Regulate power and cooling
  • Turn devices on or off
  • Adjust fan speed or return air set points
  • Assess changes and provide contingency planning

DCIM best practices eliminate the time and money spent to physically travel to each location and asset to make adjustments.

In fact, with the right device support, (i.e. Modbus, SNMP) DCIM as your super remote control not only reaches CRAC units and UPSs, but extends outside the data center. Now data center operators can remotely control lights, thermostats, desktops and other IoT devices.

While the dawn of the TV remote extended our ease of control remotely, it was singular in its management. Just like the new home network, data centers have evolved into a disaggregated compute infrastructure. From the single-focused remote, we now have multi-dimensional cable boxes controlling our distributed home devices. A comprehensive DCIM solution delivers the same advantages of managing multiple remote devices from a central location – even from the comforts of a couch.

About the Author

Mike Schmitt is Sr. Director Product Marketing at Nlyte Software, the leading data center infrastructure management (DCIM) solution provider for automating the management of infrastructure in data center or colocation facilities.