Data Speed Migration

Data Center Speed Migration: Are you Ready?

Written by Bill Roberts, President, Network Services, Datatrend Technologies, Inc.

Data Center Speed MigrationI often hear a shout across the house from one of our family smartphone, tablet, ebook users, “Dad, our wireless is slow today” or “it’s taking forever to send this pic”. I never seem to hear, “Dad can you throttle down our internet, it’s running way too fast”. This need for speed at home, at corporate offices, and essentially all over our exploding mobile world is putting tremendous pressure on data centers and cloud operators to keep pace.

There is good news for data center planners and cloud operators. Our current 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) electronics speeds are hitting the accelerator to 40 GbE and 100 GbE. Better news, our speed freaks at IEEE are putting the pedal to the metal, and already working on 400 GbE.

The challenge for data centers today is how to make sure our cabling infrastructure “data road” builders can keep pace with providing infrastructure for all this speed. It will be a challenge to cost-effectively migrate to speeds of 400 GbE. A greater challenge might be that this efficient migration to accommodate the next generation server, switch, router, and storage device might be different for each data center.

Internet-SpeedData center planning is an ever changing balance between capacity space, power consumption, flexibility, cost, and speed. Server migration should move to 40 GbE (and in some cases 100 GbE) within the next 4 years. We might have to wait until 2024 for 400 GbE, but the guess is that IEEE will probably get us there faster.

A smart goal for data center network designs is to make sure the backbones’ speeds can handle the future server capabilities two years in advance. Multi-mode fiber backbones are dominant today. They provide the right balance of speed, performance, density, and cost. However, as data centers build for greater speeds and distance, single-mode fiber backbones will be the next “go-to” fiber. A successful migration plan will probably not be an “all-at-once” conversion from multi-mode to single-mode fiber. Consequently, distribution frames and fiber panels that support both multi-mode and single-mode need to be provisioned for installation as migration plans are made.

Power Consumption: every time we increase our data speeds, it seems more energy is needed. However, lower-power optical engines have been developed to help reduce power consumption, saving incredible watts of energy. There are new 25 gigabit optical engines out there that can reduce more than 60% of the power current engines are using. These savings can only happen if the most efficient highest data transmission fiber optics are designed into future data center migrations.

The changing trends in and around the data center signify a new era in data center management, centered on efficiency and cost effective solutions, without sacrificing performance, scalability, and the need to support the ever-changing needs of lines of business. Organizations can take advantage of these opportunities by establishing a structured cabling infrastructure that will support the business well into the future. Because it’s not just network infrastructure that will be affected by these data center trends – bottom lines will be, too.

For more information on Data Center Speed Migration Designs from Datatrend, click here or contact Bill Roberts at You can also consult with a Datatrend representative by calling 800-367-7472.