The Gartner Data Center Conference was attended by more than 2250 participants and 56 analysts from Gartner. Based on the social sentiment, the experience was transformational and has set the pace for the leaders to pave the way for the future of the data center industry. The attendees included 29% from Management, 26% Directors, 10% Vice Presidents, 9% Architects and Engineers and 8% CXOs. Various business domains were present, most prominent of those were financial services (13%), manufacturing (11%), services (11%), public sector (9%), healthcare (7%).

Special Report: Gartner Data Center Conference Nov 2013Here are some of the essential highlights and some key takeaways:

  • The compute ratio is gaining significance among most data centers. This ratio measures the computing power of data center equipment’s vs. the energy consumed by them. Underutilization of IT assets is a growing concern and all are focused on increasing operational efficiencies.
  • Long-term staffing needs and retraining existing staff is a priority. Most data centers are facing the risk that they will not have the adequately skilled staff in the future to meet the increasing demands.
  • Web scale IT and how it is often misunderstood as a scalability solution, rather than an agility or cost solution.

There was also an interactive real-time poll and the results revealed significant insights into the processes of the leaders of today.

  • Solid state devices (SSD) and Flash arrays were reported to be the most influential in storage technologies with over 32% respondents indicating that they will prefer these technologies in the next three years. Surprisingly, only 4% of the respondents voted in favor of software defined storage.
  • 62% of the participants mentioned that they were actively considering Software Defined Networking (SDN), whereas 22% were ignorant about it.
  • 23% indicated that they would be building a new data center in the next two years. This is down from the 29% in 2012.
  • An ambitious 8% had goals of reducing I&O costs by more than 25% in the next three years, while 80% planned to reduce costs by 5 to 25%.

The conference inspired the next generation of leaders and brought about value when peers shared their lessons learned and visions and plans for the future. It gave strategic as well as tactical insights into the industry and will result in many more innovations in the years to come.

Alex Carroll

Alex Carroll

Managing Member at Lifeline Data Centers
Alex, co-owner, is responsible for all real estate, construction and mission critical facilities: hardened buildings, power systems, cooling systems, fire suppression, and environmentals. Alex also manages relationships with the telecommunications providers and has an extensive background in IT infrastructure support, database administration and software design and development. Alex architected Lifeline’s proprietary GRCA system and is hands-on every day in the data center.