12.17. Managing Information About Data Center Resources

By Hassan Jannah, December 2013.

Overview. Nowadays, there is an app for almost everything! Yet, we show little or no regard to what happens behind our shiny little screen until something breaks down and our lives descend to near chaos. That is the conundrum of IT guys. The truth is that IT solutions are, in many cases, fragile things that need constant care. This is no easy task. In fact, most of the cost and effort involved in IT solutions is maintenance. A million things could go wrong. Words like preventive maintenance, service monitoring, business continuity, and disaster recovery are examples of the different activities done to maximize availability, and expedite troubleshooting. Everyone involved with these activities needs access to resources. Above all, they all need access to information.

What is being organized? IT data centers have both physical and digital resources. Physical resources include the facility (i.e., building), utilities, computer hardware (e.g., network switches, cables, servers, storage, etc.), and, also people. Digital resources are much fuzzier to define. A simplistic approach could classify them into data and applications. Each category can be further sub-classified into an entire ontology. The complexity increases when you consider the great number of potential resource types that can be created by combining physical and digital resources. Capturing, storing, and maintaining information about these ...

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