Data Center Modernization

Making Data Centers fit for the Future - Part 2


Important steps on the path to data center modernization

Many of our customers want to make their IT infrastructures ready for the challenges of the future. But if such projects are not to take on massive proportions then it is vital to pay attention to the details. The starting point is a customized, comprehensive examination of the IT applications, processes and structures. In this interview, our process manager Martin Lukas explains the other steps that are important on the path to data center modernization.

Rosenberger OSI performs a complete site survey during which the IT infrastructure is analysed in depth. What is the procedure for doing this?

Martin Lukas: „This is a highly detailed process. We talk to the customer about their IT strategy, their business model, their applications and their pain points. This forms the basis for our analysis, during which we look closely at the existing IT infrastructure in the light of the various identified aspects. This results in the development of an initial planning proposal. Our services cover every stage of datacenter consolidation, starting with advice on the development of an IT strategy through the decision-making phase and the drafting of a detailed concept and on to accompaniment and support during the implementation of the measures.“

What are the key aspects when choosing a particular solution?

Martin Lukas: „When it comes down to it, the technology only takes second place. More important is the business model which has to be transposed into a suitable IT strategy. This determines where the applications run and the data is located. Consequently, the results of the analysis are open to interpretation and allow for the possibility not only of a central datacenter but also of Edge and Cloud computing solutions as potential options.“

That all sounds very complicated: On the one hand, the business model and, on the other, the technical applications. It must take a lot of relevant experience and expertise to find the optimum solution?

Martin Lukas: „Yes, this type of project can very quickly become a mammoth task. This is because just making the strategic decisions regarding the operational model demands very extensive preliminary planning and design effort. The subsequent approach is very different depending on the weighting given to the three underlying options – on-premises (including private Cloud), colocation or public Cloud. Thanks to the very many projects that we have already completed, we are able to call on a vast body of experience."


Procedure for data center consolidation

1. Consider the overall IT strategy:

  • How can you gain maximum benefit from the options offered by a typical hybrid system environment with Cloud and on-prem components?
  • What is sensible and what is necessary when deciding on the location of your IT systems?
  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of Cloudification for your IT sites?
  • Is outsourcing to a colocation datacenter really still “best-practice”?

2. With regard to your legacy IT, what systems and associated applications should remain on-premises?

  • Is the current data center able to cope with this?
  • Or is there a need for a renovation, or possibly even a new-build solution, conversion or revitalization?
  • What might a corresponding concept look like?

3. Analysis and development of a bespoke concept 

  • Analysis of the legacy IT
  • Consulting:
    - What is the right orientation for your system clusters, including the redundancies at the previous sites?
    - What might the future strategy for the IT infrastructure look like for you?
  • Site survey with presentation of the results

What updated requirements have to be taken into account when conducting a data center project?

Martin Lukas: „Every change to the infrastructure – whether it comes about because the data center is closed, is redimensioned or is simply relocated – results in the implementation of new, updated requirements.“

Can you give us some concrete examples?

Martin Lukas: „They include, for example, ensuring that structures are designed to comply with the GDPR. And then there is support for home office working, which has become increasingly prevalent during the Covid pandemic. To further develop the IT and the processes it underpins, it is necessary to provide technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) or Robot Process Automation (RPA). In addition to this, one top priority is to safeguard the corporate IT and data stocks. This applies in particular to enterprises responsible for critical infrastructure, the definition of which has recently been extended.“


What exactly does this mean for data center operators?

Martin Lukas: „First of all, enterprises must be clear about whether or not they are subject to the new regulations on critical infrastructures. These updated requirements regarding the protection of critical infrastructures (KRITIS) have been in force as of 1st January 2022. Businesses that are affected by these are obliged to take appropriate sector-specific, state-of-the-art measures to safeguard their IT systems. More concrete provisions can be found in sector-specific standards, for example the B3S security standard and ISO 27799 for the medical sector. We recommend that all such businesses undertake a critical examination of their existing measures and perform an in-depth analysis in order to identify and evaluate potential discrepancies between the current situation and the legal requirements.“


Martin Lukas, Process Manager Services

Martin Lukas has been the Process Manager Services for 9 years and is responsible for the services that Rosenberger OSI offers in the data centre environment. This concerns the planning, construction and operation of the infrastructure in the data centre.