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Increased cooling, flooring and power demands call for new data centre

Net24 is one of New Zealand’s leading web hosting and data hosting providers. It has been providing robust, secure and fast New Zealand based web hosting services to businesses since the company’s inception in 1999.

Company

Net24

Sector

Web Hosting Provider

Location

New Zealand

 

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challenge

The current data centre facility was at capacity and insufficient to support the rapid growth of the company

The cooling being used in the current data centre facility was conventional and not suitable for high-density blade servers

Solution

APC’s InfraStruXure solution – on-demand architecture for power, cooling and services into a rack-optimised format

APC’s Hot Aisle Containment systems – to improve cooling efficiency and predictability

APC’s MGE Galaxy UPS – for high efficiency reliable back-up systems for data centres

Benefit

Reduced cost and carbon footprint through use of precision power and cooling solutions that are energy efficient and provide highest levels of reliability

Environmental monitoring helps to avoid downtime by alerting the IT team of heat, humidity and moisture anomalies

Overhead cabling reduces time spent manual handling equipment

Modular set-up of equipment means data centre can grow with the business

As the business grew, the original data centre and its equipment became inefficient and inadequate in meeting the needs of the business. Net24 was moving a lot of its data to high-density blade servers, which create a significant amount of heat and load on the racks. It needed to upgrade its current facility to meet the new heat and power requirements of this environment.

In the first instance, Net24 looked at how it might expand or redevelop the current data centre facility to meet its new data centre requirements. However, cooling inefficiencies – the current data centre facility was using conventional cooling which was not sufficient to cool high-density blade servers – and issues with the floor loading, meant the current site was not suitable. Net24 took advantage of a larger ground floor facility which became available at the time that Net24 was contemplating the upgrade.

Net24 evaluated data centre infrastructure solutions from APC and several other major data centre infrastructure suppliers. After consulting the APC presales engineers and APC partner Dataguard, the company selected APC. APC’s technology was a perfect fit for the organisation’s power and cooling requirements and the in-built efficiencies of the equipment made it stand out from all other options.

The company had also previously used APC’s UPS technology in the original data centre and were very pleased with the equipment and support they had already received.

The solution

According to Net24’s Technical Director, Nikolai Schupbach, “After meeting with Dataguard and the APC team we were convinced that, in comparison to other options, APC’s offering was the one that stood out in terms of technology, pricing and support.”

APC’s InfraStruXure solution provides Net24 with “on-demand” architecture for power, cooling and services into a rack-optimised format. To work effectively as an integrated system, all three elements of power, rack and cooling are highly manageable and serviceable.

Net24 also uses APC’s Hot Aisle Containment system, which improves cooling efficiency, high density capability and predictability more than row based cooling alone. The system contains the heat by sealing off the hot aisle, so the hot exhaust is captured at its source, before it has a chance to mix with the cooler ambient air. Catching all this hot air effectively makes cool air distribution a secondary issue. The In-row with Hot Aisle Containment solution is around 30% more efficient than traditional cooling methods.

Net24 is also using APC’s environmental monitoring tools which feed real time information on the rack temperature, humidity, power consumption and power capacity to a central management dashboard.

APC’s offering was the one that stood out in terms of technology, pricing and support

As well as the above equipment, Net24 is also using two APC MGE Galaxy UPS systems as the back-up for the new data centre facility. Due to the nature of its business, Net24 needs a reliable back-up system. As a web-hosting company it cannot afford for its clients websites to be out of operation in the event of a power failure.

Business benefits

“In comparison to other options, APC had the complete package - an end-to-end data centre solution that was modular and scalable to meet the needs of our business” said Schupbach.

APC’s Infrastructure solution has improved Net24’s data centre space. It features an overhead cabling management system which means no raised floor, no cable mess under the floor and no loss of cooling efficiency when opening up the raised floor to work on the cabling.

For Net24 as a growing business, one of the most valuable aspects of APC’s solution was the modular design. “We can start out small, at 50 per cent of maximum capacity, but can expand easily as necessary, which means lower initial capital outlay for us,” said Schupbach. “APC will deliver us new equipment as our business grows and, from our past experience, we know it will be delivered on time and within our budget.”

According to Schupbach, “APC is at the forefront of data centre innovation. Our partnership with APC has proved very successful.

 

 
 
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