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Data Centers Coming To a City Near You (datacenterfrontier.com) 39

1sockchuck writes: There are more wired businesses than ever in towns and cities across America. That's why the data center industry is coming to smaller cities you may not think of as technology hubs. Industry executives say the convergence of cloud computing, Big Data and the Internet of Things will require data centers in many places outside the traditional "Big Six" markets (Northern Virginia, New York/New Jersey, Chicago, Dallas, Silicon Valley and Los Angeles). "We're seeing success in the Tier 2 markets," said Kevin Bostick of 365 Data Centers, which operates in markets like Buffalo, Nashville and Pittsburgh. "We feel very confident with our ability to grow in these markets, especially given what we've seen over the past six months." Commercial real estate brokers confirm the trend, citing strong interest in the Pacific Northwest (especially Portland).
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Data Centers Coming To a City Near You

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  • PNW (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Dutch Gun ( 899105 ) on Saturday October 17, 2015 @06:01AM (#50748887)

    The Pacific Northwest seems like a reasonably good choice for data centers, at least for serving this corner of the country. Lots of clean, cheap hydro power, near major tech industry in Seattle area, and there's plenty of water for cooling.

    • Re:PNW (Score:4, Funny)

      by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Saturday October 17, 2015 @08:24AM (#50749095) Homepage Journal

      The Pacific Northwest seems like a reasonably good choice for data centers, at least for serving this corner of the country.

      That's like saying my kitchen seems like a reasonably good location for a sandwich shop, at least for serving my house.

    • by PPH ( 736903 )

      Lots of clean, cheap hydro power,

      Not any more. They're tearing down the dams.

      and there's plenty of water for cooling.

      Won't somebody please think of the fish?

      • Re:PNW (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Dutch Gun ( 899105 ) on Saturday October 17, 2015 @12:56PM (#50749967)

        No one is going to be breaching the Grand Coulee Dam or the several dozen other major dams in the near future. I wouldn't extrapolate a few small, obsolete dams being torn down into some sort of trend.

      • Hydro power is anything but clean and cheap, if you look at the actual environmental effects of building the stuff and preventing the floods that many of those dams were built to prevent.

        Somebody else mentioned the risk of serious earthquakes - that doesn't mean you shouldn't put a data center there, both for low operating costs and proximity to part of your customer base, but you need to look at having backup capacity in other geographical areas. (Which you need to anyway, since that data center in Oklaho

    • Well, looking at this I would not locate anything expensive or critical in that area:
      http://geomaps.wr.usgs.gov/pacnw/rescasp1.html [usgs.gov]
      This particular gif is an attention grabber:
      http://geomaps.wr.usgs.gov/pacnw/graphic/a2.gif [usgs.gov]
      The Pacific Northwest is one of those spots on earth where a lot of tectonic action (both thrust and subduction) mix with volcanic instability to churn the crust of the planet:
      http://geomaps.wr.usgs.gov/pacnw/map.html [usgs.gov]
      I know every area has it's own hazards (http://earthquake.usgs.go [usgs.gov]
      • Well, it's a good thing Silicon Valley is safely situated far away from dangerous faultlines, right? ;-)

        I've lived in or near the Seattle area all my life, and I'd say I've noticed a minor earthquake perhaps once every five years or so on average. I've never experienced even a moderately sized quake during my entire lifetime. I'm sure it looks rather dangerous when you're viewing a large regional map with all the quakes from the last century or two overlaid. In reality, I'd bet the odds of a major quake

    • The Pacific Northwest seems like a reasonably good choice for data centers, at least for serving this corner of the country. Lots of clean, cheap hydro power, near major tech industry in Seattle area, and there's plenty of water for cooling.

      Quebec Canada is an excellent choice for a data centre and for the following reasons:
      Continuous and very very low cost electric supply (I bet it can be around 4 cents per KWH) from James Bay.
      As Winters are cold, the buildings can be heated from the heat given off by the equipment
      Summers are not extra-ordinarily hot -- The site would not need massive Air Conditioning.
      Employee skills are on a par or above many other localities. (virtually Free University and well educated graduates)
      Multi-lingualism -- great p

  • by galphanet ( 1124917 ) on Saturday October 17, 2015 @06:51AM (#50748949)
    Why building datacenters ? Let's put everything in the cloud instead ! (irony inside)
  • Will there ever be small-scale, self-storage type data centers?

    Most of the data centers I've been in are large and elaborate affairs, with extensive security systems, a dozen or more (that I could see) on site staff, and all the requisite complexity of systems that allows them to house 10s of thousands of square feet of racks.

    This scale and complexity comes at a price, though, which often seems to price out SMBs looking for just an incrementally more reliable place to house offsite systems than the overload

    • There are tons of DC's that have maybe a couple guys on days and an on call. L3 and the likes has no manged services DC's. You can easily get a rack with 20a 110v for under a grand a month (a decent hunk of that price is power/cooling). Lots of places offer half and quarter racks. A quarter rack is about as small as you can go where there is customer access since it's about as small as you can make it. Piles of places will let you ship a 1ru where they and stack it for you for a very nominal fee.

    • by fermion ( 181285 )
      This was typical several years ago. Maybe 40 or 50 hot swappable servers with a load balancer in front. I remember when the load balancers became very good and affordable. Two different high bandwidth internet connections. Even a liquid fuel generator that would in principle keep everything up for as long as there was fuel. I built a simpler version of this back in the late 90's.

      The problem was this is expensive. In particular you generally have one or more very expensive persons who main duty it is t

    • In my city (Ottawa), we have a few such datacenters. They'll have one guy working the sign-in desk in the daytime, and I think they're on call after-hours. They have biometric access doors, so anyone with a private rack or cage can come and go as they please. I never counted, but I'd estimate maybe 250 racks or so. It's pretty small. Now, they are not exactly cheap, but we Canadians love to get financially sodomized by our ISPs, or so I've been led to believe.

    • (I read about this on the net, so almost all of the details may be wrong.) There's some company in Norway or somewhere that has a business model of putting small datacenter units into people's homes, with a narrow rack of computers and storage, using them as electric heaters, which reduces their HVAC and real estate costs and takes advantage of fiber infrastructure.

    • by Cramer ( 69040 )

      The problem with a self-storage type arrangement is the difficulty in securing them. For example, cutting through the sheet metal wall between units is simple, and there's no one there to (a) notice, or (b) try to stop you. Most storage units are filled with moderately useless junk, so no one bothers to break into them. When you have thousands of dollars worth of servers (and priceless data) in there, thieves will take notice.

      (This isn't new, either. Unattended DC's have been broken into many times. Rarely

  • Data Centers Coming To a City Near You

    There are no cities near me. Back to the click-bait headline drawing board.

    • I'm thinking that a lot of folks in Europe, will be choosing data centers close to their cities at home. Being that the NSA has unlimited access to all data centers in the US . . . it is not a bad idea.

  • FTFA:

    This is being driven by two trends:

    • Businesses’ growing reliance upon the Internet, and preference to house their data and applications in close proximity to their offices.
    • The growth of bandwidth-intensive consumer applications like video and gaming, where content must move closer to end users to avoid “lag” and poor performance.

    Not exactly the same forces that drove the movement from large, centralized mainframes to small, distributed desktop computers, but really, didn't we see this coming all along?

  • It's unusual for the Rt. 128 Ring (including Boston and Cambridge) to not be included in a list of the top technology hubs in the U.S.
  • Las Vegas is not considered a big data-center hub, but Switch has had several large data-centers here, and the previous record-holder for the largest data-center in the world here for a few years...

  • by Jethro ( 14165 ) on Saturday October 17, 2015 @01:16PM (#50750051) Homepage

    Any decent-sized city already has dozens of datacenters. Any large city probably has hundreds. Data centers are kind of like parking lots.

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