A 5-Step Approach to Building an Intelligent Edge

A 5-Step Approach to Building an Intelligent Edge

Many organizations have adopted a cloud-first IT strategy to improve the way they do business. Public, private and hybrid cloud platforms maximize efficiency while allowing IT staff to manage resources, save costs, increase scalability, streamline and coordinate data management, and reduce the human error factor.

But while the cloud has many benefits, it is not always the right fit for modern IT workloads — organizations can experience performance issues when providing services to remote locations. With the growth of the Internet of Things (IoT) and developments in augmented reality and artificial intelligence, many organizations want to extend their cloud to edge data centers that are closer to users and IoT devices. Edge data centers provide faster access to data, enhanced regulatory compliance, and the connectivity needed to collect real-time data that can be pushed into the cloud for analysis.

Building an edge data center can be challenging. In some cases, organizations are faced with implementing an edge data center in a harsh environment with limited space and IT resources. Other times, organizations have an ideal location that allows them to follow traditional data center design practices. In both scenarios, careful planning and execution are required to create a scalable edge data center that supports business needs without impacting existing services or introducing new risks.

Rahi’s engineers have hundreds of years of experience designing, building and supporting data centers that meet customer uptime and SLA requirements. We also look at the bigger picture when choosing technology, with features that support and integrate with existing systems and applications, manage costs, and enable growth of the business.

Our holistic approach is broken down into five steps that are treated individually yet form part of the turnkey solution. The Rahi engineering team meets with each client and carries out a full discovery of requirements for each step. We take time to understand the edge location and existing technology and applications being used, and any preferences for technology vendors and features. This is followed up with a site survey to gain a clear picture of any challenges and obstacles that will need to be considered.

Step 1 – PhysicalThe physical infrastructure is the foundation layer that supports the edge data center. We will review power, cooling and space requirements to support the desired uptime SLA and mitigate risks that could cause outages and impact application or service availability.

Step 2 – SecuritySecurity is crucial to the success and performance of the edge data center. A combination of hardware and software security is needed to protect applications, data and the network from actions or events that could cause serious damage to the organization. Mechanical, electronic or software-defined controls are also needed to prevent unauthorized access to the physical IT environment. Depending on the customer’s requirements, this can be as simple as locks and keys or more sophisticated multifactor authentication with alerting when an event occurs. CCTV systems can be used to monitor the site remotely and provide record retention to support business, security and compliance requirements.

Step 3 – ConnectivityRobust network infrastructure is needed for high-performance, scalable, reliable and secure access to the edge data center. Rahi’s engineers have extensive experience in ensuring that wired and wireless LAN and telecom services support mission-critical applications and edge services. We also provide cabling services and work with innovative technology partners to provide connectivity options to future-proof the network.

Step 4 – Management and DeploymentA secure remote management platform is needed to control the entire technology stack. In most cases, this will need to be a vendor-neutral solution that seamlessly integrates with existing and new systems and addresses the critical needs of networking, in-band and out-of-band IT infrastructure. Because it’s no longer acceptable to dispatch preconfigured equipment containing sensitive information such as user credentials and network configurations, organizations need a management system that enables remote automated deployment of new equipment. Rahi’s cloud-ready solutions allow for a hands-free approach to managing and deploying infrastructure and provide visibility into the entire global IT estate from a single interface.

Having the ability to view all of your assets in a central location gives data centre managers complete control of managing the continuously growing ecosystems, by collecting data metrics from infrastructure and placing into a database that can be manipulated to produce reports to understand resource utilization and assist with capacity planning, understanding growth patterns and generate alerts to help IT teams to detect early warning signals with infrastructure faults and prevent outages happening before they occur.

Step 5 – Compute and StorageWith the huge variety of compute and storage solutions available today, it can be difficult to choose the right platform for various workloads. The edge environment creates an additional set of requirements that must be considered. Rahi’s engineers leverage converged infrastructure and software-defined systems to design an edge data center that is easy to deploy, highly resilient, and capable of operating in the environment dictated by the edge location.

Rahi Systems offer a comprehensive suite of services and solutions focused at edge data centre deployments our passion for engineering drives our team to design and build environments that will enable your business to grow, succeed and overcome bottlenecks that impact productivity. We work closely with the best of breed technology partners and educate our clients with latest innovations and trends in technology, enabling them to choose high quality, reliable solutions that are built to last and enable future proofing, scalability and availability.

Interested in learning more? Why not arrange a meeting with one of our experts to see how we can help you build an edge data center that will overcome your challenges and make your organization more productive.

Scott Millmaker

About Scott Millmaker

Scott Millmaker is a highly passionate technology professional with over 20 years of experience in managing enterprise mission critical IT and Data Centre services. At Rahi Systems, he leads the sales engineering team in the UK. His previous experience includes working at HP CDS, Sun Microsystems, and Logicalis.

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