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 California State University, Fullerton

SPOTLIGHT ON THE DATA CENTER


University Data Center wall with cables and wires 

  The University Data Center is a mysterious place for those who are not tech savvy.  Titan Tech Talk is here to shed light on this      important, but little understood part of IT.

What is a data center? 

  A data center is a facility used to house servers and associated components, such as telecommunications and storage systems. The University Data Center has redundant or back up power supplies, redundant data communications connections, environmental controls (e.g., air conditioning, fire suppression) and security devices. The University Data Center is operational and staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to ensure reliable operation of campus computing systems.

What is a server?

A  server is a high-power computer or software that directs contact with a central resource or service, such as the Portal, in a network.                                                                                              

How many servers do we have in the Data Center?

  We have approximately 1,100 servers.  60% are virtual as opposed to physical.  400 are hosted for departments throughout campus.

What is the difference between a physical server and a virtual server?

A physical server is one computer.  A virtual server is part of a network that shares computer resources with other virtual servers and the entire server is not dedicated to running a single server software.  Virtual servers use computer resources more efficiently.

What does it mean to host a server?

  A hosted server belongs to a department other than central IT, but is housed in the University IT Data Center.  IT maintains and monitors the hardware for the department.

Why does IT host servers?

Currently there are servers in locations across campus.  These each require monitoring, cooling, fire suppression and security.  The cost of maintaining servers in individual departments is considerably higher than in the University Data Center.  A mandate from the Chancellor’s Office has directed that data centers on CSU campuses be consolidated.   IT is partnering with the colleges and divisions to identify and move servers to the University Data Center.  This will lower costs, conserve resources, and increase security.