To Maximise the Network Closet, Start with the Fundamentals

Network closets come in all shades and hues. In larger firms, it may be one limb on a tree of many, while in smaller companies it may function as the sole computing hub. Either way the network closet typically contains the same components and serves a mission critical function, so it matters a great deal that it is optimally arranged, equipped, maintained, and monitored.
“APC by Schneider Electric, distributed by Westcon-Comstor, offers an array of network closet solutions that are 100% compatible with multi-vendor networking and server equipment,” says Louise Taute, Comstor Director at Westcon-Comstor Southern Africa. “These solutions run the gamut of high strength, space optimised racks and high-density cable management, power distribution and protection, physical security and cooling solutions, and standalone security and environmental monitoring.”

Racks and Enclosures
Racks are the fundamental building block in all network closets and key to ensuring the efficient organisation of what is likely a tight space. In secure network closets open frame racks of the 2- or 4-post variety are the product of choice, because they allow for unobstructed airflow and ready access to switches and servers. APC offers both varieties of open frame racks as well as its NetShelter CX “server room in a box” products; its NetShelter SX feature-rich rack enclosures; and a range of specialty enclosures to meet even more and different needs.

Cable Managers
Proper cable management in the network closet is critical to maintain the integrity of cables, allow for quick cable change-outs, and to ensure unobstructed airflow. APC’s selection of high-density vertical and horizontal cable managers work seamlessly with its racks to make the once onerous task of cable management a cinch.

Constant, Clean Power
As in the entire data centre, the network closet requires the flow of uninterrupted, well conditioned and properly distributed power in order to function properly. However large or small the network closet, APC’s comprehensive line up of uninterrupted power supply (UPS) devices, power conditioning units and power distribution units, which range from basic units to advanced ones with remote monitoring capabilities, make it easy to achieve the constant flow of well conditioned power.

Keeping Cool
However much airflow is achieved via good organisation, the typical network closet will nevertheless need additional input like that provided by APC’s Wiring Closet Ventilation Unit. This compact, efficient cooling unit can moreover by paired with the APC Environmental Manager to yield the ability to remotely monitor and control the cooling of the network closet.
“It’s an interesting fact that there are 43 times more small server rooms and network closets, worldwide, than there are large data centres. It’s another well known fact that APC has the manageable, adaptable, compatible and reliable physical infrastructure and physical infrastructure management software needed to turn even the smallest space into an IT environment,” ends Taute.

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