One of the largest benefits of hosting your IT equipment in a data centre is that you will be protected against power failure. To achieve this, data centres use uninterruptible power supplies (UPSs), sophisticated machines which careful store and control the power coming into the data centre.
What is a UPS?
UPS stands for Uninterruptable Power Supply, and is a piece of equipment which protects the servers and other IT hardware in a data centre from failures and surges in power.
A UPS consists of a large bank of batteries which store a significant amount of power. These batteries sit between the mains power and the servers in a data centre, so effectively the mains power feed is constantly charging the batteries, and these batteries then power the data centre. This protects IT equipment from issues that can arise from being directly plugged into mains power.
A loss of power to IT equipment is a threat to any business. It can be extremely expensive to replace damaged IT equipment, and the costs are incalculable if important data is lost forever. Additionally, downtime caused by power issues will frustrate your staff, damage your reputation, and might annoy customers. It could also cost you more money if you have to pay out SLAs.
What does a UPS protect against?
Data centres deploy UPSs as part of their infrastructure to protect against different issues that can be caused by directly plugging IT equipment into mains power feeds.
1. Power failure
This is the most common type of protection associated with UPS. Thanks to the huge bank of batteries in the UPS, if the mains power fails for any reason, the batteries can keep the data centre powered temporarily, protecting the servers from power failure.
Generally, data centres will have backup generators which can be switched on to power the data centre indefinitely. The UPS serves as a stop-gap measure to keep the servers powered for the time it takes the generators to turn on (around 10 seconds). This means that all of the servers don't lose power even for a split second, and all of your systems and applications stay up and running.
A properly maintained UPS and backup generator system will allow a data centre to never have a power failure.
2. Power surges
Since all of the power passes through a UPS, they also protect against power surges or fluctuations of any sort. There is the potential for IT equipment to be damaged or otherwise knocked offline by sudden power surges from the mains, but the UPS is able to absorb these fluctuations, with the power feed to the IT equipment being unaffected.
How can you take advantage of a UPS?
If you want to protect your business against the disruption and downtime that can be caused by power issues, then equipping your IT with a UPS will be essential.
One option is obviously to commission your own UPS, but this is an expensive and complicated solution, when working with a data centre is a much simpler solutions.
Taking advantage of colocation or cloud services will place your IT in a data centre, so that you're now protected by their UPS and other resilient power infrastructure by default. And it's all included in your monthly fees, without your team having to take on any additional maintenance responsibilities. If you're interested in working with a data centre, check out our services, or get in touch to speak to one of our experts.