Headline Dec 07, 2015/ ''' DATA.... - .... DART '''

''' DATA.... - .... DART '''

ENTERING A  TATA COMMUNICATIONS data center in Singapore,  -one of the 44 that global telecommunications company has throughout the world, maybe more difficult than getting into the Kremlin or the White House.

It requires a passport precheck weeks in advance, and then two electronic badges to pass through a circular glass-door airlock that looks like an airport X-ray machine.

No cameras, recording devices or other electronic objects are allowed. A fingerprint controlled key accessible to only staff members protects access to the inner sanctum where the computer servers are kept.

The center, is an unobtrusive building in a fairly secret location, is an essential part of the Indian-owned company's end-to-end telecommunications offerings that are used by banks, cloud service providers, Internet companies  -and other businesses  -including by the  Formula One Management company, for its television broadcasts of Grand Prix races and its website.

It is also through another data center in a secret location that the Mercedes team's sound, video and car data passes for each Formula One race.

''The data coming off the car is quiet heavy,'' said Paddy Lowe, technical director of the Mercedes team.

''Every time the car runs, we are getting data real time, and then when it gets into the garage we backfill what we missed from real time because we can't quite keep up with the full data-set." 

So for every run on the track there will be a large data file of signals from the car," he added, "and what you want is the that to be transported to all of the servers as quickly as possible, preferably, in real time or near real time. And the backfill you want to arrive within a minute or something, if that's possible." 

This data center in Singapore has around  1,000 square meters, or about 10,000 square feet, of space in a precise humidity and heat controlled environment.

The space is filled with stacked servers in enclosed cages. There are separate power units on either side of the cages, each coming from a different power grid, so that if one power source fails another one takes over automatically.

Each cage is covered  extensively by surveillance cameras that will record any potential outside interference in case of a breakdown.

The servers' two alternative network connections are fed in independently through two different networks, so that if one drops, the other continues.

Data centers are used for two, three or four different kinds of things," said Mehul Kapadia, managing director of Formula One business for Tata Communications.

"One is for computer storage space. So for  Formula One  Management, it is the data stored there and computing that is going on. In the case of Mercedes, our data centers actually come into play just to ensure the seamless flow of network connectivity."

Some clients have extra cages  -rooms within the room, in effect  -to ensure even greater security.

DATA CENTERS HAVE been around for decades, beginning in the days of the mainframe computer.

But since the late 1990s and the Internet boom, data centers were transformed into more a collection of smaller servers, piled one on top of the other, that perform multiple functions. Most large data centers today use as much electricity as some small towns.

"With connectivity, you need reliability, you need a partner you can trust." said Kapadia. "When we talk about remote operations or things like that, they have a team of engineers sitting there trying to analyze in real time.

You need an absolutely trusted partner on that, in terms of reliable service, service that will always work, that will deliver the parameters you need."

Within the  Mercedes Formula One team, not even Lowe, the technical director, is aware of what's happening behind the scenes in the service his team depends on to win races.

And that is exactly how he and everyone involved want the operation to be functioning : seamlessly.

With respectful dedication to the Students, Professors and Teachers of the World. See Ya all on !WOW!  -the World Students Society:

"' !WOW! : The Global Network "'

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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