Service Providers Reveal their Data Center plans in Infonetics Survey on Deployment Strategies

Market research firm Infonetics Research released excerpts from its latest Data Center Deployment Strategies: Global Service Provider Survey, which delves into operator plans for data center expansion, interconnection, capacity, physical servers, virtualization, and SAN and storage technologies. 

.    More operators than anticipated plan to continue investing in Fibre Channel for their data centers, even in the face of growing usage of the newer Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE)
.    The number of data center server LAN connections is growing quickly, with 10 Gigabit Ethernet connections growing the most
.    The average capacity of a data center WAN connection is expected to increase more than twofold from 2012 to 2014
.    While the use of virtual machines in data centers continues to grow, many servers are not yet virtualized

For its 23-page data center survey, Infonetics interviewed incumbent and competitive service providers and cloud specialists that have data centers with at least 100 servers. The survey provides insights into data center interconnection strategies; storage network investments; data network technologies deployed; WAN/internet connection capacities; and number of physical servers, virtual machines, Ethernet and SAN interfaces in use at medium, large, and super data centers.

“Server virtualization has been the focus of the data center industry for several years now, and the largest data center owners and internet content providers like Google are ubiquitously exploiting virtual machines,” notes Michael Howard , principal analyst for carrier networks and co-founder of Infonetics Research. “Yet the reality is the bulk of data center owners are more pedestrian in their deployments, finding it more operationally convenient to leave many areas of their data centers alone, using server virtualization for only select applications.” 

Howard continues: “But to be sure, data center owners want to increase the value of their existing data center assets – no matter the extent of server virtualization – as a means to increase revenue via cloud services, both to keep their current customers satisfied and to attract new customers.”

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Commenting on the new interest in network virualization and Software Defined Networking (SDN), Howard said at the April 3rd Ethernet Technology Summit:

Network operator driver for NFV is quick revenue (via faster provisioning of new services and telecom facilities).” He later stated, “Carriers will implement SDN in ‘contained domains.”