The recent proliferation of the internet of things (IoT) and 5G networks has paved the way for the development of new cloud-based applications in a variety of sectors. Many of these applications, such as self-driving cars or wearable medical equipment, require extremely rapid processing, low latency, and high bandwidth to function properly for end users.
Content providers can employ edge data centers to shift much of the processing to the network’s edge closer to the user.
We’ll look at what an edge data center is and some of the advantages it has over typical centralized data centers in this post.
What Is An Edge Data Center?
A data center on the margins of a larger network is known as an edge data center. This design enables the network to bring computer resources physically closer to the end-user, similar to how the nervous system distributes impulses throughout the human body.
While topology and proximity may appear to be minor technical details, they are important features of key IT applications. That’s because latency and throughput are the two most essential performance factors for an end-user in this sort of network.
For edge data centers, proximity is a deciding element in latency. This is a challenge for applications requiring processing durations of less than 10 milliseconds, such as augmented reality, linked car technologies, and 4K video streaming. The path data travels, which generally involves numerous “hops” between a data center and the end-user, is the reason for bad latency. Slower transmission is possible because of these hops, and the more hops there are, the higher the overall latency.
In edge infrastructure, the distance between the data center and the end-user has an influence on data throughput or bandwidth. Edge applications like mobile video and IoT necessitate data throughput that was previously unheard of prior to the introduction of contemporary 4G/5G mobile technologies.
We can look at real-world supply chain networks to see how throughput affects edge computing. Consider Amazon, which has a large number of local fulfillment locations around the country. Customers don’t have to wait for delivery from a regional warehouse, for example, because Amazon maintains such centers filled with popular products. The client receives their things sooner since they are shipped from a nearby fulfillment location. Even if one fulfillment center does not have its products in stock, there are others nearby that do. As a result, customers receive their goods faster, and Amazon can fulfill more orders than if it is just delivered from regional warehouses.
Edge data centers function in a similar way. When consumers request data, it is sent from a nearby edge center rather than a typical data center located further away. Edge centers can also pump out more data because they’re connected in a mesh-like structure. The message is that end-users need a data center that is less than 10ms to achieve the best throughput to their different devices.
Characteristics of an Edge Data Center
Clearly, the optimal consequence for the end-user in terms of latency and throughput is to locate computational capabilities in near proximity. This removes data center hops, allowing for the most data to be sent over high-speed 5G or fiber-optic broadband. And it’s all about location when it comes to edge computing.
But aside from proximity, characteristics of an edge data center include:
- Located Close To Users
The primary goal is to reduce latency and increase throughput; physical proximity to end users ensures that roundtrip network time is minimal.
- One Part Of A Bigger Network
The edge data center is rarely the only part of the network. There may be larger central data centers that data gets propagated in a “hub-and-spoke” type system. There may also be many edge data centers distributed across some larger geographic areas.
- Fast Processing Power
In addition to minimizing network latency, the processing itself must also be fast to ensure the end users’ requests are completed quickly.
To achieve proximity, edge data centers are typically small so that they can fit wherever they need to be located. The exact size can range widely depending on the application and how close it needs to be to the user to get the required latency.
- Easy To Maintain
Because Edge data centers are often distributed over a wide geographic area, maintaining these sites is not like a traditional data center. The edge data centers should be designed with maintainability in mind and with consideration of the supply chain. Given the low latency needs of most applications that rely on edge computing, the cost and downtime of significant maintenance would be prohibitive.
The Benefits Of An Edge Data Center
You may provide several benefits to your consumers by creating a network employing edge data centers:
1. Provides Faster Service and Increase Bandwidth Over Traditional Data Centers
Data can be serviced faster than it would be in a bigger remote data center by putting the data center closer to users. This is due to the fact that the data must travel a shorter distance and pass through fewer network components like switches and routers. Furthermore, because edge data centers often process smaller percentages of a network’s overall data, computing is generally quicker.
2. Enables Resilient Networks
Traditional data centers are either multi-tenant, where several customers or organizations house their servers in the same area to save money, or enterprise, where only one company is supported. The disadvantage of these centralized nodes is that downtime or interrupted service might result in millions of dollars in application disruptions. Edge data centers, on the other side, establish a mesh coverage in which one data center’s downtime is covered by other edge data centers. End-users and edge applications benefit from the increased resilience.
Edge systems require less hardware and maintenance than traditional data centers since they are tailored to the particular workflow requirements. This may save a lot of unneeded costs and make steadily expanding the network to meet demand much more cost-effective.
Edge data centers’ modular design not only saves money but also enables fine-grained modification based on the planned use. An IoT device that analyzes photos, for example, may require more GPUs than CPUs, which is unusual in a traditional data center.
The network may expand as needed based on demand by keeping the edge data centers small and flexible. Scaling software designed on a distributed systems architecture — where components operating on various networks or platforms may still interact with one another — requires just the addition of edge data centers to the network; the rest of the system can effectively remain the same. The flexibility to add data center units from a manufacturing capability is the most crucial part of the deployment in this case.
Implementing Scalable Edge Data Centers With AKCP
For dispersed networks and current cloud applications, edge data centers are critical in supplying enormous volumes of data at high speeds. However, creating a cost-effective and sustainable edge center necessitates working with a supplier who offers modular components that can be quickly deployed and scaled like AKCPro Server.
AKCPro Server is our world-class central monitoring and management software. Suitable for a wide range of monitoring applications. FREE to use for all AKCP devices. Monitor your infrastructure, whether it be a single building or remote sites over a wide geographic area. Integrate third-party devices with, Modbus, SNMP, and ONVIF compatible IP cameras.
AKCPro Server also integrates all environmental, security, power, access control, and video in a single, easy-to-use software making it the perfect solution for every edge data center’s need.
Build up your data center with a wired or wireless Rack+ system to monitor environmental and power conditions on an individual cabinet level. With AKCP’s system architecture and variety of sensors, this can scale up to a complete Smart Data Center monitoring system. Integration of mainline power monitoring, CRAC systems, and backup power, centrally monitored with AKCP Pro Server.
Make adjustments to your data center environment, and instantly see the effect it has on PUE numbers. Run your data center at its optimum condition for cost savings and server health.
- Live PUE numbers
- Control and monitor CRAC units
- Thermal mapping of cabinets
- Integrated solution
- Control and monitor access to cabinets
- Control and monitor access to rooms
- Monitoring of complete power train
- Free DCIM software