In large data centres most of the inventory is recorded using a spread sheet, a manual process which is subject to human error and also time consuming. Rittal’s Dynamic Rack Control uses a special 482.6mm (19”) rail that incorporates a RFID reader (aerial), mounted within the rack that allows you to not only manage and update the inventory very easily but to also determine capacity issues and manage maintenance schedules.
RFID (Radio Frequency Identification Device) is a globally standardised technology for the contactless detection of objects in the room. A RFID system is always comprised of 2 components: a reader with an aerial (RFID mounting frame with reader), and a small microchip with an aerial coil on a substrate material (RFID tag).
Rittal use this technology directly inside the rack to log component population completely without contact and in real time. In this way, a current overview of the components installed in the racks, separated according to device category, power consumption or form factor, is possible at any time.
Each RFID tag is unique and has its own ID number. An RFID tag can be attached to anything, i.e. patch panel, server, switch etc. When a tag is attached to a piece of equipment, part of the registration procedure is that the installer has to identify the equipment to the receiver. This information includes the physical dimensions, the weight of the equipment, power draw and also the maintenance details.
Data that is associated with the tag helps the IT manager to not only maintain inventory but also “balance” demand by moving equipment around and determining optimum rack load rating in both power and cooling.
With IT resources being further stretched under the current economic challenges, having any solution that saves basic data centre administration and management is essential.