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News in Brief

Data Center Operations group expands capabilities

In spring 2016, the ITS Data Center Operations (DCOPS) group began expanding its capabilities and function by hiring personnel with specialized skills who can troubleshoot in specific areas.
In a partnership with Jim Gogan, Communication Technologies Assistant Vice Chancellor, and his Networking group, DCOPS filled two positions with networking specialists.

With this action, the Operations Center broadens its skill sets and abilities. In addition to monitoring, tracking and reporting, the group is moving toward being able to do a deeper dive into issues, first in networking and later in security. The group hopes to assist and reduce the time it takes to solve an issue and help groups who have 24/7 support needs.

 New tool provides consolidated server monitoring

ITS has its first organizational view of its servers in one tool and has begun to offer the service to campus. During summer 2015, ITS Enterprise Operations and ITS Middleware adopted and standardized a free, open-source product called Zabbix to monitor all servers.

With Zabbix, ITS gained a consolidated view in one tool for the first time. Within three months, ITS was monitoring more than 3,000 servers on it. This product enables ITS to track such information as disk, memory and CPU use on each server.

“We’re beginning to mature our monitoring model,” said Ray DeCristofaro, Director for ITS Enterprise Operations.

Data Center manages servers for nearly 60 campus units

ITS Data Center Operations (DCOPS) group has about 1,100 non-ITS devices currently in the three data centers it maintains, at ITS Manning, ITS Franklin and ITS Phillips. The group has 59 departments, ranging from Athletics to  Medicine and from Pharmacy to the Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI).

The data centers are open to all campus departments that want ITS to house their servers rather than keep them under desks, in closets or in their own machine rooms.

DCOPS is responsible for the day-to-day management of the three ITS data centers and ensures that all data center equipment is fully functional and responsive to user needs. Additionally, power and environmental conditions in all three data centers are professionally managed and monitored 24/7.

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