After the third dismantling of a city data center in search of a site most protected from natural disasters, the mayor of the American city of Altamonte Springs (Florida) found an unusual place
- an old unused water tank in the very center of the city. This is a huge tank that used to hold 2.9 million liters of water. Next to it, two extensions were made: one for network equipment, the second - office space.
According to the engineers of the urban IT department, there is no better place to find: 20-centimeter walls of reinforced concrete perfectly protect against any storm.
However, it is not entirely clear why the network equipment was placed in the annex, and not directly in a protected building.
Simultaneously with the relocation, engineers made a cardinal upgrade of all equipment, abandoned the old Spectra Logic AIT-3 backup system on magnetic tapes. Such systems are not very reliable. After the hurricane of 2003, the process of restoring all the information from backups took two and a half weeks, and some was lost.
The construction of a new data center cost the city budget $ 2 million and a half years of work. Installed 12 quad-core Dell servers. Two Xiotech 7000 SAN storage systems for 25 TB cost $ 250,000, VMware virtual machines $ 5,000 each (total $ 60,000), building preparation $ 1.5 million.
SAN systems duplicate each other, everything is virtualized, so that in the event of a disaster, the performance of the data center is restored within 24 hours. Magnetic films were thrown away, optical disks and microfilm were used for archiving. A backup for the last 30 days is stored on hard drives.
The water tank in Altamont Springs is another example on the list of the most exotic places
for hosting data centers. The list includes churches, supermarkets, cargo barges, caves and a broken particle accelerator.