{% set baseFontFamily = "Open Sans" %} /* Add the font family you wish to use. You may need to import it above. */

{% set headerFontFamily = "Open Sans" %} /* This affects only headers on the site. Add the font family you wish to use. You may need to import it above. */

{% set textColor = "#565656" %} /* This sets the universal color of dark text on the site */

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{% set baseFontWeight = "normal" %} /* More than likely, you will use one of these values (higher = bolder): 300, 400, 700, 900 */

{% set headerFontWeight = "normal" %} /* For Headers; More than likely, you will use one of these values (higher = bolder): 300, 400, 700, 900 */

{% set buttonRadius = '40px' %} /* "0" for square edges, "10px" for rounded edges, "40px" for pill shape; This will change all buttons */

After you have updated your stylesheet, make sure you turn this module off

Is In-Rack or Outside-the-Rack Design Best for Your Data Center?

by Katy Plant on March 14, 2022

When it comes to determining the best data center design configurations —  like choosing between in-rack or outside-the-rack designs — there will never be a one-size-fits-all solution. Each application is entirely unique, and as such, your configuration decision-making should only depend on what’s happening in your own specific environment.



One data center manager may prefer in-rack connectivity because each rack can then protect the copper cabling within for their servers. That doesn't mean another manager won't be looking to free up some of their valuable rack space, leaning them towards outside-the-rack solutions.

If you are currently trying to make an important decision between in-rack and outside-the-rack connectivity, consider the following important questions, provided by Belden:

  1. What is your data center type and location?
  2. How much rack space do you have in your data center?
  3. How is your data center security?




1. Data Center Type and Location

Data center location and environment play a role in whether in-rack or outside-the-rack connectivity solutions will be the right fit for you.

For example, in colocation or edge data centers, you may be relegated to a certain amount of space without the option to grow (expansion may not be an option because of budget or floor space). If these restrictions exist, then they can dictate which connectivity solution will be most efficient and effective.

2. Available Rack Space 

As discussed above, certain types of data centers, whether they be edge, colocation or containerized, may not provide the opportunity to deploy connectivity inside the rack.

In colocation, edge and hyperscale environments, for example, distribution racks may be established by deploying passive fiber panels in a rack. However, this may not be the best decision in the long- term. After a passive rack is installed and fully connectorized, it’s incredibly difficult to move it and reclaim those RUs if you need them for additional compute and storage space.

Decommissioning and moving racks can quickly become expensive and time-consuming, especially if it’s imperative that no outages occur as a result of the change (such as in a healthcare environment where uptime is critical). In these data centers, outside-the-rack solutions eliminate that challenge of reclaiming RU space and help reduce costs (because you don’t have to pay for extra rack units).

3. How is Your Data Center Security?

Who has access to your data center? Consider all of your employees, your customers (in a colocation environment), third-party vendors, maintenance personnel, fire inspectors, etc. How strict are your access policies? Is there heavy foot-traffic throughout your data center?

Deploying outside-the-rack connectivity in this case could lead to security concerns in both colocation and enterprise data centers. In any situation where parties are moving through a data center, there is the risk of disturbing connectivity (either on purpose or by accident).

With that being said, it is also important to consider security standards like PCI, HIPAA, and SSAE. Because of the ultimate protection that in-rack offers for connectivity, it may be a better option for compliance, too.

If you’re trying to choose between in-rack vs. outside-the-rack connectivity for an upcoming project, Belden and Accu-Tech experts can help you make the best decision together. We’ve seen it all and can use our knowledge to help this process. 

Still interested? Read the full Belden blog post >>


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Contact your local Accu-Tech Representative to learn more about Belden solutions, or visit their vendor page here. 

Topics: Belden connectivity datacenterdesignconfigurations

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