Congrats on taking the initiative towards building your own on-site server room! It's worth noting, however, that this growth comes with growing pains. Before you start tossing equipment in an extra room in your office, let’s take a look at what to consider when building a new server room for your business.
1. Server Room Security
If your business is relatively open and doesn’t require secure access to your offices, you may consider limiting access to space where your server room will exist. Even if your offices are protected from outside foot traffic, you may consider making access to the server room exclusive to those authorized to work with the necessary components. Cybersecurity begins with good old fashioned regular security.
2. Monitoring Your Server Room
Though it sounds like something out of a Jason Bourne movie, having eyes on who enters your server room isn’t a terrible idea. Using either an ID-centric door lock system or motion-activated surveillance cameras, being able to keep tabs on what goes on in your server room can be handy.
3. Controlling the Climate
Server equipment is sensitive to changes in temperature, humidity, and other moisture that may be present in your typical office space. This makes keeping your servers in an ideal climate vital. For this reason, you may consider independent climate control measures such as room-specific thermostats or even HVAC equipment specifically for the server room. Also, don’t forget to allow a way for you to monitor the climate conditions of the server room remotely.
4. Plan For Growth
If you’ve ever peeked your head in the server room of an established company, it may feel roomier than you thought it would. This is because it’s better to have room and not need it than need room and not have it for future growth. Keep your possible future server needs in mind when designing your server room.
5. Power Needs and Backup
Server equipment is not only power-hungry but vulnerable to power outages. The power to your server space should not only be able to power the equipment adequately but should have a backup protocol in case of a building-wide power outage.
6. Cable Management
Mismanaged cabling in a server room not only makes it looks like a rat’s nest but can also make working in the server room difficult for IT personnel. Before you begin installing server equipment in your server room, establish a cable management strategy. Color coding, numbering, cable grouping, and other relatively simple cable management strategies can make working in the server room more efficient.
7. Server Room Internet and Telecom Connectivity
How your server room communicates with the rest of your business as well as the internet can make the difference between IT success or IT headaches going forward. Take the speed requirements and connection pathways into consideration when determining how to optimally connect your server room to external systems.