Many campuses have data centers that are inadequate for the rapidly increasing demands placed on them. Lower costs for hardware, hotter electronics, and greater densities for rack-mounted servers, especially in cluster configurations, combined with a steady increase in computing demands, have led to a demand for more data center space. Data centers capable of supporting current and predicted heat and power demands are expensive to build and maintain. Justifying investments in this area might be difficult.
Describing these requests in terms of cyberinfrastructure could enhance the possibility of successful proposals for these resources. Developing a business case and a funding model is also required for successful data center build-out. This document describes issues around developing and supporting data centers on campuses and makes suggestions for approaching data center projects.