One of the most overlooked (and sadly forgotten) components within the datacenter is the efficiency and neatness of the racks that hold the critical IT technology. Organizations large and small, we've all seen them and have been there: racks that are a jumble of messy wires that are very difficult to navigate. It's one of those things that everyone recognizes must be addressed, but rarely is done as it becomes much lower on the priority list versus keeping the technology up and running to serve the needs of the organization.
Rack environments that are inefficiently cabled and less than optimized are not just aesthetically unpleasing to the eye, they can be inefficient. They can create inefficiencies that can even cost money; in terms of time to troubleshoot and locate items, requiring more racks needed to fit all hardware components necessary, and even the potential of more cooling—and therefore power—required to keep the technology up and running. All of these can—and often do—translate into additional and unnecessary money spent on supporting the IT environment. Keeping an organized and efficient rack environment is generally a high priority for firms in terms of intentions, but generally not accomplished.
Look at the difference optimization can make
When considering what needs to be done to improve and optimize the rack environment, many things could and should be considered including: cabling, optimal placement of devices, access to the components for service (a big one when something fails or a crisis happens), power and UPS use, and even overall environmental concerns such as temperature and humidity. Cleaning up gives the opportunity to re-label everything (or label it for the first time) and even reevaluate how to do things overall in regards to rack and cabling.
Keeping an efficient rack and cable environment might not be looked upon by many as high value or even important (and sadly this is often the case), but it can sure make life easier and more organized in the datacenter. And that's a good thing.