Data Center Tiers: Definition and Differentiation
In data center, there are classification levels called Tiers. As it stands now, there are four tiers – tier 1, tier 2, tier 3, and tier 4. They are defined differently. Have you heard about the definition and differentiation of data center tiers? If you are looking for information about data center tiers, you have come to the right place. Find all the answers here!
Definition and Differentiation of Data Center Tiers
Data center is classified into four different tiers. Data center tiers are defined based on the requirements of each type of data center operator, with a focus on redundant components, critical load distribution paths, cooling, and many other specifications. The analogy is like a hotel, the better facilities, the higher its stars. Data center tiers come from the lowest (tier 1) and to the highest (tier 4), tier 1 is the simplest infrastructure, while tier 4 is the most complex and has the most redundant components.
Each tier of data center has different classification and has its own terms. The terms of each tier are:
Tier 1: Basic Site Infrastructure
Tier 2: Redundant Site Infrastructure Capacity Components
Tier 3: Concurrently Maintainable Site Infrastructure
Tier 4: Fault Tolerant Site Infrastructure
Let’s take a closer look at the explanation of each tier of data center.
1. Tier 1: Basic Site Infrastructure
Tier 1 has the IT equipments and components that are only operated by one distribution line and one uplink per server (non-redundant). Tier 1 is mostly used by companies that have their own data centers and are operated by their internal teams.
Companies that use tier 1 data center generally run small businesses with an uptime classification of 99.671% – uptime refers to the percentage of power supply operations for a year. In tier 1 data center, the maximum downtime is 28,8 hours per year.
2. Tier 2: Redundant Site Infrastructure Capacity Components
Tier 2 data center spesifications are almost similar to tier 1, but tier 2 already has redundant component in the data center, which means that all components already have backup resources. In addition to having an UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) that is backed up by one unit, tier 2 data center also must have a backup generator as preparation if power outages occurs.
In tier 2 data center, it consists of 99,741% uptime with maximum experience 22 hours of downtime per year.
3. Tier 3: Concurrently Maintainable Site Infrastructure
In Indonesia, most data center providers provide tier 3 data center. Tier 3 has all the specifications and components of tier 2 data center. The difference is that tier 3 data center must have more than one power source and network (multi-network link), and tier 3 facilities require no shutdowns when equipment needs maintenance or replacement. Therefore, all facilities in tier 3 data center must be supported by strong power source and network. The uptime rate on tier 3 is 99.982% with only 1.5 hours of downtime per year.
4. Tier 4: Fault Tolerant Site Infrastructure
In tier 4 data center, in addition to use a UPS with one backup that are operated in different network, the UPS and its backup must also be on a different track. The analogy is like tier 4 data center stands on two legs.
Besides having the same specifications as tier 3 with the addition of “standing on two legs”, the tier 4 data center has an uptime rate of 99.995% with a downtime tolerance of only 30 minutes per year. All of its components, including uplink and storage are fault-tolerant (refers to the ability of a system to continue operating without interruption when one or more of its components fail).
Along with the needs of companies from all sizes to start using technology to drive efficiency and improve services, utilizing data center services and partnering with a trusted data center provider must be company’s top priority. Data center is designed to support digital transformation programs and open new business opportunities.