We often discuss network documentation in this blog — it is, afterall, what our flagship product netTerrain, does (and well)! netTerrain, in a nutshell, is a […]

What is Data Center Network Documentation?

We often discuss network documentation in this blog — it is, afterall, what our flagship product netTerrain, does (and well)! netTerrain, in a nutshell, is a […]

We often discuss network documentation in this blog — it is, afterall, what our flagship product netTerrain, does (and well)! netTerrain, in a nutshell, is a complete network and data center documentation solution: it encompasses network diagrams/mapping, data center infrastructure management (DCIM), and outside/fiber plant…in one solution.

In this article, we’ll discuss what data center network documentation is and how software such as netTerrain helps get the job done. Data center network documentation is important because IT infrastructures are in a constant state of flux and evolution. With so much change, it’s all but impossible to keep the infrastructure documented by hand and without some degree of automation.

So, what is data center network documentation?

To document your data center, you need to understand your network devices, how many devices you have, where they are, and how they are all connected. Documenting your data center is part documentation and part network mapping or the ability to map your devices into their physical data center and telecom rooms. Software such as netTerrain, our solution, lets you know where devices are located and in which building, floor, and room.

You can manage cabling, know what’s connected to what, and what else has been impacted by an outage. If there’s a network issue, you can quickly perform Circuit Layout Records (CLR) to run a trace route on the cables that may be affected to pinpoint what’s causing an issue. netTerrain makes capacity planning more effective and easier: you know what you have, how you’re using it, and what you need informed based on historical and current insights.

Example of a Circuit Layout Record in netTerrain

Keeping your data center documented helps you solve and avoid common problems such as:

  • Improper resource management because you don’t know what you have and where it is
  • Longer downtime and outages because you don’t have the information you need
  • Inefficient capacity planning due to a lack of information
  • Spending money on unnecessary new hardware and cabling due to improper resource management
  • Zombie servers and zombie cables resulting from a lack of network knowledge

Keeping your data center also helps you boost efficiency, for example:

  • Improve uptime by locating issues and information quickly when an outage occurs
  • Optimize capacity utilization with up-to-date representations of your infrastructure
  • Optimize and pinpoint fiber capacity by tracking cables and fiber strands
  • Reduce costs
  • Reduce time-to-onboard new employees

Example of a data center floor plan visualized with netTerrain

netTerrain provides ‘data center network documentation’, which ties the network topology maps with physical room diagrams, like data center rooms, and telecom rooms, with a complete cable management solution to track your copper and fiber and its fiber strands, both inside and outside the buildings. Sounds good? If you’d like to see netTerrain in action, click here to schedule a software demo.

Fred Koh
Fred Koh
As a seasoned sales executive, Fred Koh serves as Director of Sales and is responsible for Graphical Networks sales and channel partner program, marketing strategy, and operations.

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