Schneider Electric demonstrates ‘Cloud in a Box’ solution

Cloud in a box

As businesses migrate their IT to the cloud, and as virtualisation takes hold, physical IT on the business premises is shrinking, particularly in remote, branch and SME offices. This poses challenges for businesses in the form of, among others, space utilisation, right-sizing of cooling capabilities, and adjustments to power and redundancy configurations.

‘Business are starting out with or shifting the majority of their IT infrastructure to cloud computing at a rapid rate – of that there is no doubt,’ said David O’Coimin, solution offer manager for Schneider Electric.

‘That means network connectivity becomes critical. Protecting your connection to the cloud from downtime is essential. A lost connection puts everything on hold and a stalled business haemorrhages money while the problem is fixed. The best approach to take is to mitigate against the down event in the first place, be that equipment failure through overheating or dust ingress, malicious or accidental interference, even the impacts of a power cut can be mitigated against. At the same time, the IT infrastructure is physically shrinking, sometimes down to 10 per cent of what it previously was on site.’

The APC by Schneider Electric ‘Cloud in a Box’ reference architecture demonstrates how to create a compact, flexible, on site physical IT environment, which gives you everything you need to house, monitor and maintain an efficient, well protected, local IT hub, connected to the cloud and free to move, deploying instantly and relocating with you when you rearrange or move offices.

‘Obviously we have been a little tongue in cheek with the actual small cloud appearance,’ added O’Coimin. ‘However, there is metaphorical method behind our madness. Once built, the actual Cloud in a Box solution, which looks from the outside like an office cabinet, will fade from sight, disappearing in among the office furniture.’

The APC by Schneider Electric ‘Cloud in a Box’ solution is a secure, soundproofed, portable environment that enables rapid roll out of unified computing architectures while optimising business space and productivity. Within the walls of the enclosure you will find all the components needed to monitor and maintain effective cloud networking connectivity. This includes a versatile 19 inch server rack, powerful but quiet and low energy ventilation, a basic power distribution unit, Smart-UPS, environmental monitoring, access logging and surveillance plus dust ingress protection, all aimed at ensuring business continuity through issue anticipation, alerts, remote control and redundant power.

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