IP addresses and switch ports are becoming increasingly expensive, so data center managers can reduce the cost of deploying intelligent PDUs by using units with IP aggregation capabilities. If deployment costs are a concern, it is important to investigate and understand some of the manufacturer's limitations, as the number of units that can be aggregated on a single IP address can range from 2 to 50. Other features, such as IP aggregation with downstream device self-configuration, can also significantly reduce deployment time and cost.
IT equipment is susceptible to environmental conditions such as temperature and humidity. Smart PDUs can integrate environmental sensors to proactively monitor environmental conditions within the rack, ensuring optimal operating conditions without the need to deploy a separate monitoring solution.
Smart PDUs also provide data center managers with the ability to access the PDU remotely via a network interface or serial connection to monitor power usage and configure user-defined alarm notifications to prevent downtime.
If the PDU's primary network fails, some PDUs provide redundant communications through integration with out-of-band management devices such as serial consoles or KVM switches.
There are a variety of DCIM solutions on the market that provide users with a single access point to view real-time power and environmental data. DCIM can also help data center managers improve efficiency and availability by creating and receiving trending reports that provide facility-wide visibility.