In a recent 451 Research report on “Disruptive Technologies in the Datacenter,” authored by Rhonda Ascierto, Daniel Bizo, and Andy Lawrence, industry experts and survey respondents across the data center sector, identified the top ten disruptive technologies that are likely to cause economic and technical change to their businesses. No surprise to us, at number 5 is data center management-as-a-service (DMaaS), with a disruptive rating of 3.63 out of 5. According to 451 Research, DMaaS encompasses a set of new cloud services that leverages DCIM tools to predict and prevent data center infrastructure incidents and failures due to power, environment, mechanical or other mitigating circumstances, such as inefficiencies or capacity shortfalls. The primary drivers for DMaaS solutions are risk mitigation, streamlining operational processes and greater management of digital assets.
In July 2017, we rolled out a set of IBX SmartView APIs, which provide greater visibility into the data center physical infrastructure and services performance within our customers’ IT infrastructures in our global Equinix International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers. By offering a comprehensive set of near real-time and pragmatic representational state transfer (REST) APIs for partners as an extension to our IBX SmartView application, Equinix provides greater flexibility to consume DCIM data.
IBX SmartView APIs and services
Delivered through our Equinix Developer Platform, IBX SmartView APIs enable data center operations teams to integrate their Equinix IBX data center infrastructure assets within their third-party monitoring systems, as if those cages were all on-premises. This supports their customer support team members’ ability to consume real-time feeds using preferred control system native protocols such as OPC and SNMP, without any help from an external IT team. These systems provide configuration capabilities and state monitoring programmability, which are key for “software-defined everything” data center monitoring. This high-level of programmability brings scale to administrative tasks and the ability to rapidly respond to changes in the environment from customer monitoring/control systems.
Protocol Bridge Runtime
A new protocol bridge runtime (Cloud-2-Machine data conversion) capabilities will enable our customers to convert real-time and REST APIs feeds from cloud native protocol (HTTPS) to building management system (BMS) native protocols (i.e., OPC and SNMP). It transforms cloud native protocol into BMS usable feeds and allows them to consume real-time feeds directly from control system native protocols along with protocol specific to end-to-end tag point mapping on a specific format. It is a method of API consumption that is critical to helping customers quickly automate and scale data center monitoring capabilities on a control system native protocol using IBX SmartView REST and real-time APIs (see diagram below).
Protocol converter agent is used to convert standard cloud to proprietary Ethernet protocols suitable for the building management control systems or tools that are used to monitor customers’ data center assets. This agent, along with the protocol bridge runtime software installed at edge data centers, is deployed close to a customer’s local cage/control systems. Customers will then be able to connect to these systems with the protocol bridge runtime to receive data feeds on a control system friendly protocols.
Currently available IBX SmartView APIs
IBX SmartView APIs are broadly classified into two categories: Near real-time and RESTful. These APIs allow customers to build real-time dashboards and integrate real-time feeds with their automation systems. The IBX SmartView API Catalog and solutions will continue to expand in 2018.
APIs that are currently available include:
Near real-time (“Don’t call us, we will call you”) power and asset status feeds that make it easy for Equinix customer to understand more about the status of any electrical and mechanical assets or circuits for a given IBX.
- Power Real-Time API:Near real-time feeds for IoT (M2M) integration, workflow automation and building real-time dashboards through APIs for a given power distribution unit or circuit
- Infra Asset Real-Time API: Real time visibility into core operating infrastructure electrical and mechanical assets status for each customer
With the RESTful APIs, the customer can specify an action using an HTTP verb such as POST, GET, PUT or DELETE.
- Power REST API: Real-time and trending data access to power usage information for customer cabinets and circuits in a given IBX
- Environmental REST API: Real-time and trending access to environmental and operating information to customer IBX footprint
- Alarm REST API: Real-time and historical power, electrical and mechanical, environmental alarm status for the configured alarm definition and conditions
- Infra Asset REST API: Real time and trending visibility into core operating infrastructure electrical and mechanical assets status for each customer
- Location Hierarchy: All the IBX Infra asset details that are relevant to the customer, based on the cage/cabinet location and the installed power circuits
- Real-Time Subscription APIs: APIs to subscribe and configure to real-time events and feeds.