New Industry Products

Raritan Introduces Intelligent PDU To Improve Data Center Operation

April 28, 2008 by Jeff Shepard

Raritan introduced its Dominion® PX, a next-generation intelligent power distribution unit (PDU), to help companies easily determine the actual power usage and capacity in their data centers, monitor rack temperature and humidity, and power sequence and manage IT equipment from anywhere.

Controlled remotely via a Web browser or command line interface, the Dominion PX meters, in real time, power at both the PDU level and outlet level; delivers alerts based on user-defined thresholds; switches outlets; and, supports environmental sensors to monitor temperature and humidity at the rack.

Raritan claims that its PDU provides real-time, detailed outlet-level information on power drawn through individual outlets – whereas other solutions typically provide only an aggregate view of power through the PDU as a whole. As a result, IT administrators and facility managers – through the Dominion PX browser-based interface – can obtain detailed information on the actual energy consumed by individual servers. Optional temperature and humidity sensors plug into Raritan’s PDU to provide real-time environmental information.

The Dominion PX is said to be the first PDU to provide advanced remote power control capabilities based on protocols such as IPMI 2.0 and SMASH. The intelligence and flexibility of the Dominion PX PDU is said to be derived from Raritan’s KIRA™ 100 system on a chip that provides secure TCP/IP access and monitoring capabilities.

According to the company, performance per watt is becoming a new data center metric as a result of skyrocketing energy consumption and costs, and concerns for power availability and data center space. "Optimal power usage is becoming an increasingly important issue for data center and facilities managers," said Herman Chan, Director, Power and Management Solutions at Raritan. "Being able to monitor, analyze and manage power usage at the outlet level means companies can gain visibility into the details of their data center energy consumption. This allows them to pinpoint problems before they affect service, make informed rack capacity decisions, and take steps towards green computing. Our Dominion PX solution can help decrease data center expenses and improve the bottom line."

Raritan’s PDU also sets a new standard in security. It is said to be the first PDU to provide 256-bit AES encryption at the hardware level. Also standard are strong password support, outlet-level permissions, per outlet Access Control Lists, group-level permissions and a built-in firewall. The Dominion PX operates securely in a standalone mode, and can integrate to external authentication and authorization services.

The Dominion PX PDU starts at US$649.00, and is currently available in 16 models that range from eight to 20 outlets.