May 3, 2011 – Cisco Systems pulled back the curtain on its new containerized data centers, the technology services and solutions provider’s first foray into portable data hubs.

The Cisco Containerized Data Center is a modular data center that runs on the company’s Data Center Business Advantage framework for fabric-based infrastructure not reliant on a proprietary IT platform, according to a Cisco news release. The centers are managed with Cisco Data Center Operations 360, a real-time monitoring and environmental analytics planning and deployment support system. The portable centers are stored in weatherized freight containers. Cisco estimates deployment at around 12 weeks.

In a news release, Cisco said the new data centers are designed specifically for mobile rapid deployment, disaster recovery and a reduction in data center energy output and spending.

Portable data center use has increased in the last two years as enterprises look to shrink their brick-and-mortar data center dedications and move more information storage to virtualized servers, according to Gartner forecasts. In the last six months, IBM, HP, Dell and Toshiba, respectively, have all poured millions into modular data center production.

Cisco also pointed to the growing energy-efficient data center technology market, which Pike Research expects to take up 28 percent of the overall $150 billion data center infrastructure market in the next five years.

Jason Schafer, senior data center analyst with Tier1 Research, said the announcement is part of a “transformation” in industry data center offerings.

“[Data centers] need to become more energy efficient and at the same time faster to deploy in order to keep pace with IT organizations’ customers’ demands and growth,” Schafer said. “These IT organizations are under increasing pressure to find ways to quickly and affordably deploy reliable, resilient data center environments in multiple locations.”

For a video explanation on Cisco’s portable data center from global government solutions group vice president Brad Boston, click here.

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