The University of Arizona

News

Friday, August 27, 2010 - 2:11pm

The Linux open-source operating system is popular around campus, and is free to download. Keeping it up, however, takes some specialized knowledge. Red Hat focuses on Linux for enterprise-scale applications, and provides added-value services like software updates, technical support, and security patches.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010 - 12:00pm
How did UITS save over half a million dollars, and reduce server room electrical needs by over a third? This is what IT professionals all over the country want to know, making UITS Senior Director Derek Masseth a very popular guy.
 
Last year, UITS partnered with Cisco Systems in a cutting-edge project to improve the University’s technological infrastructure. In the spring of 2009, UITS and Cisco began to transition to Fiber Chanel over Ethernet (FCoE) technology through Nexus Unified Fabric. The concept of Nexus FCoE is relatively simple: it takes the fiber channel and Ethernet, which formerly were separate cabling, and combines them into one.  In essence, this partnership improved the UA data center management by combining the fiber channel technology into a 10Gb Ethernet link. By using the existing storage area and Ethernet networks, Nexus FCoE technology not only increased server connectivity but it also reduced cabling and the server box count.
 
While the greater University community might not notice the improvements that this partnership provided, this project has helped the University by reducing costs. Placed into production last fall, Nexus has realized a cost savings of $600,000, which comes primarily from reducing the number of cables from eight or twelve per server to four cables per server. The photos below show what the cabling in the data center looked like before and after the Nexus partnership.
 
 
Before, left; after, right.
Photos by Gary Mackender, OIA
Nexus reduces cable congestion
Wednesday, August 4, 2010 - 11:27am
During an economic downturn, everyone is looking for a way to get more and pay less. While people and companies have been able to crunch small savings here and there, cutting a six-figure bill in half while getting more service is a rare occurrence. But that is exactly the type of change UITS is working on right now.
 
UITS is currently negotiating a contract with CENIC (Corporation for Education Network Initiative in California) that would provide increased Internet connectivity and major cost reduction. This new contract would increase our campus’s connectivity to the high-speed research network—important for faculty research and Internet reliability—while reducing costs substantially.