Data Center Reports

Terry Slattery
Principal Architect

I’ve been looking at a number of different reports that would be useful to network administrators.  One that came up in talking with some people about data centers is a  Power and Heating Report.  A number of data centers have reached power and heat loading limits, even though there is physical space left.  The use of Power over Ethernet has exacerbated the problem because switches need to supply power to phones and other devices.  (Yes, a switch may be in a wiring closet, which I think of as an extension of the data center and often doesn’t have the proper cooling infrastructure.)

It seems that a pretty good estimate of power and heat loading could be made by simply knowing which devices are in the facility.  A network audit can identify all devices in the network and by knowing which subnets are within the facility, it should be relatively easy to determine which devices are located there.  In NetMRI, I would do this by creating a device group using the set of CIDR blocks that match the subnets in the facility.  Even if this isn’t exactly accurate, a good estimate is much better than guessing or having to do a periodic manual audit.

Correlate the estimate with the ambient temperature measured by the temperature probes in a set of network devices and you have a pretty good way to watch for changes and limits in populating your data center.  It would be really cool to collect data from a number of data centers and be able to forecast trends in new data centers based on the collected data.

If you do periodic audits of your power and heat load, let me know.  Examples of useful reports, or reports that aren’t useful if you can explain how they’re not useful, would be appreciated.  We’ll take your feedback and incorporate it into NetMRI.



Re-posted with Permission 

NetCraftsmen would like to acknowledge Infoblox for their permission to re-post this article which originally appeared in the Applied Infrastructure blog under


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Nick Kelly

Cybersecurity Engineer, Cisco

Nick has over 20 years of experience in Security Operations and Security Sales. He is an avid student of cybersecurity and regularly engages with the Infosec community at events like BSides, RVASec, Derbycon and more. The son of an FBI forensics director, Nick holds a B.S. in Criminal Justice and is one of Cisco’s Fire Jumper Elite members. When he’s not working, he writes cyberpunk and punches aliens on his Playstation.


Virgilio “BONG” dela Cruz Jr.

CCDP, CCNA V, CCNP, Cisco IPS Express Security for AM/EE
Field Solutions Architect, Tech Data

Virgilio “Bong” has sixteen years of professional experience in IT industry from academe, technical and customer support, pre-sales, post sales, project management, training and enablement. He has worked in Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC) as a member of the WAN and LAN Switching team. Bong now works for Tech Data as the Field Solutions Architect with a focus on Cisco Security and holds a few Cisco certifications including Fire Jumper Elite.


John Cavanaugh

CCIE #1066, CCDE #20070002, CCAr
Chief Technology Officer, Practice Lead Security Services, NetCraftsmen

John is our CTO and the practice lead for a talented team of consultants focused on designing and delivering scalable and secure infrastructure solutions to customers across multiple industry verticals and technologies. Previously he has held several positions including Executive Director/Chief Architect for Global Network Services at JPMorgan Chase. In that capacity, he led a team managing network architecture and services.  Prior to his role at JPMorgan Chase, John was a Distinguished Engineer at Cisco working across a number of verticals including Higher Education, Finance, Retail, Government, and Health Care.

He is an expert in working with groups to identify business needs, and align technology strategies to enable business strategies, building in agility and scalability to allow for future changes. John is experienced in the architecture and design of highly available, secure, network infrastructure and data centers, and has worked on projects worldwide. He has worked in both the business and regulatory environments for the design and deployment of complex IT infrastructures.