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Larry Polen and Brian Crabtree from 88th Civil Engineer Division electric shop relocate power tails during power outage to replace aging equipment.
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Data center consolidation reaches major milestone

Posted 11/17/2011   Updated 11/17/2011 Email story   Print story

    


by Barbara T. Cerny
88th Communications Group


11/17/2011 - WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, Ohio -- The lights were out and e-mail was down, but few people noticed these symptoms as a major power upgrade supporting Wright-Patt's network infrastructure occurred last week.
 
The quiet operation was the result of months of delicate planning between the 88th Civil Engineer Directorate, the 88th Communications Group, the Defense Information Systems Agency, and the 83rd Network Operations Squadron Detachment 3. The "clandestine" effort involved upgrading power panels, power distribution units, and replaced aging circuits and breakers to ensure Wright-Patt is ready to support information technology needs well into the future. A team of dozens of communications group, civil engineers, and Det 3 personnel worked over a 30 hour period to "gracefully" shut down systems, perform any maintenance on the equipment and then bring these systems back on-line in an orderly fashion in conjunction with the power shut down to accomplish this vital work.

The power upgrade was a necessary step to prepareWright-Patt for the planned Area Processing Center expected to be unveiled in mid-2012. The APC illustrates how regional data centers across the country can be consolidated, as was the intent behind the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative, an effort to reduce cost and environmental impact of data centers, while simultaneously increasing their security posture.

"The APC will produce cost savings not only through a reduction in data centers," said Maj. Mark Reith, commander of 83 NOS Det 3, "but also through technology refresh using the latest multi-core processors and virtualization."

Virtualization is a technique for reducing multiple computing environments to a smaller hardware footprint.

Gen. Donald Hoffman, AFMC commander, took a personal interest and toured the facilities before the power upgrades took place.  

"WPAFB provides vital cyber capabilities to not only the base with the Ohio Regional Data Center, but also across AFMC and to the AF as a whole," said Col. Rob Lyman, commander of the 88th Communication Group.

WPAFB hosts not only e-mail, instant messaging, and Enterprise Information Management for all of AFMC but also hosts an Air Force Gateway, which serves as a connection to the Global Information Grid for many bases around the Midwest and East Coast, and Air Force enterprise systems such as AF Equipment Management System and AF Knowledge Now.

"This was a concerted team effort and flawless execution," said Major Reith, "that brought the best of CE, the Comm Group, DISA and the Det 3 crew together to accomplish something that will affect the Air Force for a decade or more as we bring twenty-first century capabilities to WPAFB."



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