Obsolete Repurpose

How to Repurpose an Old On-Premises Data Center

There comes a time in the life of every data center when its owner faces a stark choice: update, repurpose, or unload the facility. In 2019, Gartner predicted that by 2025, 80% of enterprises will shut down their traditional data centers. Today, the trend shows no sign of slowing down. A “cloud-first” mentality has gripped…

There comes a point in every data center’s life when the owner must make a decision: update, repurpose or unload it. In 2019, Gartner
It was predicted that enterprises would shut down their traditional data centres . by The trend is not slowing down today.

The “cloud-first” mentality is sweeping the IT industry today. Steven Carlini, vice President of innovation and data centre at Schneider Electric, says that one consequence has been the vacating of physical data center space. “Similarly to the extermination of office space by desk workers because of the pandemic,” he says. This trend has prompted a growing number enterprises to repurpose old and functionally inefficient properties. Carlini explains that adaptive reuse is a term in real estate.

When repurposing a data center, the first thing to do is assess the facility and its assets. James Obukhovsky is associate director of cloud services at Netrix IT services and infrastructure consultancy. He says that it is important to understand the current lifecycle of your hardware, power, cooling, security, and other factors before making any changes.

Multiple Options

In most cases, management views enterprise-owned data centres as cost centers. Carlini states that any conversion leading to income-generating functions will be welcomed by the upper management. “For example, if a retailer allocates valuable space for IT equipment, it can be used to generate income or add storage space.” Another option is to lease or sell the data center to an organization that could use it as a warehouse, distribution, or other facility.

Many data centers have high ceilings and open spaces. They also offer high power and cooling capacities. These attributes may be appealing to potential buyers and lessees. For example, enterprises searching for a testing or laboratory facility. Carlini suggests that manufacturers who specialize in certain types of industrial processing such as water desalinization and electrolysis for hydrogen production could also be considered.

Obukhovsky points out that companies also have the option to transform an old data center into a disaster-recovery facility. He recommends that you look at your existing hardware and other resources in order to determine what can be used. “Building a multi-phased resilient approach will allow you to centrally manage and automate your old and new data centers .”


If you wish to repurpose your data center for disaster recovery purposes, you must first wipe all digital files… so hackers can’t trace back them, says Ryan Fyfe (COO of Workpuls), a workforce analytics software company. Zero-knowledge encryption is the best method to accomplish this. It breaks down clean data into codes that cannot be read .”


Equipment Repurposing

Once a data center has been deco

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