Why the US Government has so many data centers

Lee ler762 at gmail.com
Mon Mar 14 16:44:03 UTC 2016

On 3/14/16, Sean Donelan wrote:
> On Mon, 14 Mar 2016, Lee wrote:
>> I doubt anyone really believes that having a server in the room makes
>> it a data center.  But if you're the Federal CIO pushing the cloud
>> first policy, this seems like a great bureaucratic maneuver to get the
>> decision making away from the techies that like redundant servers in
>> multiple locations, their managers who's job rating depends on
>> providing reliable services and even the agency CIOs.  Check the
>> reporting section of the memo where it says "each agency head shall
>> annually publish a Data Center Consolidation and Optimization
>> Strategic Plan".   I dunno, but I'm guessing agency heads are
>> political appointees that aren't going to spend much, if any, time
>> listening to techies whine about how important their servers are & why
>> they can't be consolidated, virtualized or outsourced.
> If your goal is to consolidate servers, call it a server consolidation
> initiative.

He did, didn't he?  "... consolidate inefficient infrastructure,
optimize existing facilities, achieve cost savings, and transition to
more efficient infrastructure".   But other than the ability to
embarrass people[1] - ie. make the reports public, how much actual
ability to effect change does he really have?

> You are correct political appointees won't understand why techies are
> perplexed by calling everything a data center.  Just remember that
> when you read the stories in the Washington Post about how many
> data centers the government has...
> http://www.datacenterdynamics.com/design-build/us-government-finds-2000-more-data-centers/95243.fullarticle
> New count of government facilities, and it looks like consolidation is going
> backwards

Yes, *sigh*, another what kind of people _do_ we have running the govt
story.  Altho, looking on the bright side, it could have been much
worse than a final summing up of "With the current closing having been
reported to have saved over $2.5 billion it is clear that inroads are
being made, but ... one has to wonder exactly how effective the
initiative will be at achieving a more effective and efficient use of
government monies in providing technology services."

Best Regards,

[1] http://archive.fortune.com/2011/07/13/news/companies/vivek_kundra_leadership.fortune/index.htm

For example, one of the first things I did was take the picture of
every CIO in the federal government. We set up an IT dashboard online,
and I put their pictures right next to the IT projects they were
responsible for. You could see on this IT dashboard whether that
project was on schedule or not. The President actually looked at the
IT dashboard, so we took a picture of that and put it online. Moments
later, I started getting many phone calls from CIOs who said, "For the
first time, my cabinet secretary is asking me why this project is red
or green or yellow." One agency ended up halting 45 IT projects
immediately. It was just the act of shining light and making sure you
focus on execution, not only policy.

More information about the NANOG mailing list