Difference between Basic and Intelligent Power Distribution Unit

Basic and Intelligent PDUs

Understanding data center power distribution units can be rather difficult for beginners and so, before we start discussing the main concept, we’ll explain what exactly the elements are all about. A rack power distribution unit (PDUs) is a device used in IT infrastructures for disseminating power to server and other hardware stored within the facility. The term is further categorized to Basic PDUs and Intelligent PDUs. Let’s discuss the concept in detail.

Basic Vs. Intelligent Power Distribution Unit

Basic PDUs are standard power supply units that distribute power between data center equipment. It matches the features of a UPS system by delivering more power point that usually does not come along with UPS, which further move over to a single high-amperage UPS electrical port to many low-amperage PDU ports. PDUs are a convenient, cost-effective and space-efficient technique to cater power among different and range of rack loads. However, there are certain hitches of basic PDUs, one of it is that it does not support remote monitoring and access control.

Intelligent PDUs is an advanced version of the standard unit that offers a wide range of features that helps data center in changing its operational method and intensify efficiency, minimize capital expenditure, promote availability, and effectively manage internal elements. Here are some of the sub-categories of Intellingent PDUs –

  • Metered PDUs

  • Remotely monitored PDUs

  • Switched PDUs

  • Automatic Transfer Switch

  • Hot-Swap PDU

  • Dual Circuit PDU

All of these features together describes the difference between an intelligent Power Distribution Unit and a standard unit. But what makes the smart rack less favored is that many organizations believe that it is similar to the standard rack PDU. In terms of the device’s physical and basic aspects, users may not be able to find out the differences. However, intelligent rack excels when it comes to performance. Another reason is price factor that makes data centers go for the basic modules.

With this due diligence, data centers are finding it difficult to adopt the modern, smart racks and thus, go for the basic ones. We can say that this is a missed opportunity to enhance the way data centers operate. Data center service providers need to go beyond the traditional approach and accept the intelligent power units that can provide them with number of benefits.