Industry specialists in IT environmental and power monitoring for disaster recovery

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Industry specialists in IT environmental and power monitoring for data centres

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Industry specialists in IT environmental and power monitoring for server rooms

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Industry specialists in IT environmental and power monitoring for comms rooms

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Industry specialists in IT environmental and power monitoring for facilities management

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Prevention is better than cure

OMNIWATCH

Introduction

Spook has specialised in providing industry leading solutions for server room environmental and power monitoring for nearly two decades.

Spook’s flagship service called OmniWatch is designed to alert users in real-time to key changes to the climate and power consumption of a server room via email, 2-way SMS and UK call centre. Secure real-time dashboards provide access to an enterprise centric solution via any internet enabled device.

OmniWatch won the 'Most Innovative Solution' at the industry leading CIR Business Continuity Awards in London.

All software development is in-house and importantly much of the new functionality is driven by customer requests. As a result OmniWatch remains relevant and functionally rich.

OmniWatch

Award Winning Server Room Monitoring

Example OmniWatch dashboards

Overview
Environmental
PDU
UPS
DCIM
Green IT
RedMantis
Overview
  • Home
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Locations
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OMNIWATCH
London
Server Room
London - Server Room
Environmental
London - Server Room
PDU
London - Server Room
UPS
London - Server Room
DCIM
London - Server Room
Green IT

Budgeting for monitoring

Budgeting for monitoring has never been easier or more affordable. The total cost of ownership (TCO) from Spook is simply an annual monitoring fee. There are no hidden charges.

Spook is able to monitor any type of monitoring equipment and sensors, this is ideal for customers that have previously bought monitoring hardware and do not want to write off the substantial investment they have previously made.

For organisations that have never bought monitoring hardware before and require a total solution Spook will provide the most relevant hardware and sensors and if required co-ordinate the on-site installation too.

Spook is a Value Added Reseller (VAR) for many industry leading manufacturers of climate monitors & sensors, intelligent power distribution units (PDU’s) and various 3rd party equipment.

This means Spook are not tied to a single hardware manufacturer. As a result any recommended investment is based on truly delivering the best method to monitor matters.

Vendor neutral

Spook software is developed in-house therefore adding new vendors for monitoring is easy. Spook’s OmniWatch service is compatible with equipment from over fifty manufacturers and counting.

This approach not only lets customers monitor both new and legacy equipment side by side, it also provides reassurance that that they are investing in a forward-looking future-proof solution.

Non-network attached equipment such as gas suppressant and fire alarm systems can also be monitored by utilising Volt Free Contacts (VFC’s) which are usually available on third party devices.

Support devices logos

Protocol inclusive

Spook is the only monitoring service provider that includes multiple equipment protocols such as SNMP, JSON, XML, Modbus and BACnet all under one easy to use service.

Readings from the various protocols are seamlessly collected to present a joined up, holistic real-time dashboard. By easily comparing readings from multiple protocols takes away the headache of customers having to learn 'different operating languages' in order to gain a global interface.

Monitoring Technology

Wired and Wireless technology

Monitoring hardware has traditionally been physically connected to the Local Area Network (LAN). Its sensors are typically connected back to the monitoring device via interconnecting sensor cables. This involves considerable time and effort in labour costs during the installation and causes the monitoring footprint to be static for the duration of its life.

Even though the market for LAN technology remains popular there is a growing trend to adopt wireless sensor technology.

By investing in wireless technology the installation is a fraction of the time and the sensors can easily be repositioned as the landscape of the server room changes over time.

The limiting factor for wireless sensors has traditionally been their limited battery life. However battery technology has evolved at a great pace and now wireless sensors can expect to have a battery life of up to 10 years.

Spook includes monitoring a wireless sensors signal strength and battery status. This means the battery replacement procedure is achieved in an informed and simple way.

Check out our comparison of wired vs wireless sensors.

Ethernet and cellular technology

Ethernet technology has been around for decades and has a well proven pedigree. However with the fairly recent development of cellular router technology means monitoring can be independent of the corporate LAN & WAN (Wide Area Network).

Not only that, but cellular technology has more resilience than traditional ethernet solutions as the development of roaming data SIM cards means the strongest signal service provider is selected in a region every day.

In the unlikely event a mobile network provider has an outage, the next service provider with the strongest signal is selected.

Spook partners with a robust cellular router manufacturer that has over 80 mobile service providers available including EE, Vodafone, O2 and Three UK.

Check out how cellular routers are fast becoming a popular alternative to ethernet gateways.

Measure, analyse, improve and control

OmniWatch streamlines monitoring tasks to deliver an outstanding end user experience. Users are able to continually “Measure, Analyse, Improve and Control” which is key to maximising business uptime and ensuring departmental Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) are measured and met.

Collected sensor readings are a valuable asset. Unlike ‘data loggers’ on various monitoring hardware devices whereby the oldest data is deleted while new values are added; OmniWatch readings are held in perpetuity. Spook understands that importance of providing longer trend data periods to study in order for a more accurate measurement to be applied.

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OmniWatch’s ‘On Demand Report’ function is readily available for customers to easily create trend data analysis reports to study for capacity planning, preventative maintenance programs and auditing purposes.

OmniWatch even auto-generates weekly and monthly reports and sends these to end users via email for handy review. Anything more complicated can be created via the intuitive search engine within the ‘On Demand Report’ function.

In short Spook makes interpreting data meaningful, intuitive and incredibly easy to access.

Why monitoring is important

The majority of server rooms monitored by Spook are unsupervised for approximately 14 hours over night during the business week and for over 60 hours from close of play on Friday through to Monday morning.

Overall this means that critical IT equipment is in a lights out state for over 70% of the time.

Clearly this increases even more during extended holiday periods such as Bank Holidays, Easter and the festive period.

Upcoming bank holidays in England and Wales

2019

1 JanuaryTuesdayNew Year's Day
19 AprilFridayGood Friday
22 AprilMondayEaster Monday
6 MayMondayEarly May bank holiday
27 MayMondaySpring bank holiday
26 AugustMondaySummer bank holiday
25 DecemberWednesdayChristmas Day
26 DecemberThursdayBoxing Day

2020

1 JanuaryWednesdayNew Year’s Day
10 AprilFridayGood Friday
13 AprilMondayEaster Monday
4 MayMondayEarly May bank holiday
25 MayMondaySpring bank holiday
31 AugustMondaySummer bank holiday
25 DecemberFridayChristmas Day
28 DecemberMondayBoxing Day (substitute day)

Upcoming bank holidays in Scotland

2019

1 JanuaryTuesdayNew Year's Day
2 JanuaryWednesday2nd January
19 AprilFridayGood Friday
6 MayMondayEarly May bank holiday
27 MayMondaySpring bank holiday
5 AugustMondaySummer bank holiday
2 DecemberMondaySt Andrew’s Day (substitute day)
25 DecemberWednesdayChristmas Day
26 DecemberThursdayBoxing Day

2020

1 JanuaryWednesdayNew Year’s Day
2 JanuaryThursday2nd January
10 AprilFridayGood Friday
4 MayMondayEarly May bank holiday
25 MayMondaySpring bank holiday
3 AugustMondaySummer bank holiday
30 NovemberMondaySt Andrew’s Day
25 DecemberFridayChristmas Day
28 DecemberMondayBoxing Day (substitute day)

Upcoming bank holidays in Northern Ireland

2019

1 JanuaryTuesdayNew Year's Day
18 MarchMondaySt Patrick's Day (substitute day)
19 AprilFridayGood Friday
22 AprilMondayEaster Monday
6 MayMondayEarly May bank holiday
27 MayMondaySpring bank holiday
12 JulyFridayBattle of the Boyne (Orangemen’s Day)
26 AugustMondaySummer bank holiday
25 DecemberWednesdayChristmas Day
26 DecemberThursdayBoxing Day

2020

1 JanuaryWednesdayNew Year’s Day
17 MarchTuesdaySt Patrick’s Day
10 AprilFridayGood Friday
13 AprilMondayEaster Monday
4 MayMondayEarly May bank holiday
25 MayMondaySpring bank holiday
13 JulyMondayBattle of the Boyne (Orangemen’s Day) (substitute day)
31 AugustMondaySummer bank holiday
25 DecemberFridayChristmas Day
28 DecemberMondayBoxing Day (substitute day)

Lights out

In Spook’s experience most IT Department staff are located some distance from the server room, often in a different part of the business, or sometimes in a different part of the country or world. Physical visits to the server rooms are therefore rare and normally confined to when onsite work is actually required.

This is known as running a ‘lights out’ operation which is increasingly common; however it can result in IT staff not being 100% up to date on the the current environmental state of the server room.

By monitoring the server room environment, IT managers and their teams can ensure they are immediately aware of key changes as and when they occur, giving them that valuable ‘early warning’ time to take remedial action before the incident impacts IT uptime.

Once alerted, even the simplest of actions, such as opening doors and windows or installing temporary fans to help with air flow should air conditioning units fail can often be an adequate first step in helping to avert business downtime.

Departmental and regional access

Spook's customers range from single room installations to multiple locations across national/international borders.

When multi-territory monitoring is required sometimes a regional IT manager may only need to know what is happening in their district. Whereas the global IT department may need an enterprise centric view across all regions and territories.

Even at local level there may be a need for different departments to be responsible for their own monitoring footprint. For example, water ingress monitoring may be the remit of the facilities department whereas the temperature of an IT room or server rack may be the responsibility of the IT department.

OmniWatch provides multiple dashboard portals to cater for this whilst ensuring management has a global view of everything.

Fully managed or co-managed

Spook customers range from businesses that have already installed environmental hardware and network devices to organisations that are considering monitoring for the first time.

Either way Spook can help.