Cbeyond’s vision to take the “green” initiative to the
next level is a reality with Q-Series and RapidRun®
Businesses are often confronted with the need to be green or to reduce their carbon footprint. The
amount of power required to operate data centers is in direct conflict with an organization’s green
initiatives. A relatively new option, cloud computing, offers an eco-friendly solution for businesses.
Cbeyond, a telecommunications company that also focuses on cloud computing, has taken green
to the next level. Hosting premium, global services that leverage Microsoft Windows® technologies
for customers, Cbeyond is assisting its business clients with their conservation efforts. Moreover,
they’ve brought the green initiative in-house and as a result, are leaving a smaller footprint within
their own data center.
Faced with designing and installing its own data center, Cbeyond’s Director of Data Center
Operations, Donnie Cunningham, had a unique vision for the construction. He aspired to fit industry
standards while creating an energy efficient data center. Most data centers require computer room
air conditioning (CRAC) units and raised floors with under floor cable and power management;
however, Cunningham wanted to go a different direction. He worked extensively with Dell™ engineers
to determine the optimal temperature range for Dell servers. He then created an environment with
zoned cooling, hot aisle/cold aisle enforcement and top-of-rack cabling. To regulate heat and
humidity, compressors are present but only operate when a pre-determined temperature or moisture
level is reached, thus reducing the power consumed by the data center.
Protecting and monitoring the data center to ensure compliance with security practices, data backups
and customer service is a priority for Cbeyond. A support center was created to fulfill this need. In a
room lined with computers for the support team, vital data is projected onto multiple screens. These
screens showcase video feeds from the data center, images from security cameras surrounding the
facility, customer service levels, monitoring of the phone system and outside weather updates, as
well as internal data center temperatures.
With a data center that cannot afford to have downtime and a support center that must remain
connected, Cbeyond enlisted C2G to provide the connectivity needs throughout the entire facility.
“We had a good feeling about it since we’ve been dealing with C2G for years,” states Cunningham.
In the support center, Cbeyond utilizes RapidRun, a modular cabling system, for a time-saving, pre-
terminated solution. RapidRun connects the sources to the projectors to display pertinent data for the
support team to view. RapidRun is also utilized in Cbeyond’s teleconferencing system and connects
every monitor throughout the office. “Every one of our offices that have monitors on the wall are all
fed with RapidRun.”
The heart of the operation, the data center, also uses C2G products. Cunningham needed to run
cabling from a carrier-neutral location to an actual end-of-row within the data center. With the help
of C2G, he selected Q-Series rack mount fiber optic enclosures, pre-loaded modules and MTP fiber
cables. “Hook it up and it’s done. We’ve not had any issues with Q-Series and I’ve had good turn
around,” said Cunningham about the products.
Cbeyond protects against service interruptions through a redundant system. With A/B or 2N
redundancy, the architecture offers two completely separate systems, with no single points of failure.
Service stoppages would be detrimental to Cbeyond; therefore, it takes precautionary measures to
ensure continuous quality service. Cunningham is confident in C2G Q-Series and fiber to deliver
connectivity excellence that is up-to-par with its high standards. “I don’t believe there is anything that
I’ve seen that needs to change on the Q-Series.”
The cabling in the data center is not composed of fiber alone. Certain co-location customers, those
that rent out a server or servers within the data center, still desire copper. To meet this need,
Cunningham worked with C2G to design custom Cat6 multi-end cable bundles. “I sent a link
showing exactly what I was looking for and a few weeks later it was at my door.” These custom
copper packages contain twelve Cat6 cables bundled together. If, for some reason, a cable goes
bad, Cunningham can move on to the next cable. “It’s a one-time pull”—which equates to time and
With two or three more phases left until completion, Cunningham intends to stick with C2G to
upscale to 10GB to meet demands for greater bandwidth requirements. He recommends C2G
products to everyone. He said, “We’ve had really good luck with them—I’ve never had an issue,
never had to send anything back.”
C2G is a division of Lastar, Inc., a leader in computer, datacom and audio/video connectivity
solutions since 1984. The company delivers connectivity products renowned for superior quality,
value and innovation and are backed by their uncompromising commitment to customer service. For
more information regarding C2G, visit http://www.c2g.com/.