Glossary

A

Artificial Intelligence
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the ability of a digital computer or computer controlled robot to perform tasks commonly associated with intelligent beings.
All In Power
Power model where client is charged a fixed, $ per KW rate that covers the cost of all power and space contracted.
Autonomous System Number (ASN)
An autonomous system number (ASN) is a unique numeric identifier for a network that is globally available and the network to exchange BGP (Border Gateway Protocol) routing information with other networks. Autonomous systems form the basis of the global internet.

B

Backup & Recovery
The process of copying and saving data at regular intervals so it can be restored or recreated later in the event of a system failure, data deletion or corruption.
Bandwidth
Bandwidth describes the maximum data transfer rate of a network or Internet connection. It measures how much data can be sent over a specific connection in a given amount of time.
Business Continuity
Business continuity is the advance planning and preparation undertaken to ensure that an organization will have the capability to operate its critical business functions during emergency events. Events can include natural disasters, a business crisis, pandemic, workplace violence, or any event that results in a disruption of your business operation. Business continuity is an organization's ability to maintain essential functions during and after a disaster has occurred.
Biometric Scanner
A biometric scanner is a device for security identification and authentication. Such devices use automated methods of verifying or recognizing the identity of a living person based on a physiological or behavioral characteristic. These characteristics include fingerprints, facial images, iris, and voice recognition.
Brownfield
Brownfield is the term used to describe development of a piece of property from an already existing property.
Building Management System (BMS)
A building management system (BMS) is an electronic network used to monitor and control a building’s electrical and mechanical services, including heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), and lighting. A BMS can incorporate wider building services such as security, access control, elevator and safety systems.
Build-To-Suit
A purpose-built data center facility that is designed and developed with customer input to meet specific requirements for deployment size, power, security and more.

C

Cabinet
A cabinet is similar to a server rack, except that it is typically enclosed by doors at the front and rear of the rack. A server rack offers additional security due to its ability to be locked.
Cage
Fully enclosed wire cage with a locking door, that only the customer and other designated parties have access to. Cages provide additional physical security and have many levels of customization available to meet customer needs.
CapEx
Capital expenditures (CapEx) are funds used by a company to acquire, upgrade, and maintain physical assets such as property, buildings, technology, or equipment.
Carbon Disclosure Project
The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) is an international, not-for-profit organization providing the only global system for companies and cities to measure, disclose, manage and share vital environmental information. CDP harnesses the power of market forces to collect information from companies on their greenhouse gas emissions and assessment of climate change and water risk and opportunity.
Carrier Hotel
Also known as a colocation center, a carrier hotel is a secure physical site or building where data communications networks converge and are interconnected. It is common for numerous service providers to share facilities of a single carrier hotel. This minimizes overhead and optimizes communications efficiency for all participants as long as the underlying infrastructure is sufficient to handle all the data at times of peak demand.
Circuit Based Power
Circuit-based power is a power model where the client pays a fixed price per circuit, regardless of power usage.
Cloud On-Ramp
A connection service within a data center that provides direct connectivity to a cloud provider.
Cold Aisle
A layout design for server racks in which the rack fronts and server cold air intakes typically face a cooling system.
Colocation
Colocation, also known as "colo" is the practice of housing privately owned servers and networking equipment in a third party data center. Rather than house servers within a section of one's own infrastructure, colocation allows companies to rent out space in a colocation center, with access to redundant power and cooling infrastructure.
Compliance
Data center compliance is part of a formal procedure by which an accredited or authorized 3rd party audits the facility’s practices are in accordance with the established requirements or standards for the regulation in question. Upon completion, a data center receives a certificate or attestation that proves its compliance with legal requirements. Most data centers are compliant with numerous standards, and customers should verify their needs during the deal process.
Computer Room Air Conditioner (CRAC)
A computer room air conditioning (CRAC) unit is a device that monitors and maintains the temperature, air distribution and humidity in a network room or data center.
Computer Room Air Handler (CRAH)
A computer room air handler (CRAH) uses fans and chilled water coils to remove heat from the data center.
Connectivity
The capacity for the interconnection of platforms, systems, and applications.
Construction in Progress
A long-term asset account in which the costs of constructing long-term assets are recorded.  The costs of a constructed asset are accumulated in CIP until the asset is placed into service.  Deprecation begins after the asset has been placed into service.
Containment
A strategy and approach to separate cold supply air from hot exhaust air to reduce energy consumption and improve overall equipment performance and efficiency.
Cooling Uplift
Cooling uplift accounts for utilities - water, sewer, natural gas, etc. - added to the PUE.  This makes up the cooling uplift, which is not interchangeable with PUE.
Cross Connect
A physical cable connecting one point in the data center to another.

D

Dark Fiber
Dark fiber is unused optical fiber that has been laid but is not currently being used in fiber-optic communications. Because fiber-optic cable transmits information in the form of light pulses, a "dark" cable refers to one through which light pulses are not being transmitted.
Data Center
A building that houses a large group of networked computer servers used by organizations for the remote storage, processing, analytics, and distribution of large amounts of data.
Data Center Alley
Based in Loundon County, data center alley is in Ashburn, Virginia. With an unparalleled amount of data centers and fiber infrastructure, reasonable energy costs, and tax incentives, Ashburn is the ideal place for data center operations across the globe. Known as "the home of the cloud."
Data Hall
The secure area of the data center that houses the technical infrastructure. Typically filled with server cabinets of various sizes and a cooling system.
DCIM
DCIM (Data Center Infrastructural Management) is the convergence of IT and buildings facilities within an organization. The goal of a DCIM initiative is to provide administrators with a holistic view of a data center's performance so that energy, equipment and floor space are used as efficiently as possible.
Disaster Recovery
The process of resuming normal operations following a disaster by regaining access to data, hardware, software, networking equipment, power and connectivity. 

E

Edge Data Center
Smaller facilities located close to the populations they serve that deliver cloud computing resources and cached content to end users. They typically connect to a larger central data center or multiple data centers. By processing data and services as close to the end user as possible, edge computing allows organizations to reduce latency, improve the customer experience, and cut costs. 
EnergyStar Certification
The trusted, government-backed symbol for energy efficiency helping us all save money and protect the environment through energy-efficient products and practices.
EPMS
An electrical power management system (EPMS) is an electronic system that provides detailed information about power flow, quality and consumption within a defined system.
ESG
Environmental, Social and Governance. ESG is an increasingly popular way for investors to evaluate companies that they are interested investing in. Environmental criteria may include a company’s energy use, waste, pollution, natural resource conservation, and treatment of animals. The criteria can also be used in evaluating any environmental risks a company might face and how the company is managing those risks.
E-Waste
E-waste is any refuse created by discarded electronic devices and components as well as substances involved in their manufacture or use. The disposal of electronics is a growing problem because electronic equipment frequently contains hazardous substances.

F

FLAP Market
A market in Europe (Frankfurt, London, Amsterdam, Paris) which are considered Tier 1 locations for data centers in Europe and have a high concentration of data center investments. 

G

Green Data Center
A green data center is a facility in which the mechanical, lighting, electrical and computer systems are designed for maximum energy efficiency and minimum environmental impact. The construction and operation of a green data center includes advanced technologies and strategies. 
Greenfield
Greefield development refers to the construction of a facility where previously there was none. This type of development is often beneficial because a facility can be designed and purpose-built for the needs of the operator, in this case as a data center and interconnection hub.
GRESB
GRESB (Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark) is the environmental, social and governance (ESG) benchmark for real assets. Working in collaboration with the industry, GRESB defines the global standard for sustainability performance in real assets, providing standardized and validated ESG data to the capital markets.
GRI (Global Reporting Initiative)
The GRI (Global Reporting Initiative) is a nonprofit, independent organization that has pioneered sustainability reporting. GRI helps businesses and governments worldwide understand and communicate their impact on critical sustainability issues such as climate change, human rights, governance and social well-being. This enables real action to create social, environmental and economic benefits for everyone. The GRI Sustainability Reporting Standards are developed with true multi-stakeholder contributions and rooted in the public interest. 

H

High Density
A situation in which power density (watts per square foot) exceeds the standard design parameters of a data center. The value associated with high density will vary from data center to data center.
Hot Aisle
A layout design for server racks in which the server exhausts are aligned along an aisle to face return air ducts.
HVAC
Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning (HVAC) is the central air conditioning system used to regulate temperature and humidity indoors while optimizing conditions and efficiency.
Hybrid Colocation
Combining public and private clouds together, allowing for workloads to be processed on public cloud infrastructure, while others are run in private clouds. 
Hybrid IT
Hybrid IT systems combine in-house data centers with private and/or public clouds. Companies that run applications in multiple environments need to ensure that their various systems are able to work together efficiently. This is the process of hybrid IT management.
Hyperscale
Hyperscale computing refers to the facilities and provisioning required in distributed computing environments to efficiently scale from a few servers to thousands of servers. Hyperscale computing is usually used in environments such as big data and cloud computing.  

I

Interconnection
A physical or logical connection between two electronic devices or networks.
Internet Exchange (IX)
An Internet exchange point (IX or IXP) is the physical infrastructure through which Internet service providers (ISPs) and content delivery networks (CDNs) exchange Internet traffic between their networks (autonomous systems).
IP Transit
IP Transit is a form of interconnection in which an ISP or customer purchases an Internet bandwidth connectivity service offering access to every publicly reachable destination on the Internet, commonly referred to as "full transit." An Internet Transit Provider is an ISP that provides transit to customers as a paid transport service.
Internet Service Provider (ISP)
An Internet Service Provider (ISP) is a company that offers access to the Internet, usually for a monthly fee.

K

Kilowatts (KW)
A measure of 1000 watts of electrical power.

L

Latency
Latency is the delay between a user’s action and a web application’s response to that action, often referred to in networking terms as the total round trip time it takes for a data packet to travel.
LEED
LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is an internationally recognized green building certification system,  providing third-party verification that a building or community was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving performance across all the metrics that matter most: energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts.
Lit Fiber
A Lit Fiber service is a large bandwidth connection providing high-speed Internet or data service delivered over fiber optic lines. Lit Fiber is used by businesses that are engaged in telecommunications, wholesale Internet access, or wholesale ISP services to provide the bandwidth capacity needed for customer applications including email, file sharing, web hosting, data backup, video, VOIP, or VPN access. Lit Fiber service comes in many speeds ranging from Ethernet to DS3 to wavelengths over fiber optic lines. Lit Fiber is also known as Wholesale Carrier Ethernet, Wholesale ISP, Wholesale Internet Access, Wavelength Service, Fiber Internet, or Fiber Lit Buildings.
Logical Security
Logical security refers to the specific controls put in place to manage access to computer systems and physical spaces within the data center. Using a locked door to safeguard the data center’s server room entrance may be a physical security best practice, but having to engage in two-factor authentication (in other words, requiring two different forms of identification) to actually open the door is a form of logical security.
Low Density
A situation in which power denisty (watts per square foot) falls below the standard design parameters of a data center. The value associated with low density will vary from data center to data center.

M

Man Trap (Security Vestibule)
A man trap includes a door leading into a vestibule or hallway that leads to another door that leads to a secured area. One door has to be closed and locked before the other will open.  Thus, “trapping” a person in the vestibule or hall area.
Meet Me Room (MMR)
A meet-me room (MMR) is a secure place in a data center where networks (including carriers and other customers of the data center) can interconnect with one another. This area enables cable companies, ISPs, and other providers to cross-connect with tenants in the data center. MMR's usually contain a minimum amount of network equipment, often just un-powered patch panels. This allows for efficient and orderly high-density cabling between networks within the MMR.
Mega Data Center
A mega data center is a single facility with 15,000 or more servers. The operating costs of mega data centers leave traditional data centers in the dust. Mega data centers' frugality is absolutely essential to provide the compute power and storage for the world’s web users, economically. Mega data centers can scale massively.
Mechanical Electrical Plumbing (MEP)
Mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) refers to these aspects of building design and construction. In commercial buildings, these elements are often designed by a specialized engineering firm. MEP design is important for planning, decision making, accurate documentation, performance and cost-estimation, construction, and operating/maintaining the resulting facilities.
Metered Power
Metered power uses an energy meter, a device that measures the amount of electric energy consumed by a building, tenant space, or electrically powered equipment. Electric utilities use electric meters installed at their customers' premises to measure electric energy delivered to their customers for billing purposes. They are typically calibrated in billing units, the most common one being the kilowatt hour [kWh]. They are usually read once each billing period.
Multi-Tenant Data Center
Multi-tenant data centers are typically data centers operated by third party colocation companies for the benefit of multiple enterprise tenants. They are often referred to as colocation data centers. In some instances, wholesale data centers will operate a single-client data center on behalf of a large clients.

N

Network Access Point (NAP)
A network access point (NAP) is a major point where internet service providers (ISPs) can connect with one another in peering arrangements. NAPs were central in the early days of the Internet when it was making the transition from a government-funded network to a commercial one.
NearNet Carrier
NearNet locations are buildings that are close in proximity to your OnNet buildings. When building fiber into OnNet locations, providers will select areas to leave additional coils that can be leveraged to expand the network. The buildings that can be reached by these expansions of OnNet locations are referred to as NearNet. NearNet locations present immense opportunities for network carriers.
Network Operations Center
Also referred to as a TAC (Technical Assistance Center) or OSC (Operations Support Center). A location or locations where network technicians monitor, manage, control and support telecommunications networks.
Net Promoter Score (NPS)
Net Promoter Score (NPS) measures customer experience and predicts business growth. This proven metric transformed the business world and now provides the core measurement for customer experience management programs the world round.

O

OnNet Carrier
Being an onnet carrier means that your building has existing facilities from a carrier. It means that even if you don’t currently have service from that carrier, you can switch with ease. It also means leveraging that carrier’s other connections and facilities.
OPEX
An operating expense (OPEX) is an expense a business incurs through its normal business operations. Operating expenses include rent, equipment, inventory costs, marketing, payroll, insurance, step costs, and funds allocated for research and development. One of the typical responsibilities that management must contend with is determining how to reduce operating expenses without significantly affecting a firm's ability to compete with its competitors.
OSC (Operations Support Center)
The Operations Support Center at QTS is the central point for all customers. It's comprised of expert team leads, engineers and support representatives and handles all incident reports, customer inquiries and issues. The OSC is dedicated to handling any customer issues in an expedient manner while upholding the utmost in customer satisfaction. 

P

Peering
A voluntary interconnection of administratively separate Internet networks for the purpose of exchanging traffic between the users of each network.
Physical Security
Physical security refers to the protection of building sites and equipment (and all information and software contained therein) from theft, vandalism, natural disaster, man-made catastrophes and accidental damage. It requires solid building construction, suitable emergency-preparedness, reliable power supplies, adequate climate control, and appropriate protection from intruders.
Point of Presence (PoP)
A point of presence (PoP) is a demarcation point, access point, or physical location at which two or more networks or communication devices share a connection.
Power Distribution Unit (PDU)
A PDU is a device fitted with multiple outputs designed to deliver power to the equipment contained within a rack.
Power Purchase Agreement (PPA)
A Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) often refers to a long-term electricity supply agreement between two parties, usually between a power producer and a customer (an electricity consumer or trader). The PPA defines the conditions of the agreement, such as the amount of electricity to be supplied, negotiated prices, accounting, and penalties for non-compliance. Since it is a bilateral agreement, a PPA can take many forms and is usually tailored to the specific application. Electricity can be supplied physically or on a balancing sheet. PPAs can be used to reduce market price risks, which is why they are frequently implemented by large electricity consumers to help reduce investment costs associated with planning or operating renewable energy plants.
Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE)
The ratio of total amount of energy used by a computer data center facility to the energy delivered to computing equipment. It is used to measure the efficiency of a data center. Every facility has a different PUE.
Power Utiliazation
Utilization is the "end result" of the generation, transmission, and distribution of electric power. The energy carried by the transmission and distribution system is turned into useful work, light, heat, or a combination of these items at the utilization point. Understanding and characterizing the utilization of electric power is critical for proper planning and operation of power systems. Improper characterization of utilization can result of over or under building of power system facilities and stressing of system equipment beyond design capabilities.
Powered Shell
A data center facility with its exterior completed, connected to power and connectivity, but the interior is left unfinished.  Many data center operators deploy this strategy to conserve capital and provide themselves the flexibility needed to adapt with users' needs in mind.
Predictive Analytics
Predictive analytics describe the use of statistics and modeling to determine future performance based on current and historical data. Predictive analytics look at patterns in data to determine if those patterns are likely to emerge again, which allows businesses and investors to adjust where they use their resources to take advantage of possible future events.

R

Rack
A server rack is specifically designed to hold and organize IT equipment. Industry standard has 19" front and comes in three standard widths: 19", 23" and 24"
Raised Floor
A raised floor is a type of elevated structural floor that is supported by a metal grid and allows cables, mechanical facilities, electrical supplies and wiring to run beneath it. It is generally used in data centers, telecommunication environments, military command centers and modern office buildings. Sometimes there is additional structural support and lighting that allows for a crawl space or walkway underneath. A raised floor is also a common way to cool a building by using the empty space beneath the raised floor as a plenum chamber to dispense conditioned air.
RE100
RE100 is the global corporate renewable energy initiative bringing together hundreds of large and ambitious businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity.
Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT)
A real estate investment trust (REIT) is a company that owns, operates, or finances income-generating real estate. To qualify as a REIT, a company must comply with certain provisions in the Internal Revenue Code (IRC). These requirements include to primarily own income-generating real estate for the long term and distribute income to shareholders.
Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance (REBA)
The Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance (REBA) is a membership association for large-scale energy buyers seeking to procure renewable energy across the U.S. REBA's goal is to reach a resilient zero-carbon energy system where every organization has a viable, expedient, and cost-effective pathway to renewable energy.
Renewable Energy Certificate (REC)
RECs are tradable commodities that show that 1 megawatt-hour of electricity was purchased from a renewable source, such as solar, wind, biomass or geothermal. An increasing number of companies are buying RECs to offset the amount of electricity generated from fossil fuels that their data centers consume.
Redundancy
The duplication of critical components or functions of a system with the intention of increasing reliability of the system, usually in the case of a backup or fail-safe.
Remote Hands
Remote hands is the general name for a service offered by colocation providers that allows customers to delegate IT management and maintenance tasks within a colocation facility to technicians hired by the provider.
Renewable Power
Often referred to as clean energy, renewable power comes from natural sources or processes that are constantly replenished. For example, sunlight or wind keep shining and blowing, even if their availability depends on time and weather.

S

Sale/Leaseback
When the owner and end-user of a data center simultaneously sells its facility to another entity and leases back the requisite amount of data center space from the new owner.
Software-Defined Networking (SDN)
Software-Defined Networking (SDN) is a network architecture approach that enables the network to be intelligently and centrally controlled, or ‘programmed,’ using software applications. This helps operators manage the entire network consistently and holistically, regardless of the underlying network technology.
State Local Government & Education (SLED)
A market within the public sector that represents many different levels of government (states, cities, counties, education agencies and special districts) representing approximately 30,000 unique government buying agencies.
Subsea Cable
A cable laid on the sea bed between land-based stations to carry telecommunication signals across stretches of ocean and sea.
Suite
Hard-walled rooms within a data hall for customers requiring more data center space. Suites typically offer more square footage than cages and offer dedicated security features.
Sustainability
We are committed to a cleaner, more sustainable world. This means caring for and improving the lives of current and future employees, customers, investors and community members, and taking equal care of the environment and natural resources we all share. This helps us realize our vision of enhancing the care and improvement of human life and minimizing our carbon footprint through technology and manpower.

T

Transport
The transport layer (Layer 4) of interconnection is responsible for end-to-end communication over a network. It collects messages segments from applications and transmits them into the network layer (Layer 3).

U

Uninterupptable Power Supply (UPS)
An electrical apparatus that provides emergency power to a load when the input power source or main power fails. A UPS differs from an auxiliary or emergency power system or standby generator in that it will provide near-instantaneous protection from input power interruptions, by supplying energy stored in batteries, supercapacitors, or flywheels. The on-battery run-time of most uninterruptible power sources is relatively short (only a few minutes) but sufficient to start a standby power source or properly shut down the protected equipment.

V

Virtual Power Purchase Agreement (VPPA)
Within a VPPA contract, the corporate buyer does not own and is not responsible for the physical electrons generated by the energy project. This is a financial transaction, exchanging a fixed-price cash flow for a variable-priced cash flow and renewable energy certificates (RECs). Because the VPPA is purely financial, the buyer still needs to meet its electricity load through traditional channels—therefore, the VPPA means the buyer’s relationship with its utility at the retail level remains unchanged.
Virtual Reality
An artificial environment which is experienced through sensory stimuli (such as sights and sounds) provided by a computer and in which one's actions partially determine what happens in the environment.
Virtual Tour
A simulation of an existing location, usually composed of a sequence of videos or still images.

W

Wholesale Data Centers
Wholesale refers to when a data center owner leases a large footprint to clients. Clients typically have large infrastructure needs but don’t want to build their own data center.
Water Usage Effectiveness (WUE)
Water Usage Effectiveness (WUE) is a metric to help data centers measure how much water a facility uses for cooling and other building needs.