Ethiopian Roads Administration gets a 300m birr Data Center
The Ethiopian Roads Administration (ERA) has installed a data centre at its headquarters on Ras Abebe Aregay St., near Mexico Square, with a cost of 300 million Ethiopian birr obtained from the World Bank. Data sheets indicate “The data centre can host 1,200 users and a storage capacity of up to 150 terabytes, a size 2.13 times the Google Earth database.”
Why the comparison to the Google Earth database ?
The data centre also boasts a unified communications feature, combining voice, text and video calls in one system. Employees connected to the office network could be able to access the array of communication methods available, while the feature makes it possible for a single phone line to be dedicated to multiple users. The final component is aimed at attaining a paperless workplace, automating and digitizing workflow and document storage.
I think the value for money is A bit off and the fact that they feel the need to compare it to Google earth servers makes me wonder if the contractors took some liberties with funding what do you think ? Remember it only hosts 1,200 users if you want to compare to Google Earth servers fine how many users does it host verses your 1,200 hmmm can ETHIO TECH get the next data center contract. Please 🙏
The project started four years ago with the support of the World Bank’s Capacity Development Initiative. The World Bank has funded the task of fully digitizing the construction and maintenance of roads with more than 6,000 workers. Over the last three years, ERA has overseen the construction of 132 new roads, 88 maintenance projects and 16 bridges. Stakeholders want the new data center to reduce costs and make operations more efficient.
Formerly known as the Ethiopian Highway Authority, the Highway Administration has a contract with technology service provider IE Network Solutions Plc. IE Network was founded in 2004 by network engineer Merried Bekele and its shareholders with a capital of 5 million bulls. He has been involved in several network infrastructure projects, including the Directorate of Audit, Dire Dawa University, Ethiopia Commercial Bank (CBE), and building a data center for BGI Ethiopia. The company has more than 100 employees and annual revenue of 200 million Br.
AH Consulting, a Ugandan-based company, oversaw the latest work with ERA.
IE Network works with Silicon Networks FZE, an IT company based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). However, the company is lagging behind in processing credit letters to import the required materials, which is 90% of the hardware required for the data center. According to IE Network engineer Dagem Berhanu, the project suffered from letter of credit (LC) acquisition and shipping delays.
The data center consists of a virtualized desktop structure that allows users to share computer functions such as RAM, storage, and processors. Letarik Terefe, leader of the highway management software systems team, said this allows administrators to reduce the cost of physical computers by allowing users to plug in and receive terminal devices that can be used on any computer. The data center can accommodate 1,200 users and up to 150 terabytes of storage, which is 2.13 times the size of the Google Earth database.
The data center also has unified communications capabilities that integrate voice, text, and video calls into one system. Employees connected to the office network have access to the various communication methods available. This feature also allows a single phone line to be dedicated to multiple users. The final component aims to create a paperless workplace by automating and digitizing workflow and document storage.
Government data centers are the latest in a series of similar projects. Last year, the Ministry of Innovation Technology launched the National Data Center, Birr’s $ 1 billion budget repository that can store all the information and statistics from federal agencies. According to Abiyot Sinamo (PhD), director of ICT development and management at the ministry, the implementation of cloud services could bring budgets up to 1.5 billion bulls. Last year, Ethiopia partnered with Huawei to launch a data center with 800 servers. Private companies also participated in the battle, with more than four companies embarking on the construction of a data center at Addis Ababa ICT Park.
However, according to the national digital strategic document prepared by the ministry, there are problems with emerging businesses. Lack of regulation and certification in the data center leads to poor management of physical security and data protection.
Solomon Mohammed is an IT infrastructure expert who has worked in the industry for nearly a decade. It turns out that the existing data center meets the minimum requirements but does not meet industry standards. According to Solomon, the main obstacles are the lack of resources due to the lack of cheap technology and the lack of availability of skilled workers. He believes that data centers need to have access to a variety of power sources, have appropriate cooling systems in place, and have disaster recovery procedures in place to meet basic standards.
Data centers are expensive, and government agencies shouldn’t waste resources trying to build their own data centers, says Abiyot.
“Independent development is not only costly, it’s not safe,” Abyot said.
I must say i strongly disagree with Abyot as a private citizen i dont trust my data on google servers and host my own at home why would the government trust a cloud provider ?