On the surface, this month's issue of Mission Critical resembles earlier issues in several key ways. The cover format remains unchanged, and our new art director, Jennifer Hall, hasn't redesigned the inside pages. Our cover story is very topical, describing one of the few Tier 3 colos in the U.S. Our lineup of columnists continues to bring excellent information to discussions about their areas of interest.

But something is very different.

In addition to continue covering the ongoing debates over power and cooling and energy efficiency and providing more information about best practices, we are covering fire suppression, disaster recovery, and monitoring. In short, three of the features in this issue examine physical and data security in the data center. I sincerely hope that you enjoy the interesting angles that these articles take.

First, the main focus of our cover story is the achievement of a high tier classification by a U.S. colo, a surprisingly unusual accomplishment. Still you can read through the article and see very quickly how the article consciously examines the use of this data center as part of disaster recovery strategy by hospitals and banks.

Two, our feature on Rush Hospital provides significant information about its fire suppression system, which represents the first time Mission Critical has devoted so much space to fire protection in an application.

And a third feature is a case history that describes how a new environmental monitoring system provides early warning to a small software company about equipment failures that have caused significant downtime in the past.

Of course, we continue to cover more familiar topics such as metrics, maintenance, and design in articles in this issue. I'm very glad to include on overview piece evaluating air containment methods in virtualized environments by Julius Neudorfer. He's written in these pages before.

So you see, I'm proud of this issue not because it is different, but because the change represents all the ways we are trying to grow to better serve our readers.