Power Distribution Unit

What Does Power Distribution Unit Mean?

A power distribution unit (PDU) is a type of electrical component that distributes and manages electricity supply to computers, servers and networking devices within a data center environment.


It provides a central unit to control and distribute electricity across the data center components.

Power distribution units are also known as main distribution units (MDU).

Techopedia Explains Power Distribution Unit

A power distribution unit is an electrical device that has multiple sources of integrated power outputs. Each power output socket can be connected with a computing or networking device directly. There are two types of PDUs: floor mounted and rack mounted.

A PDU has the ability to manage and distribute large amounts of electricity and usually is directly installed in the rack. PDUs generally have the ability to be connected and accessed over the network or remotely, and provide data and statistics on the power usage effectiveness (PUE).


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.