Posts Tagged Green IT
The power of Green, it’s working! That’s right, growth of the world’s electricity consumed by data centers has slowed substantially despite the rapid growth in the number and power of data centers. The electricity conservation is directly linked to the adoption of Green friendly tactics of powering and cooling of many forward-thinking data centers.
A recent study executed by Stanford Professor Jonathan G. Koomey, PhD by request of the New York Times found that approximately 1.3% of the world’s electricity is being consumed by data centers. However, the growth rate from 2000-2005 indicated that by 2010, data centers should have been consuming 2.2% of the world’s electricity. What slowed the growth? Well the recession actually helped (maybe the only time anyone will ever say that) but more significantly, through an industry-wide effort to make data centers more eco-friendly via various energy saving techniques.
With VMworld beginning in Las Vegas this week, we are sure to hear all about new and innovative ways to expand your organization’s approach to cloud computing. “Project Horizon” was previewed at last year’s VMworld, a cloud-based management service that aims to establish a users cloud identity. With Project Horizon and the seemingly thousands of other cloud projects occurring, the demand for massive data centers is on the rise. As their need continues to grow, the immense power they use has become so much of an issue that metrics were created to measure how efficient data centers are. One of these metrics is Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE), a ratio of total amount of power used by the facility to the power delivered to computing equipment. An ideal PUE is 1.0, which would mean the computing equipment is using all of the power coming into the facility. However, a PUE of 1.0 is very difficult to achieve due to the need for lighting, cooling, and other various systems used in the facilities that are not considered computing devices. An additional way companies are trying to reduce cost and power consumption is by building modular data centers. The modular data center approach adds capacity as it is needed in manageable, cost-effective increments. Below you will see five traditional data centers that use alternative energy as a power source, as well as a brief look at currently available modular data centers.
Server designers face enormous challenges in the coming decade. Huge increases in processing power combined with the effects of virtualization are constraining server real estate and testing heat density limits. These issues are even more pronounced in very high performance system environments.
By 2008, high-end blade servers had already reached 10kWatts/sq. ft. in heat density, and the historical increase of 30% per year in heat density for servers is holding steady. If these trends continue, the operational costs associated with space, power and cooling for most servers will exceed the acquisition costs over the life of the equipment.
Server manufacturers are using several approaches to reduce heat density, including:
On August 25th Dave Robbins, CTO, IT Infrastructure at NetApp will be discussing how they have transformed their IT operations from a legacy of inefficient and costly practices to its current level of enviable data center efficiency illustrated by a predicted PUE of 1.2 in their latest data center.
Dave’s discussion will be shaped by the accomplishments of his team over the past couple of years and to give some insight into the upcoming session the following are some of the team’s achievements.
By implementing VMware they reduced x86 based clients from 4600 to 230 saving $1.3M in power and cooling and reducing the number of racks needed by 182.
Last week GE announced a major milestone in their attempts to commercialize holographic based storage by demonstrating micro-holographic material that can support 500GB in a standard DVD size disk. This is equivalent to 20 single Blu-ray discs or 100 DVD’s. GE’s micro-holographic storage differs from the traditional holographic storage from such companies as InPhase Technologies in that it uses smaller and less complex holograms.
It was another successful and busy week at Storage Networking World (SNW) Spring 2009 in Orlando. Although the number of vendors, by my count, was 48% of what it was in Spring 2008, it was apparent that the vendors who did participate sent fewer people. However, the SNW officials said that the end-user attendance was 92% of what it was in Spring 2008. Obviously travel budgets have been cut, and this was reflected in the end-user attendance, which had shifted to many local IT professionals from the central Florida region.
The Spring 2009 Storage Networking World ends today. It was a busy week for the Wikibon team as we were briefed by more than 25 technology companies and tweeted the live action to the Wikibon community. Bill Mottram, Dennis Martin and I gave presentations during the week, Dennis on SSD for Microsoft Apps, Bill on optimizing energy and efficiency and me with Rich Avila on how Virtualization Energizes Cal State U East Bay.
Yesterday, the Wikibon community heard from Cal State U East Bay’s Rich Avila. He, like other guests on Wikibon, including BT’s Michael Crader, have cited the benefits of combining server and storage virtualization. Yet numerous customers we speak with don’t virtualize storage arrays under VMware.
Industry data from IDC and Forrester over the past few years clearly shows EMC dominates in virtualized server environments as the backend storage platform of choice. The data ranges from 40% to close to 50% market share. Clearly these EMC arrays are not sitting behind Invista so one can only assume the capacity of these arrays is not virtualized. Folks like 3PAR of course would say that this is a missed opportunity– once you try a fully virtualized platform under VMware you’ll see the advantages and won’t go back.
Recently the President put as all on notice that a Cap and Trade policy is likely to become a reality in 2009.
For those who are unfamiliar with the term Cap and Trade it is an environmental policy designed with the intent of reducing undesired emissions by mandating emission levels and establishing caps and in the words of the eloquent bureaucrat it provides environmental accountability without inhibiting growth and rewards innovation, efficiency and early action. Please excuse my skepticism.