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More Ways to Save on Data Center Energy Usage

Greening the data center is about more than just saving the planet

green itGreening the data center is about more than just saving the planet. For many folks, it’s about cutting your data center budget, controlling costs and continuing to provide increased amounts of IT services with less resources. There is a very specific financial incentive to reduce your data center usage, quite separate from saving the rainforests.

Yet, saving on your data center usage can be a challenging thing. Implementing more efficient cooling systems, adjusting power distribution systems and making manual or procedural changes will all help to save energy, but how much they save can vary greatly from one data center to the next.

Here are three more ways you can go about saving on your data center’s energy usage:

•   Boost the virtual-to-physical server ratio. Most organizations, even those that are significantly virtualized, still have some opportunities to improve in this area. For example, only about a third of the x86 servers in most organizations are virtual. This is changing already, and the trend is to significantly increase virtualization, which will then reduce data center energy costs. Just be certain you’re prepared for a higher concentration of power per square foot that comes from having increased numbers of cores on a given physical machine.

•    Increase the efficiency of your virtualization. Virtualization alone doesn’t guarantee efficiency. You also need to be able to maximize your utilization rations and use that virtualization hardware in a more efficient manner. You’ll break even at about the 4-to-1 virtual server to physical host ratio, but many physical hosts can accommodate as many as 10 or 15 virtual servers.

•    Consider server refresh. Older servers have more significant power requirements. In some cases, the only way to continue to reduce your energy usage in the data center is to look into new physical host equipment. In addition, for organizations who can’t virtualize as much as would be ideal, putting in new equipment that sucks less juice may be your only choice. Newer architecture, including things like blade systems and converged infrastructure, will reduce your power overhead and will, in the long run, also assist you with virtualization.


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Unitiv, Inc., is a professional provider of enterprise IT solutions. Unitiv delivers its services from its headquarters in Alpharetta, Georgia, USA, and its regional office in Iselin, New Jersey, USA. Unitiv provides a strategic approach to its service delivery, focusing on three core components: People, Products, and Processes. The People to advise and support customers. The Products to design and build solutions. The Processes to govern and manage post-implementation operations.