Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Data Center Power & Cooling Demands Continue to Rise

If you support data centers then you are most likely scrambling to provide more power and cooling as consumption demands continue to trend up. Gartner studies project a 13% compounded annual growth rate, predicting continuing increases in power consumption. This dynamic is largely driven by the move to blade servers in data centers. Blades are smaller, but also more power hungry. Combine the increased power requirement per server with the ability to pack more servers into a data center by virtue of their smaller size, and you have a double whammy affect.

A couple of my colleagues attended the recent IDC conference in San Francisco and came away with insight on key industry trends. These highlights align with our own experiences as we, like most others, grapple with this issue.

Virtualization of servers (combining multiple applications on one server) is foundational to managing computer center energy consumption.

The new C Class server blades are more energy efficient and allow greater virtualization. Helpful, but marginally so as the efficiency improvements do not reach the levels needed to fully offset increased density. Still, it is a definite step in the right direction.

Greening of data centers is gaining momentum and becoming more important to data center operators and FM’s who support them. In part because of the “greening” of American business, but also because of the financial penalties of not being energy efficient. Users are no longer saying “get me more power at any cost.” Now they are saying, “get me the power I need in the most efficient manner possible.”

For more information on data center issues and trends see the IDC website at .

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