Showing posts with label data center. Show all posts
Showing posts with label data center. Show all posts

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Impact of IT Upgrades on Energy Usage and Operational Costs

With energy costs skyrocketing, it is becoming increasingly important that data center operators incorporate energy efficiency savings without sacrificing performance. In answer, the market has been flooded with various facility and product design techniques promising energy efficiency savings. But how well do they actually work?

To find out, our team at PTS upgraded the IT systems within our own facility and operations in order to validate the energy efficiency savings estimates.

Our first step was to create a baseline to measure the IT performance, capacity, and energy consumption. Next, we redesigned our IT systems with the goal of reducing energy consumption. We also wanted to increase the capacity without sacrificing performance. Lastly, we measured results to assess confirmation of the expectations.

In the end, we consolidated our sever footprint by 60% and reduced IT energy consumption by 24%, yielding a 26% drop in facility power consumption.

Our conclusion is that these results are not anecdotal in that the energy savings realized as a result of this study are completely scalable with larger, more complex data center and computer room facilities. Additionally, these energy savings may be realized without sacrificing IT performance and systems availability, while improving overall systems capacity.

To find out the details of our systems redesign and what specific strategies yield the best results, read our complete white paper “Impact of IT Upgrades on Energy Usage and Operational Costs” [PDF].

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

PTS Education & White Papers

Looking to continue its tradition of providing content-rich educational materials for data center managers through its website, PTS has significantly upgraded its white paper section. As we continue to add our own industry-specific content through white paper development, presentations at numerous industry events, discussion threads on the PTS blog and through the LinkedIn Computer Room Design group, we strive to stay up-to-date on the latest facility- and IT-related trends.

To that end we have revamped our media library (registration required). Now you can find relevant educational papers by facility, IT or specific topics including: Consolidation, Cooling, Financial, General, Management, Network, Power, Safety, Security, Servers, Storage, and Virtualization. Interesting white papers to add to your reading list include:

Proper Sizing of IT Power & Cooling (by Green Grid). Between 2000 and 2006, energy requirements for data centers doubled, and they are on track to double again by 2011. In the same time period, typical per-rack heat densities went from 1 kW to 7 kW, and they are estimated to exceed 20 kW per rack by 2010. This places tremendous importance on a data center facility planner's ability to properly budget for future power and cooling infrastructure requirements. Today's energy costs and efficiency demands necessitate a more accurate method of determining those requirements. This white paper has been developed to introduce the reader to the many new and highly accurate software tools available for estimating power and cooling capacity requirements. Click here for the full white paper.

Server Consolidation and Containment With Virtual Infrastructure (by VMware). To meet the constant demand to deploy, maintain and grow a broad array of services and applications, , IT organizations must continually add new servers. However, as a consequence of purchasing more and more servers, organizations face a growing server sprawl presenting challenges that include: rising costs, poor return on investment, decreasing manageability, and reduced efficiency. Click here for the full white paper.

Increasing Data Center Efficiency with Server Power Measurements (by Intel). Intel IT defined methods for analyzing computing energy efficiency within our design computing environment, using measurements of actual server power consumption and utilization. We used these methods to identify trends and opportunities for improving data center efficiency, and to implement a pilot project that increased data center computing capacity. Click here for the full white paper.

Optimizing Power Distribution for High-Density Computing (by Eaton). Fueled by the rapid rise of technologies such as virtualization and blade servers, computing densities in today's data centers are climbing dramatically. As a result, server enclosures are requiring more power than ever before. The result of this is a new and demanding set of power distribution challenges. To meet the power requirements of their increasingly dense server racks, organizations are looking for power circuits and power distribution units (PDUs) that have adequate power capacity and make optimal use of panelboards, but don't drive such high densities that they are prohibitively expensive to cool. Click here for the full white paper.

Is Your IT Infrastructure Ready for Tomorrow? Preparing for a 10GbE Future (by David Reine, The Clipper Group). An IT infrastructure will be the key to the success of the enterprise data center in the years to come. Because of the poor utilization of existing single-core microprocessor servers, the IT staff of the typical data center has embarked on a journey of consolidation and virtualization to reduce server sprawl, simplify data center complexity, and reduce the total cost of ownership (TCO) of the IT infrastructure. Click here for the full white paper.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

2008 Data Center Industry Trends

A recent article from Network World points to security as the dominant issue for the data center design industry in 2008. Potential threats identified by experts include:

  • Malware attacks which piggy back on major events such as the ‘08 Olympics or the US Presidential Elections
  • The opportunity for the first serious security exploit in corporate VoIP networks
  • Additional malware vulnerability for users as participation in Web 2.0 continues to grow

Other important issues for 2008 as identified by Network World staff include:
  • The early adoption of 802.11n WLAN technology
  • A shift in IT’s approach to managing mission critical environments as virtualization and green computing are deployed more broadly
  • The growing acceptance of open source technology at the corporate level
  • Tightly controlled budgets as IT spending growth drops (particularly in response to news of economic recession)
  • Increased demand for “IT hybrids” – professionals with both business acumen and technical know-how – as the most sought-after hires

Source: Security dominates 2008 IT agenda

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Data Centers vs. Computer Rooms: What’s the Difference?

The differences between data center and computer room design don’t amount to a hill of beans for most people. The terms are often used interchangeably, but using them correctly makes a big difference if you’re trying to communicate with a data center design firm or an IT expert. If you want to sound like a pro, it’s important to know what sets data centers and computer rooms apart.

Data centers are designed to provide a secure, power protected, environmentally controlled space used for housing server, network and computer equipment. As the operating theatre for an enterprise’s network service delivery, a data center site may utilize the entire site and building shell.

The design of computer rooms is more limited in scope. A computer room is merely a functional space within a data center. It serves as a secure environment for the equipment and cabling directly related to the critical load. In other words, a computer room’s basic design is that of a collapsed data center where the entrance room is contained within the computer room space.

The easiest way to tell the design of a data center from that of a computer room is by looking at how the space’s functional pieces are put together. A data center is a larger space composed of smaller spaces, such as a computer room, network operations center, staging area and conference rooms.

In either case, data center design and computer room design are both accomplished by identifying the key design criteria for the two main areas of the project focus – the technology infrastructure and services (IT) and the support infrastructure and services (the facility). The key design criteria are:
- Business Objects (Scope)
- Availability Requirement
- Power and Cooling Density

While site selection is also a criterion for data center projects, a computer room design project can be as involved as a bigger base-building project or as simple as an upgrade of an existing computer room.

Understanding the differences between data centers and computer rooms is the first step on the road to delivering a successful data center or computer room project. The more you know about the elements of a data center, the easier it will be for you to get your design ideas across to others. If you’d like to learn more about this topic or others, we invite you to visit our White Paper archive at (registration required) or contact us.