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Green data center conversation begins to shift

By Donna Donnowitz
November 19, 2014

The goal of a green data center has long overlapped with corporate aims to reduce operating cost. However, though-leaders in the community have not always agreed on how to frame the conversation, or identify a bright line that determines whether or not a data center qualifies as "green." Considering the massive amounts of energy consumed by data centers, the National Resource Defense Fund estimated the industry used over 90 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity in 2013 alone, it could be argued that one would be remiss to describe any data center as green in the first place. Demand for data storage continues to increase the complexity of running the data center, subsequently increasing energy consumption. The IT community has responded to this growth by changing how the industry frames its sustainability goals.

Energy problems need complex answers
One reason that data facility experts have reshaped the conversation about green data centers is because the industry has found that the old maxims of sustainable design are no longer relevant. For example, Data Center Dynamics notes that Power Utilization Effectiveness is no longer accepted as a primary measure of a center's efficiency. However, the ratio does not account for the relative efficiency of each piece of equipment in the data center, making it difficult for to measure and isolate their biggest problem areas. The rate of data center growth is also so rapid that effectively reducing the net energy use by storage facilities is impossible. As a result, IT experts has begun to focus their energies on developing best practices for standards instead of working to meet sliding efficiency standards.

Solutions lie in infrastructure and the cloud
By focusing on improving the performance and organization of their hardware, data centers can follow in the footsteps in the industry while reducing operating costs. Data centers that are designed around the specific needs of a company tend to run more efficiently as IT can cut extraneous, power-hungry hardware from the infrastructure. Companies can also expand the reach of their data center (without expanding their square footage or carbon footprint) by linking up long-distance employees via a remote console server. A bit of creativity and adept application of the latest technology can help data centers to run as efficiently as possible.

Perle's wide range of 1 to 48 port Perle Console Servers provide data center managers and network administrators with secure remote management of any device with a serial console port. Plus, they are the only truly fault tolerant Console Servers on the market with the advanced security functionality needed to easily perform secure remote data center management and out-of-band management of IT assets from anywhere in the world.


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