Gartner: Power efficiency not enough for green data centers

If 'greening' the data center is the goal, power efficiency is only the starting point.

Increased power efficiency alone won't be sufficient to turn data centers truly "green," Gartner said Wednesday in advance of a major data center conference.

"If 'greening' the data center is the goal, power efficiency is the starting point but not sufficient on its own," Gartner analyst Rakesh Kumar said in a short research note. "'Green' requires an end-to-end, integrated view of the data center, including the building, energy efficiency, waste management, asset management, capacity management, technology architecture, support services, energy sources and operations."

Legacy data centers are becoming obsolete, particularly when it comes to addressing environmental problems, Gartner said. More advanced power and cooling capabilities are needed to support data center equipment that is increasingly dense and power hungry.

"If they are not fully aware of the problem, data center managers run the risk of doubling their energy costs between 2005 and 2011," Gartner stated. "If we assume that data center energy costs continue to double every five years, they will have increased 1,600 percent between 2005 and 2025."

IT should strive to build data centers that are like intelligent living organisms, heavy on modelling and measuring tools, running workloads where energy is cheapest, and addressing technical, financial and environmental demands while offering 99.999% availability, the analyst firm says.

Locations should be chosen strategically, Gartner says, noting that high-bay, warehouse-like buildings result in more efficient rack layout and airflow. Sites should be developed with modular components, incorporate recycling and alternative energy sources, HVAC systems and perhaps water cooling.

Monitoring tools are also crucial, for example to manage servers, moving away from an "always on" mentality, Gartner says. (See Six Steps to a Green Data Center.)

"Tomorrow's data center is moving from being static to becoming a living organism, where modelling and measuring tools will become one of the major elements of its management," Kumar says. "In this way, data centers will become more energy efficient, be better for the environment and use emerging green IT products and processes. In essence, this living organism data center will be the green data center."

(See A green IT checklist: From first steps to stretch goals.)

Gartner will provide more analysis on green data center trends, as well as topics like virtualization, storage, servers and IT operations during the first week of December at the analyst firm's 27th annual Data Center Conference in Las Vegas.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jon Brodkin

Network World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?