Reducing Server Power Consumption and Breakers for Data Centers

Rapidly increasing energy costs have had a great financial impact worldwide, and business and industry are not exempt from this increased pressure. The IT industry in particular is a field that has been hard hit by rising energy expenses. In 2006 alone IT infrastructures in the US were reported to have spent over 4.5 billion dollars on energy. It consequently makes sense that the industry is searching for innovative new ways to save on energy bills. Usually components such as cooling and data center layout are focused upon. However, in this particular case the focus will be on the role of servers in energy conservation including breakers for data centers.

One of the main methods currently concentrated upon regarding increased energy efficiency within the IT industry, is making data centers more energy efficient. Numerous proposals have been put forward regarding how exactly this should be done and much progress has been made involving both technological advances, and improved operations practices.

Energy Conserving Breakers for Data Centers

Until recently servers were considered to be of no importance when it came to energy conservation. Old style servers didn’t require much energy and their density within data centers was not significant enough to be problematic (The Green Grid, 2007). As the internet became more noteworthy however, so became the role that servers played, with larger and more powerful servers finding their way into contemporary data centers.

As energy efficiency has become such a big issue in modern data centers many of the latest generations of servers have built in energy monitoring devices, which allows a manager insight into the devices’ energy usage, as well as overall server energy usage within a facility. Although older generation servers don?t have this energy monitoring system, there are other technological advancements that allow the energy use of these older model servers to be monitored in real time. Once energy use can be monitored, changes can be made to correct any flaws in the system, hence improving efficiency.

Power Saving Functions

Power-saving functions are also a recent addition to modern servers. These functions involve reducing the frequency multiplier and the Central Processing Unit (CPU) voltage resulting in an optimal performance state (The Green Grid, 2007). This allows the energy requirements of a server to be dynamically reduced during times of low workload, while still offering maximum performance during periods of high workload. Power-saving functions also consequently help to save on cooling costs which are generally one of the biggest expenses modern IT centers face.

Right-sizing of a server system is another modern consideration when increasing energy efficiency within a facility. This involves making sure that the amount of servers and the server components used are correctly matched to the available workload. This is easily done via a performance analyses in conjunction with the collection of server utilization data across all servers (Microsoft, 2009). The use of virtual servers is another contemporary right-sizing tool, generally involving the creation of numerous virtual servers on one physical server. These virtual servers can then be used individually or be fused into a collective that acts as a single server. This in turn allows for the use of less hardware within a data center, and once again saves on cooling and general operational costs.

Although all of these modern server functions allow for the conservation of a significant amount of energy, for a data center to efficiently and sensibility discuss its energy usage, server efficiency must be looked at in a combination of equipment like breakers for data centers and numerous other factors that effect facility energy consumption.