Green IT progress
Suppliers push greener IT through consolidated storage, thin clients, mini-desktops and application migration.
UK Application migration product supplier Celona Technologies believes that the greatest green gains will come from massive server and storage retirement delivered through application consolidation.
It has a new way of looking at UK IT power consumption, stating 'The UK's Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) estimated last October that the UK's PCs and servers were already consuming 14 percent more power than the entire power consumption of Luxembourg with this figure still rising.' But, really, I mean, where is the surprise in this? Celona would have us embrace some sense of outrage and shame I suppose.
While endorsing the ONStor messages above, Celona's chief marketing officer, Paul Hollingsworth, tries to relate this to application migration: "Power-efficient storage is obviously really important but more important is ensuring that you have streamlined your applications and data. Duplicated data and applications are a major problem in many organisations and these cause a range of operational inefficiencies."
Well, yes, so we should de-dupe our data. Celona doesn't have a data de-dupe capability, preferring to stress the idea of application consolidation. Hollingsworth uses another survey to push this idea: "Celona recently conducted a survey among telecoms executives and 59 percent said they'd been so discouraged by an application migration that they decided not to go ahead with it. Our message to them is that the new-generation of migration technology overcomes these problems, making the long-awaited benefits of application consolidation a reality and is therefore a step towards becoming greener."
Celona products are being used by BT in an application consolidation project called One IT. BT's Steve O'Donnell says that, to date, One IT has enabled BT to decommission and consolidate over 1000 racks of servers, resulting in a net saving of 22GW hours per year. He said: "We calculate this translates to a (power) cost saving of just under £1.8 million per annum or around 3,110 metric tonnes of carbon per year." That's impressive.
Server retirement numbers through server virtualisation can be dramatic. Storage box retirement through storage virtualisation seems less dramatic. It seems that desktop and thin client suppliers and server-based application suppliers, such as VMware and Celona, have relatively straightforward and clear accounts of how using their products can rapidly lower IT power consumption costs.
Not so with storage. It's apparent that energy costs and supply limitations aren't yet high enough to drive datacentres to consolidate their storage as fast as they are consolidating servers.