Data centre energy costs a rising concern

Companies need to address their data centre energy use so it does not become an escalating problem, Gartner says.

Data centre

Energy costs are going to be the fastest rising cost in data centres as companies begin to expand their IT infrastructure after coming out of the recession.

So says Gartner, which noted already around 12 per cent of all data centre expenditure goes on energy-related areas.

To get an accurate reading of energy use in such facilities, companies need to measure in six central areas including building, electrical facilities, building facilities, racks, IT hardware and virtual machines, the analyst firm advised.

"What is needed is a breakdown of the ideal approach to data centre energy management into a pragmatic approach that will provide sufficient information for most operational planning purposes," said Rakesh Kumar, research vice president at Gartner.

Brian Murray, consultant at IT service provider 2e2, hopes the Gartner findings will help organisations realise they need monitor energy use if they want to better manage not just costs but also performance in their data centres too.

"Increasing energy costs are simply reiterating the fact that expanding server capacity in a traditional' manner, i.e. by simply adding more servers, is no longer sustainable," he said. "Organisations should first make sure that they are using the resources they already have to their best potential."

Murray recommended introducing consolidation and virtualisation where necessary in order to make the most of legacy systems and older machines.

However, another recent Gartner report indicated virtualisation will challenge IT infrastructure and operations more than any other issue through to 2015.

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