Like many of my generation of IT people, my first exposure to a datacenter was a room with a carefully regulated environment that contained one or two very large computer systems. In my case those big boxes were a Control Data Corporation CDC 7600 and some variant of the IBM 360 and the people responsible for maintaining them were exceptionally careful about keeping the environment of their server rooms in a very narrow window.
Almost 40 years later and the basic mindset has not changed very much. While the datacenter now contains hundreds or even thousands of computers working as hard as those big iron boxes in the 1970’s, the datacenter technology relative to maintaining the temperature still is primarily based around the same mantra of maintaining a very narrow window for proper operating temperature and humidity.
The Green Grid would like to change that fundamental approach to datacenter environmental issues and their new white paper Data Center Efficiency and IT Equipment Reliability at Wider Operating Temperature and Humidity Ranges outlines the how and why operators should look at running their datacenters with a much broader environmental range.
The white paper addresses the impact of the broader operating temperature and humidity range on the failure rate of datacenter hardware and attempts to dispel the “conventional wisdom” mindset that prevents datacenter operators from operating their facilities in the most energy efficient manner possible.
The white paper also makes use of the Green Grid's Air-side Free Cooling maps that show, on a region be region basis, how suitable each geographic area is for using free-air cooling and how operators can plan to take advantage of the free air economy.