4 power advantages of cloud computing

4 power advantages of cloud computing

Summary: There has been some debate here on ZDnet in the past few months over the energy efficiency profile of the cloud, especially since Greenpeace came out blasting the high-tech industry at large for not thinking through the power equation properly.So, it is perhaps natural that one of the keynote presentatations during the opening day of the Uptime Institute’s Symposium 2010 here in New York focused on the “Power-Related Advantages of Cloud Computing.

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There has been some debate here on ZDnet in the past few months over the energy efficiency profile of the cloud, especially since Greenpeace came out blasting the high-tech industry at large for not thinking through the power equation properly.

So, it is perhaps natural that one of the keynote presentatations during the opening day of the Uptime Institute’s Symposium 2010 here in New York focused on the “Power-Related Advantages of Cloud Computing.”

According to Jonathan Koomey, who is a consulting professor for Stanford University and a project scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, there are four primary reasons why cloud computing (at least philosophically speaking) should be a more power-efficient approach than an in-house data center. This is the order in which Koomey lists them.

  1. Workload diversity: Because you will have many different sorts of users making use of the cloud resources – different applications, different feature set preferences and different usage volumes – this will improve hardware utilization and therefore make better use of power that you’re using anyway to keep a server up and running.
  2. Economies of economies of scale: There are certain fixed costs associated with setting up any physical data center. According to Koomey, implementing technical and organization changes is cheaper per computation for larger organizations than for IT small shops. And because you will have more people using the infrastructure, again, you can spread those costs more efficiently.
  3. Power-management flexibility: Koomey postulates that it’s easier to manage virtual servers than physical servers from a power perspective. If hardware fails, the load can automatically be deployed elsewhere. Likewise, in theory, you could move all virtual loads to certain servers when loads are light and power-down or idle those that aren’t being used.
  4. You can pick the most efficient site possible: So, for example, if you are a business based in a state that uses primarily coal-powered electricity, do you really want to site your data center there? “If you have a data center in a place that is all coal-powered, this is a big business risk,” Koomey says. In a future where there might actually be a tax on the carbon your company produces, that would certainly be a risk indeed.

The 451 Group, which is now part of the Uptime Institute, has published a separate report on IT and the greening of the cloud. The point being that none of you should forget about power considerations when you're evaluating a cloud service provider, even if you are "just" an IT manager.

Topics: Servers, Cloud, Data Centers, Hardware, Storage, Virtualization

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    ethan4321
  • To explain number one a little better

    10 companies could buy 10 different servers because they need that capability some of the time, but most of the time those resources sit unused. These 10 companies could easily share one physical server and each would have their own virtual server.
    hamobu-22333136139518773481685514128812
  • Cloud computing gaining ground

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    -There is no longer a need for in-house personnel to manage your servers. IT department is no longer needed or can focus on other issues.
    -You don't have to worry about software and hardware updates (this is automatically done by your provider).
    -It is more flexible: because it is web-based, all users can access the system from anywhere, not just the office.
    -It is safe: regular data backups provided.

    We offer our CRM, intelecrm, on the cloud (http://www.intelestream.net/en/crm-cloud/) for all of these reasons."
    Intelestream
  • Nice

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    lawtonterri