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January 8, 2009

Raritan powers energy saving targets

Could better understanding mean cost reduction?

By Jason Stamper

New software from server power management supplier Raritan Inc could provide IT shops with all they need to build a clear picture of energy use within their data centres and remote server estates.

By bolting in additional reporting and analytics features to its Power IQ energy management software, Raritan claims its upgraded system would help IT staffs save energy, improve server uptime and track fluxes in their carbon footprint.

Power IQ gathers and analyses device-level power information, in real
time, from servers plugged into intelligent power distribution units (PDUs).

Tracking and displaying power at the IT device level in this way is seen as one way of laying down the groundwork for improvements in capacity management and energy efficiency.

The cost and supply of energy are critical problems for corporate data centres and hosting companies, said Raritan’s James Cerwinsk.

The Raritan system is used to maintain an up-to-date repository of power information fed from multiple platforms, that lets operations managers assess consolidated views or specific details to examine all manner of power-related issues.

It can link to existing enterprise reporting and data warehouse systems through ODBC.

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Reports can be run to map energy use across an organisation, right from where the power enters a building, from the PDU, to the circuit breaker, branch circuit, or the data centre.

Power IQ 1.3 comes as hardware appliance or virtual appliance.

CBR Opinion

Despite rising energy costs and the need to make savings, many IT functions still do not have a handle on the power consumption of their server assets and few have any visibility of the electricity bill, which is usually handled by operations or the facilities management department.

Measurement is a necessary first step towards ‘green’ server estates and IT cost efficiency, and server farms and data centres are the big hitters. The consumption of energy used to power data centres in the US is said to have doubled from 2001 to 2006, climbing to 1.5% of all electricity used in the country.

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