Data Centers Getting Bigger—and Leaner

By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 09-03-2013 Email Print this article Print

With big data getting only bigger, there's no slowdown in the expansion of data-center operations for enterprises throughout the world, according to a recently released research from the Uptime Institute. The resulting "2013 Data Center Industry Survey" indicates that—while facilities continue to increase capacity—data centers remain relatively lean with respect to efficiency. In fact, few servers within the buildings are "comatose," or inactive to the point where they should be removed. Survey respondents also consider the reduction of energy consumption to be a top priority. However, a surprisingly high number of respondents do not monitor their sites' power usage effectiveness (PUE). That seems a bit paradoxical, given that PUE is often considered the industry-preferred metric for measuring infrastructure energy efficiency for data centers. Also of note: A number of CEOs and other heavyweight execs apparently give a collective shrug to the oversight of these facilities, as many organizations do not conduct any regular reporting to the C-Suite. An estimated 1,000 tech professionals, including CIOs, executives and managers, and facilities managers, took part in the research. For more about the survey, click here.

  • Ante Up

    36% of data center operators are seeing data-center budgets growing more than 10%.
    1-Ante Up
  • Storage Expansion

    Two-thirds of data-center operations have increased capacity by at least 1,000 kW during the last five years, and 17% have increased capacity by more than 10,000 kW.
    2-Storage Expansion
  • Top "Very Important" Considerations for Data Center Expansions

    Reliability: 66%, Up-front costs: 50%, Long-term costs and TCO: 47%, Energy efficiency: 33%, Speed of delivery: 22%
  • Peak Efficiency

    Two-thirds of respondents report that no more than 5% of their servers are "comatose," meaning they're inactive and can be shut down and removed from the data center.
    4-Peak Efficiency
  • Energy Conscious

    57% respondents say reducing data-center energy consumption is "very important."
    5-Energy Conscious
  • On the Watch, Part I

    76% of data centers have real-time environmental monitoring and alarming within an aggregated hall, or site-wide.
    6-On the Watch, Part I
  • On the Watch, Part II

    57% have power monitoring at the device or circuit level.
    7-On the Watch, Part II
  • Review Sessions

    55% have trending and analysis of historical operational data.
    8-Review Sessions
  • Allocated Resources

    44% conduct capacity planning for power, cooling and space.
    9-Allocated Resources
  • See No Evil …

    More than one-third of data-center operations do not measure power usage effectiveness.
    10-See No Evil …
  • Hear No Evil …

    Nearly 40% of enterprise data-center operations do not schedule any reporting to the C-Suite.
    11-Hear No Evil …
  • Deploying Public Clouds

    49% of data-center operations are either currently deploying or plan on deploying some form of public-cloud models.
    12-Deploying Public Clouds
  • Top Cloud Adoption Barriers

    Security: 45%, Skills: 13%, Cost: 7%
    13-Top Cloud Adoption Barriers
Dennis McCafferty is a freelance writer for Baseline Magazine.


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