Here is a blog entry about a guy who thinks about green a lot and discusses his move to Amazon Web Services’s EC2. He discusses servers, green data centers, and how he saves 80% of his operating cost by moving to the cloud.
There has been a lot written about how much power is consumed by the computers that drive the Internet. A lot has been written about “green” data centers. But I think there’s a far more significant trend when, combined with more efficient computers and data centers, will make a 10x or greater reduction in power demand possible: cloud computing.
Data centers, brown or green are huge buildings — they are truly incredible places, with thousands of computers owned by multiple companies. I have negotiated the contracts for “co-location” in a number of data centers: you pay for floor space, bandwidth, and power and get a facility that has great connectivity, power that never goes out, and a carefully cooled environment for the computers. This blog, and most other websites are located at such data centers. Little sites like this one share a “slice” of a server with a number of others. Large sites like the ones we have at the Internet companies I have worked at have our own computers and other equipment “co-located” in data-centers.
Here is his bottom line.
The Virtual Green Cloud is Here
So look at cloud computing from an overall energy standpoint — we use about 80% less server power, thus need that much less cooling and that many fewer computers. Add virtualization and we use even fewer physical resources so the “embedded energy” of the hardware is even less.
The only losers in this whole new paradigm: the data centers (at least the ones who haven’t gone to cloud computing on their own) and the computer manufacturers.
Solar panels on the roof, more efficient cooling, and other “green data center” features are great improvements. But by enabling us to stop wasting power and resources our business, which is just one of many thousands like it, will save money and be green in a cloud computing environment.