Less is More
Green storage is not just about energy savings, but about reducing your data centre storage footprint and minimising the environmental impact of manufacturing data centre components at the factory level
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Despite strides forward in implementing green principles, Stephane Robineua, vice president, and general manager, Network Business Division Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise says that the Middle East is lagging behind the US and Europe in green uptake.
“Companies in the Middle East are looking at [green networking] on the basis of how much they need to pay from an energy standpoint,” he says.
The cost of greening Ecological awareness is usually secondary to price, functionality and usability when it comes to companies purchasing new storage products, however with green storage, the component parts are usually cheaper and run more efficiently than their less energy-efficient counterparts.
“Typically green products are not more expensive than non-green products. A lot of the vendors and manufacturers are now driving their products to be more space efficient because of technology improvements, so we are seeing that being taken into account when we design and build the products,” says Childs.
Teradata says that energy and space efficient storage technologies are actually no more expensive to incorporate into their products, and can offer sizable savings in other system costs such as packaging, cooling equipment and power infrastructure.
“One example of these storage technologies are smaller form factor hard disk drives which have lower power per unit of storage while enabling much denser packaging of storage thereby reducing system footprint. Another example is solid state drives [SSD] that provide even lower power per unit of storage, while their very high performance enables the elimination of the large numbers of hard disk drives normally needed for high speed data storage access,” states Dietz.
In the case of online versus offline storage, Tandberg Data says that the cost of using tape to store static and rarely accessed data is often very low as many companies already have tape hardware, so the real costs are extra tape media and the cost of implementing LTFS (Linear Tape File System) so that the tape device can be used and accessed like a hard drive.
“The truth is, the buy in for offline is not high, and so in addition to being green, it gives a very low cost option for implementing truly green storage in almost any IT environment,” according to Martin. Data analysis software tools that identify which data can be moved to offline storage can also be factored into costs as energy efficiency is not just about the hardware, but the software too. “We have a number of software products that we propose along with the hardware to make better use of the hardware technology and that I think is where the vendors can be cleverer than one another, by introducing a combination of products, particularly in data management and where you are moving data between different levels of efficiency and capacity and performance,” states Childs.
A Protection and Availability Storage (PAS) system can also dramatically reduce the cost of data management, allowing businesses to reuse hardware and architecture or delay or cancel their purchase entirely.
“Going green can save businesses money, rather than costing more for a solution. Green storage with PAS is a more efficient, more robust, more cost-effective, and more environmentally-friendly option than the market’s alternatives,” says Ashutosh. “We do see the majority of enterprise customers now looking very closely at the costing of storage purchases,” he adds.
Major benefits of using green storage
At the top of the priority list for companies is the cost of implementation when it comes to any new technology, and the good news is that green storage systems are cheaper to run, manage and implement, when compared to legacy counterparts.
“There is more automation around [green storage], so you will have systems in place that move data from one type of storage to another type of storage based on data usage. There is no point in having data that you are not using on the faster, more expensive disk drives, so we have complete tiering with solid state storage at the top, which is green in its own right, because it does not generate heat, and therefore uses less electricity and less cooling. We have started putting SSD’s into the storage alongside the magnetic drives,” Childs states.
PAS platforms reduce the data footprint and network bandwidth usage by as much as 90%, which enables businesses to dispense with or consolidate their backup server architecture, saving energy and cooling costs in their data centre. PAS is also designed to reduce the total cost of ownership of a company’s backup and protection scheme by up to 75% while strengthening the processes that protect the organisation.
Green storage can help a business save space and time, and most importantly, money.