Green IT and Cloud Solutions
One thing in life is certain – change – and the same applies to business. Achieving best results from your IT infrastructure means more than simply deploying new solutions; it means redefining IT as a versatile tool for business strategy which can adapt in response to changing demands.
To achieve this, businesses must pursue ‘big picture’ strategies including consolidation – reducing the number of servers required to support IT services – and virtualisation – reducing fault points and freeing services from physical constraints so they can be delivered in a more dynamic, virtual form.
Through consolidation and virtualisation, businesses can achieve a simpler, more scalable, more cost efficient IT infrastructure that aligns more flexibly with emerging business goals.
OPC is committed to reducing our carbon footprint and is embracing technologies that assist in achieving this for ourselves and for our clients. Our range of services include:
- Data centre management
- System performance monitoring and reporting
- Consolidation and virtualisation specialists
OPC can undertake an assessment of your current infrastructure and provide you with the expertise to develop a strategic plan of sustainability for your organisation
Data centre management
According to ComputerWeekly.com (21 April 2008), “roughly 2% of global carbon dioxide emissions are generated by the IT industry, according to Gartner research in September 2007. Worse still, 23% of that share could be blamed on the power needed to run and cool servers in data centres...”
Considerations and key benefits of having a green data centre:
- Space Saving – Ensure more efficient use of your data centre floor space with server, storage and rack consolidation
- Power Saving – Many datacentres are running out of power. New equipment, server, storage and networking products provide greater performance and use far less power than old, outdated equipment.
- Cooling Capacity – Data centres in years gone by allowed for 2-3kW cooling capacity. The heat density of today’s data centre has increased 10 fold and is way past what was ever envisaged with power and cooling representing more than 50% of the energy used.
System performance monitoring and reporting
Data centre monitoring and control is a critical element of maintaining maximum availability for your critical operations. Assessment of the infrastructure of your data centre, its critical load cooling requirements and identification of single points of failure are all required in order to determine the best power solutions. Once this is established, a range of monitoring options can be implemented from spot checking to continual activity logging, depending on your requirements.
Monitoring and control systems must be:
- Cost effective;
- Quickly deployed and implemented;
- Easy to use;
- Utilise intuitive alarming and escalation methodologies; and
- Provide robust reporting all from a central, secure, location.
Consideration needs to be given to heavy communication network loads and transit time constraints when designing Wide Area Network (WAN) systems in order to prevent communication issues. In addition, power outage contingencies must be incorporated early in the design.
System consolidation and virtualisation
Server consolidation has been a widely used strategy for many years. As servers have become more powerful, their ability to handle more services on a single piece of hardware has increased. This has been further enhanced by the introduction of multi-core processors a few years ago as servers with the same number of physical CPUs can handle even more work without increasing the licensing requirements.
Considerations and key benefits of consolidation and optimisation include:
- Reduced licensing costs
- Clustered databases that reduce downtime
- Ability to reassign redundant hardware to other tasks
- Identification of redundant hardware
- Reduced power and associated costs
- Increased operational efficiency and flexibility
- Less office space required
- Reduced business risks
- Overall business resilience
- Enables new forms of innovation
Virtualisation has revolutionised the way IT business systems are provisioned for everyday use. Industry statistics show that individual servers commonly use only 5-10% of the hardware resources provided by the underlying hardware leaving much of the processing power unused. Virtualisation allows for not one but many server workloads to work side by side on the same piece of hardware, providing benefits to business owners and organisations through lowering hardware costs and deployment timeframes, to expanding and improving high availability and disaster recovery techniques.
OPC can provide a detailed capacity planning assessment report as well as guidance on the implementation of an industry standard virtualisation solution that will provide you with the information necessary to make an informed decision for your organisation. Our experienced engineers can then provide the skills necessary to successfully implement any agreed virtualisation solution, ranging in vendors, from single server small business scenarios to large enterprise multi-host failover farms.