I attended SVLG's annual data center summit last Friday at the stunning IBM Almaden Research Center south of San Jose.
A pretty jam-packed agenda, with some customer case studies and three tracks of technical presentations and workshops. Facebook talked about their Prineville OR data center design, and the Stae of California described their data center consolidation efforts - trying to pull over four hundred data centers and server rooms run by all of the state agencies into a central DC outside of Sacramento.
(The stunner of that presentation was that the Department of Corrections was able to consolidate all of their IT workloads, formerly on hundreds and hundreds of servers in a 10k sq. ft. data center, into just three racks of equipment at the central site - a consolidation ratio of 100 to 1!)
The best workshop was one dedicated to thinking about how to extend the efficiency message to server rooms and closets - an issue I have been working on with the Natural Resources Defense Council.
I think utilities can offer three programs to address this market (virtualization/consolidation rebates, upstream incentives for EnergyStar servers, and an airflow management tune-up program for server rooms), but the true hurdle is how to engage service providers. Who can make a business out of doing energy efficiency projects in the two-and-a-half million server rooms in use in the US?