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Collaboration Within Your Own Company

As discussed previously, green IT collaboration includes governments, IT vendors, electric utilities, and many other groups. However, collaboration is also needed among the different departments in your company. The Uptime Institute recommends that every data center look at the following five issues for both short- and long-term energy savings:

  • Server consolidation, configuration, virtualization
  • Enabling “power-save” features on servers
  • Turning off “dead” servers (no longer in use but running)
  • Pruning “bloatware” (the application efficiency issue)
  • Improving the site infrastructure energy-efficiency ratio

Typically, data centers can improve energy savings by 25 percent to 50 percent over a two-year period just by tackling each of these challenges in a cross-discipline way. The Institute has developed a multifunctional team methodology known as Integrated Critical Environment (ICE) to provide both the business and technical rigor required. A tried-and-true method not on the preceding list is to send an e-mail to all users announcing server shutdown for maintenance for a 24-hour period. Active server users rebel instantly with reasons why their servers can’t be shut down. If no angry responses result, shut them off indefinitely and then disconnect the servers. This frees up space, energy, and manpower.

In reexamining, retrofitting, and redesigning data centers, mitigating business risks are as important as energy savings. Such considerations are at the nerve center of every company, large or small. Active participation, support, and collaboration are required from five key individuals across the organization: representatives from the offices of the CFO, CIO, real estate and facilities, data center IT, and facilities managers, and the technical teams who deal with applications and IT solutions for your company.

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