Are You Paying Too Much for Your Datacenter Space?

2014-03-17 20:11:17

Your datacenter space and power is a blank canvas you use to build and deliver your online products and services. Hosting Service Providers want to squeeze every bit of revenue they can out of that capacity. But how do you know if you are or what you should  be targeting? One place to start is to benchmark yourself against an industry leader like Rackspace.

Rackspace brings in close to $59MM/megawatt/year and is growing that number year on year. If you are at that level, then pat yourself on the back because you are doing really well. If not, then consider the following:

Server space utilization and efficiency.
Vendors like Dell, Supermicro and Quanta are blazing the trail for cost-effective, high-efficiency servers. Where possible use Multi-Node servers. This is where you integrate multiple servers on the same chassis, sharing the same power and cooling backplane.  An example would be the Twin2 from Supermicro or the C6220 from Dell. The Open Compute Project is also adding a lot of value there, but may not be ready for use by most small to medium Hosting Service Providers.

Component efficiency.
Look at using at using the most power-efficient equipment you can get for your budget. Platinum level power supplies, the latest CPUs from Intel® and AMD®, and SSD hard drives.

Power infrastructure. 
Are you on 208V or 110V power infrastructure? Most server power supplies are agnostic and will support both voltage levels, but they draw less current at the higher voltage. This translates to more efficient utilization of the datacenter space and power.  There is a great whitepaper by Neil Rasmussen from Schneider Electric – Data Center Science Center that explains this in more detail.
These optimizations may not sound like much on the surface but they add up quickly, saving you thousands of dollars annually. The less power used and heat generated per node, the more nodes you can put in a rack and the more revenue per rack per Watt per square foot.

At Tuangru we are passionate about helping customers navigate through these complexities and figure out the best combination of density, efficiency and computing power.

Ultimately these optimizations will help maximize your EBITDA, and may help postpone much larger capital expenditures in datacenter space.