Monthly Archives: November 2012

Data Centres: Part Two

shutterstock_71238205The Environmental Effects

A New York Times article states the negative effects of data centres,

  • ‘Online companies typically run their facilities at maximum capacity around the clock, whatever the demand. As a result, data centres can waste 90% or more of the electricity they pull off the grid’
  • ‘To guard against a power failure, they further rely on banks of generators that emit diesel exhaust’
  • ‘On average, they were using only 6% – 12% of the electricity powering their servers to perform computations. The rest was essentially used to keep servers idling and ready in case of a surge in activity that could slow or crash their operations.’

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Data Centres

shutterstock_105784187Part One: The lowdown

Data centres have been around since the early years of the computer industry, and came into their own during the .com revolution. For those of you in the dark about the purpose of these centres, they are basically a room, or depending on how big the centre is, a warehouse dedicated to a company’s ICT infrastructure-  primarily the servers and storage equipment that houses all a company’s data and runs its application software. Many companies don’t have space on site for their servers, so they outsource them to a data centre run by a third party. Security measures surrounding such data centres are usually very robust, as are those methods used for maintaining a controlled climate, to limit the potential for computer systems to malfunction.

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