Toolkit: Calculate Data Center Server Power Consumption

One of the biggest costs for any data center is power consumption. And although April 22 is Earth Day this year, it’s possible to reduce your carbon footprint and save money every day by choosing energy-efficient servers.

Buying a server is a long-term investment. It is not only the cost of hardware and software that matters, but also the power costs to make this server always available for users. Add a fleet of servers to a 24-hour data center and power costs add up quickly.

Download the full toolkit from ZDNet’s partner site, TechRepublic: Cost Comparison: Calculating Server Power Usage.

For example, a server might use between 500 and 1,200 watts per hour, according to Ehow.com. If the average usage is 850 watts per hour, multiplied by 24, that equals 20,400 watts per day or 20.4 kilowatts (kWh). Multiply that by 365 days per year for 7,446 kWh per year. According to the US Energy Information Administration (PDF), the average cost per kWh for commercial use from January 2012 to January 2013 was 9.83 cents. So that means it would cost $731.94 to power the aforementioned server for a year.

Add to that the fact that energy costs vary across the country, with some major metropolitan areas and remote locations like Hawaii costing up to three times the national average, and you can easily see why using the Server energy is so crucial to a company’s bottom line.

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Image: Screenshot by Teena Hammond/ZDNet

You can use the TechRepublic Toolkit to calculate server power consumption. It includes a spreadsheet that can help provide an average baseline of what you can expect to pay in energy costs for old/existing servers versus new servers. The list includes many common servers available today, with IBM, HP and Dell among those included, as well as Oracle, Fujitsu and Cisco.

Avoid common pitfalls in determining server power consumption and download the TechRepublic toolkit on Cost Comparison: Calculating Server Power Consumption. This toolkit is available free of charge to all TechRepublic Pro subscribers.

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