A recent report from IDC predicts that data center power and cooling costs will level off by 2014. For once, rather than blaming the economy, data center admins can thank the recession for the predicted cost plateau. As David Reinsel, group VP of Storage Systems at IDC puts it:
The interest and adoption in storage efficiency technologies continue to increase as IT managers are forced to store more data on fixed or declining budgets.
Due to mandatory budget squeezes during the downturn, the enterprise – and, thus, vendors – took a vested interest in ways to better utilize existing storage capacity. Don’t put those feet up just yet, Reinsel goes on to say that the plateau, while tangible, is also temporary. With data growth affecting everyone from Facebook to Apple to Wipro, capacity requirements will cause energy costs to rise once again. Thus, the enterprise will have to take advantage of technologies such as data deduplication, compression and thin provisioning. Further proof that companies are taking increased efficiency seriously? External storage shipments increased 38% and hard drive disk shipments increased 10% from 2008 to 2009.
The big guys are going to come out the big savers from this momentary lapse in cost increase or, as my dad likes to say, “Save more money the more you spend.” According to Reinsel, “Definitely the larger the data center, the more it has to gain from efficiency strategies. Cloud data centers also benefit directly from having the most efficient running data centers.” When budgets are tight, however, any amount of savings – whether it be in the form of budget dollars or server capacity – is significant.