Server Farming

Feb 19 2009   3:50PM GMT

TPC describes upcoming server power efficiency benchmark

Bridget Botelho Profile: Bridget Botelho

The Transaction Processing Performance Council (TPC) is preparing to release a new benchmark to measure server energy consumption, and detailed the benchmark in a video this week.

The TPC’s four active benchmarks are TPC-C and TPC-E for online transaction processing, TPC-H for decision support for ad hoc queries and TPC-App for business-to-business transactional Web services.

In November, the TPC announced plans to add an energy efficiency spec to its repretoir because power consumption is one of the top concerns of data center managers today, whereas performance and price were of utmost importance in prior years, according to Mike Nikolaiev, chair of TPC Energy who explains the new TPC spec in a YouTube video.

This new metric will give IT a way to measure price, performance and energy efficiency of a system. “It is very easy to have high performance and high energy, it is very difficult to sustain high performance and reduce energy. That is the call of the IT community today,” said Nikolaiev.

The new energy metric is performed while running other standard TPC benchmarks. It measures power consumption of the system at full load, and also measures power while the system is idle, Nikolaiev said in the video.

“With those parameters, IT managers wil be able to make more intelligent decisions and better utilize the energy in their data centers,” Nikolaiev said.

Similarly, the Warrenton, Va.-based Standard Performance Evaluation Corp. published the SPECpower-ssj2008 benchmark in December 2007 to compare server power consumption with performance.

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