Aidan Tudehope, managing director of hosting at Macquarie Telecom, said during an industry roundtable last week that he believed electricity prices could rise by 40-50 per cent over the next three years. Certainly the introduction of a price in carbon is expected to significantly impact the input costs of data centres, so tools to keep track on what is happening inside them probably warrant investigation.
Most data centres measure their energy efficiency using power usage effectiveness (PUE) which calculates the total power supplied to the data centre divided by the amount of power used to actually run the computer systems. While 1 is the ideal, PUEs of 2 are typical – where of the $200 of electricity going into the facility, only $100 worth is used to actually power the computers – the remainder is spent on air conditioning, illumination – or inefficient design.
For enterprises paying data centre bills, having a more granular understanding of what’s going on under the hood is becoming increasingly important.
John Painter, who is currently working as a part time contractor with Optus, has set up Monitex to offer six or 12 month contracts to provide enterprises with data centre monitoring services. Three local data centre operators, including Harbour MSP are currently using the service, and Mr Painter said he hoped to sign Optus as a user in the future.
By taking data feeds from data centres using wireless sensors and then analysing those feeds Monitex can serve up customisable dashboards for data centre operators, or their customers, via any internet connected device including iOS and Android tablets, according to Mr Painter. It is also able to track actual performance against service level agreements and provide exception reports when those SLAs are not met.