When businesses talk about virtualization, they are often concerned with the financial savings that it can bring. When IT people talk about it, they usually laud its ability to do more with less space, fewer servers, and often less effort. In addition to those technical and financial savings, virtualization can also help conserve energy in our world that is increasingly in need of conservation.
Some of the energy conservation benefits include:
- decrease in the number of servers in a data center, thus decreasing the amount of electricity and waste heat
- lower cooling requirements for fewer servers
- smaller amount of land needed for data centers
Virtualization allows you to retire old servers that often had singular functionality and defer purchasing new servers to replace them. Instead, you can consolidate your applications and even run multiple distinct operating systems onto fewer machines. These fewer machines may run hotter and require more cooling, but they will ultimately use less overall power than multiple servers that are not being fully utilized.
Moreover, whenever a virtual machine is not being utilized or not run to its full potential, it consumes no additional power. This is drastically different than an under-utilized dedicated server that must still consume power and be cooled.
For more information about the energy saving benefits of virtualization, visit the Energy Star website.