Green Speed: Storage Performance without pain
Carlos_Pratt 120000KDMY 1,159 Views
Why this Blog is called Green Speed
Let me first talk about cars: Like most people that like cars I put attention to at least two things: Mpg and raw performance.Other important aspect I like to observe is the power-to-weight ratio; this ratio really tells me how many HPs on an engine will be required to move certain weight. And this is directly related to the type of car and its overall performance, obviously a sports car will have a much different ratio than a haul truck!Some of my readers may remember the time when the muscle car was king, the power-to-weight ratios were huge, but I can say that the Mpg were horrible you could almost see the fuel gauge go from Full to Empty almost at the same time the speedometer went from 0 to 80 Miles per hour … OK, that is an exaggeration but I am sure you got the picture.
With the oil crisis of the 1970’s the fuel efficient car saw its golden days, sure the cars were not as powerful as the muscle cars but they were MUCH cheaper to run and much easier to park! And please don’t ask me about speed and power.If you noticed I said they were easier to park, why? Very simple they were smaller and lighter, this was done to maintain the same power-to-weight ratio with a smaller engine as a bigger family car. As many of you may agree with me, they took away the fun of the muscle car.
Let me jump to the 1990’s; bigger cars that were MUCH more efficient than their equivalents of two decades before had a huge hit. Hmmmm ... Did the evil powers of the small car invented the Hybrid?
Can we say that the automobile industry has been finding ways to better use the power generated by engines? … The simple answer is YES! And they will keep getting more efficient every year.
I could keep writing about cars but let’s now switch to my specialty, Storage Systems and their performance. Until recently each time that a company needed more storage it would just ask for more, their buyers would go out and buy it from IBM or any other vendor, get it and install it. Some times the last thing the IT people would think about was the amount of electric power needed. In the worst case was to add more power to the data center. Obviously the electric company would be more than happy to add power, it meant more money for them. This is what I call the muscle era of storage.In the recent years two factors have become very important for the IT industry (an issue for some): ENERGY CONSUMPTION and ENVIRONMENT CONSERVATION. Needless to say one is tied to the other by the heap.
Today we are entering the era of fuel efficient data centers … err not fuel, I meant energy … Can you see the analogy with cars? Will we see some reduction in Size of the data center? In my humble opinion absolutely! Actually we are already observing that phenomenon. On a later posting I will talk about smaller space better storage.Other very important factors are the impending regulations from the EPA and DOE. They have promised to release soon, very soon. Like cars, when a company buys a storage system they assume that performance will be there, let me repeat since this is important: It is assumed that it will always be there, regardless of the amount of energy (or gas in the car) you use.
So here is the reason I decided to call this Blog Green Speed: The original idea for the name wasn’t mine, it was suggested by one of my managers, when I was reading the suggestion I immediately related it to cars. Why? For the next reasons: Green implies conservation of the environment (i.e. Hybrid Cars), and Speed implies performance of the equipment (i.e. Muscle Cars).
Finally, if we can use less energy and have high end performance is a triple win:Win 1: The customer saves money, which directly affects their bottom lineWin 2: IBM gets to sale services and hardware.Win 3: The Environment is cleaner from the benefits of using energy more efficiently. Less soil pollution, Less COs into the air, etc……
Will I talk about the green on cars? maybe some time in the future.
Until next time
Ah! just in case you are interested on more green tech.I highly recommend the next web site:GReen IT report
Edit notes:April 17 2009: Some minor punctuation and composition corrections.April 20 2009: Added recommended website.
Blog Entry for April 2, 2009:
Finally I have decided tostart a Blog for an area that may seem already heavily discussed and that some peoplebelieve is controversial: Storage systems performance and their energyconsumption.
On occasion my comments willbe only about performance, mainly of what some people like to refer as externalstorage. No, I will not talk about the memory stick or the USB connected harddrive, I will focus on those systems that use multiple disks and somehow add layersof protection, extra function and yes HIGHER performance than the single disk.
For sure a subject I willfocus on many of my postings will be the usage of Energy by the storage units. Finally I will touch what has become one of my favorite topics, the crossroads of performance and energy utilization.
At this point and before I continue I need to thank some people for motivating me to start my blog and in noparticular order their names are here:
Barry has one of the blogs that I continually follow; I have also had the opportunity to share someexperiences with him I highly recommend his blog. You can find it here
Tony and I go back at least to 1999 when Linux was sniffing the waters of the mainframe and the storage was … moreprimitive. I have followed his Blog since it started and is one of themotivators for me to start this Blog. You can find his Blog here:
I also must thank Mary W. Ferguson and her team for making possible this Blog.
All of what I am posting here is MY OPINION and in no way represents the opinion or any official position orclaim of/from IBM.
My next posting will be about the name GREENSPEED and why I chose it.
Carlos Pratt[Read More]