HID Global reduces power consumption and emissions through virtualization

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In the interest of sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR), HID Global Switzerland’s IT department recently set out to optimize its inventory of computers, servers and network equipment, thereby reducing power consumption as well as heat and noise emissions.

The solution involved virtualizing nine servers and eight workstations used as servers on two virtual hosts. Virtualization here refers to the operation of computers, servers or networks on an abstract and standardized layer, managed by a hypervisor as middleware between the hardware and software layers. This approach makes more flexible and efficient use of the hardware, meaning that less hardware is required to do the same job. As a result, heat and noise emissions are reduced, less storage space is required, and maintenance costs are lowered.

The old setup involved nine physical servers with a power consumption of 450W each and eight physical workstations with a power consumption of 300W each, with an average load of 40 percent. This setup was replaced with two servers with a power consumption of 900W each and an average load of 80 percent.

Power consumption was reduced from 22,600.8KWh to 12,614KWh, and there were also significant reductions in heat and noise emissions. The new setup takes up much less space – six 19 inch racks now compared to 65 19 inch racks previously – and virtualization means that a server can be restored almost instantly from an image in the event of a failure.

In total, electricity costs were reduced by 44 percent, a total saving per year of 1,247 EUR. In addition, hardware support and service costs were reduced by 88 percent when replacing the nine old servers with the two new servers, a total saving of 1,997 EUR.