I got an email today from the SNIA (Storage Networking Industry Association) announcing the availability of the SNIA Emerald™ Power Efficiency Measurement Specification. I have blogged about this in the past as something the industry definately needs to do: A standardized way to compare the power consumption of different vendor products.
I have seen many clients try and do this (normally with some sort of spreadsheet) but the power numbers that vendors release are often worst case or for fully blown configurations. For instance the DS8000 power usage numbers are for a fully configured machine (where every possible slot is populated). Most clients do not buy this configuration, so the power numbers appear far higher than they actually would be for the machine they purchased.
Even worse is that power consumption needs to be matched by relative performance. How much bang are you getting per watt of power consumed?
Now only HP and IBM have so far submitted results; and only for one product each. But it is a start and it shows that vendors are willing to participate and contribute. Lets hope the results table gets more results in quick order….
Check it out here:
For completeness, here is what the SNIA shared with me (everything below is from the SNIA and is not my own work):
The Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) Green Storage Initiative (GSI) has announced the availability of the SNIA Emerald™ Power Efficiency Measurement Specification which was developed collaboratively among more than 25 member companies. Additionally, the GSI announced the SNIA Emerald Program. In combination, the SNIA Emerald specification provides a vendor-neutral power efficiency test measurement set of methods and the SNIA Emerald Program provides an industry-wide repository of measured test data.
“The SNIA is proud to deliver the SNIA Emerald program to a global IT industry and national bodies concerned with energy efficiency,” said Leah Schoeb, chair of the SNIA Green Storage Initiative. “We are providing end-users and the industry at-large with a means to test, measure and evaluate storage systems power usage and efficiency, at a time when datacentre energy usage is projected to increase by 19% in 2012 according to Data Center Dynamics 2011 Census Report.”
The SNIA Emerald Power Efficiency Measurement Specification consists of the following elements:
Taxonomy: An industry-wide means of segmenting storage systems for products that span the range from consumer solutions to enterprise configurations which will be used to categorize the test results.
Test Methodology: A detailed and consistent means of testing various types of storage systems with load generators and power measurement instruments.
Test Metrics – Idle Measurement Test: The idle test applies to storage systems and components which are configured, powered up, connected to one or more hosts and capable of satisfying externally initiated, application-level initiated IO requests within normal response time constraints, but no such IO requests are being submitted.
Test Metrics – Active Measurement Test: Testing of storage products and components are said to be in an “active” state when they are processing externally initiated, application-level requests for data transfer between host(s) and the storage product(s).
The SNIA Emerald Program website will provide the industry with the resources needed to learn about, evaluate, test and submit storage system power usage and efficiency test results acquired by using the SNIA Emerald Power Efficiency Measurement Specification. The Program is available to the industry at large, with no requirements of membership. At time of public unveiling of the SNIA Emerald Program website, both SNIA GSI members HP and IBM have submitted test results for their respective storage systems commonly found deployed in data centers around the world. Storage system manufacturers and industry testing labs can download the SNIA Emerald Power Efficiency Measurement Specification from the SNIA Emerald website (www.sniaemerald.com). SNIA also recommends down loading SNIA Emerald User Guide that provides step-by-step guidance on how to setup a test and measurement environment for a storage system under test, and then submit measured test results to the SNIA Emerald Program. Once submitted test results are approved for public posting, manufacturers will obtain a SNIA Emerald Program logo to highlight their program participation. In turn, the industry at large can view the posted test results of various storage systems and review products that met and undergone the SNIA Emerald testing requirements. The specification and program test report do address disclosing configuration information for the system under test about energy-saving storage capacity optimizations that the system may have including features such as deduplication and thin provisioning.
Craig Scroggie, Chairman of SNIA ANZ commented “The program that SNIA has announced is the culmination of many years of collaboration between the industry manufacturers and represents a significant step forward in helping data centre managers and storage administrators get a consistent view of storage power consumption. Australia and New Zealand customers will benefit from this announcement and it is timely given the recent concerns over the impact of carbon tax legislation.”
Reference note 1: 2011 Data Center Industry Census