North American Network Operators Group

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Re: rack power question

  • From: Justin M. Streiner
  • Date: Sun Mar 23 06:59:30 2008

On Sat, 22 Mar 2008, Patrick Giagnocavo wrote:

I am discussing with some investors the possible setup of new datacenter space.

Obviously we want to be able to fill a rack, and in order to do so, we need to provide enough power to each rack.

Right now we are in spreadsheet mode evaluating different scenarios.

Are there cases where more than 6000W per rack would be needed?

Is this just for servers, or could there be network gear in the racks as well? We normally deploy our 6509s with 6000W AC power supplies these days and and I do have some that can draw close to or over 3000W on a continuous basis. A fully populated 6513 with power hungry blades could eat 6000W.

It's been awhile since I've tumbled the numbers, but I think a 42U rack full of 1U servers or blade servers could chew through 6000W and still be hungry. Are you also taking into account a worst-case situation, i.e. everything in the rack powering on at the same time, such as after a power outage?

(We are not worried about cooling due to the special circumstances of the space.)

Would someone pay extra for > 7KW in a rack? What would be the maximum you could ever see yourself needing in order to power all 42U ?

I don't know what you mean by 'extra', but I'd imagine that if someone needs 7KW or more in a rack, then they'd be prepared to pay for the amount of juice they use. This also means deploying a metering/monitoring solution so you can track how much juice your colo customers use and bill them accordingly.

Power consumption, both direct (by the equipment itself) and indirect (cooling required to dissipate the heat generated by said equipment) is a big issue in data center environments these days. Cooling might not be an issue in your setup, but it is a big headache for most large enterprise/data center operators.