Top 5 Data Center Stories, Week of Sept. 29

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Are data centers “green” enough. The debate continued this week, sparked by a controversial story in the New York Times.

For your weekend reading, here’s a recap of five noteworthy stories that appeared on Data Center Knowledge this past week. Enjoy!

The New York Times Blasts “Cloud Factories” on Energy Use – It is telling that the New York Times, in today’s front-page story about the data center industry and its energy usage, begins with an anecdote from 2006. The Times describes a moment when Facebook engineers had to race to local retail stores to buy fans to prevent its servers from overheating. It’s the kind of anecdote most people in the industry have heard – but not in the last five years.

Google Provisions Wind Power in Oklahoma – In Oklahoma, when the wind comes sweepin’ down the plain, it will power Google’s servers. The giant Internet company today has cut a deal with a local utility to provide wind energy for the power grid supporting a large Google data center in Pryor, Oklahoma. The environmental group Greenpeace hailed the agreement as a model for how cloud computing firms can influence electric utilities to boost their use of renewable energy.

Report Sees 40 Percent Growth for Pre-Fab Data Centers - Shipments of containerized data centers are forecast to grow 40 percent in 2013 compared to 2012, following a near doubling of the market in 2012, according to a new report from IMS Research. Containerized solutions have been around since 2005, but IMS says it’s only in the last two years has the market for modular designs has begun to establish itself.

Key Internet Intersection Hits 2 Terabits of Traffic Per Second – How much data is flowing through the Internet’s largest pipes? One of the network’s major intersections is the DE-CIX Internet exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, which reported last week that it has reached a new data throughput record of 2 terabits per second. More than 480 Internet service providers from over 50 countries are currently connected to DE-CIX, where each day they exchange more than 12 petabyte of data – a volume corresponding to 2.7 million DVDs.

Microsoft’s Energy Practices in Quincy Under Fire – Is Microsoft reducing its data center energy usage because it’s the right thing to do for the environment and local communities, or only to save money? The company’s commitment to sustainability was challenged by a report Monday that it was prepared to waste tens of megawatts of electricity at its Quincy, Washington data center in order to reduce a potential fine from the local utility.

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About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor at large of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.