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Cassatt: Power Down for Energy Savings

Turning off unused servers is an easy way to save on data center energy costs, according to Bill Coleman of Cassatt.

Sometimes the path to a greener data center happens in small steps that appear obvious but often are left undone. "It's your mother's old advice: 'Turn off the lights when you leave the room,'" said Bill Coleman, CEO of Cassatt and keynote speaker at the O'Reilly Velocity conference in Burlingame, Calif.

Except in this case, the room in question is a data center with hundreds or thousands of servers with blinking lights. Many of those lights represent mission-critical services, so just flipping a switch doesn't quite cut it. "There's this myth that you can't turn off servers," said Coleman. "This is easy, cheap and fast. The problem is figuring out which servers to turn off."

That's where Cassatt comes in. The company makes software to provide "active power management" for data center operators, allowing them to identify those idle servers. "At Cassatt we believe data center efficiency starts with a simple, intelligent approach to operating your servers