– Clemens Pfeiffer, Chief Technology Officer, Power Assure, says:
More than half of all application downtime today is caused by power problems and that percentage is likely to increase as the electric grid struggles to meet a growing demand on an aging infrastructure.
Part of the reason power is now the primary cause of application downtime is the successful effort to minimize or eliminate IT failures by abstracting the application from the IT hardware using virtualization and other software-defined mechanisms.
These IT efforts on the abstraction of services, storage and networking have been combined to what’s called the Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC). The ability to define and, therefore, control something in software requires a layer of abstraction between the virtual (or logical) and the physical resources. SDDC holds enormous promise, but the problem is that it ignores power.
That void is being filled by Software-Defined Power, whose purpose is the same as that of the Software-Defined Data Center: to improve application availability by abstracting the application from its power dependencies. Software-Defined Power improves uptime by making it possible to shift the application workload to the data center currently experiencing the best availability, dependability and quality of power, thereby affording immunity from most problems on the electric grid and distribution inside and outside of the data center. This additional layer of intelligence and automation allows IT organizations to manage reliability issues by balancing applications across data centers through automation and dynamic adjustments based on service level requirements and variable application load levels.
Software-Defined Power solutions have three basic requirements: a layer of abstraction with the data center’s power infrastructure; real-time data about the energy market; and the ability to automate the many steps involved when shifting and shedding application workloads within and across data centers.
While the cost savings that result from avoiding application downtime are real and substantial, they are difficult to quantify. Fortunately, Software-Defined Power pays for itself entirely, and within a year, in three other ways: (1) significantly reduces the amount of energy data centers consume; (2) paying lower rates for most of those kilowatt-hours; and (3) potentially participating in lucrative Demand Response programs.
About Clemens Pfeiffer
Clemens Pfeiffer is the CTO of Power Assure and is a 25-year veteran of the software industry, where he has held leadership roles in process modeling and automation, software architecture and database design, and data center management and optimization technologies.