Here comes another case for moving to the cloud. This time it is not financial or business efficiency but a social imperative.. Yes, it is sustainability.
A joint white paper by Microsoft, Accenture and WSP informs that the traditional advantages of cloud also translates to environmental benefits too. The attributes that cloud service providers tend to do better are :
- Dynamic Provisioning
- Higher Infrastructure Utilization
- Improved Data center PUE
- Better Hardware lifecycle management
- Tailored hardware
- Efficient application codes & configurations
Another interesting find is about relationship between server utilization & power consumption. The figure shows that by increasing utilization from 5 to 20% gives 4 fold performance increase while the power increases by 10 to 20%. So this performance gain can be enjoyed by anybody operating their servers at this utilization range but the paper assumes that cloud service providers will have a better chance of operating most of the servers at this range.
Overall the paper is excellent when it comes to Service provider clouds. It uses three main Microsoft enterprise apps - Sharepoint, Exchange and Dynamics running on Microsoft cloud and on-premise as examples. You can download the paper here.
But the question is whether private clouds gives you the same environmental benefit? It may not because private cloud is operated in a different way than public cloud service providers. Let's wait & watch for a similar study from private cloud technology provider. Now there is another reason to move to cloud & that is good for our planet too..