VMware optimizes Data Center energy usage

VMware announced the Carbon Avoidance Meter (CAM), to provide data center operators with near-real time “carbon scores” determined from the level of one’s carbon footprint and energy usage – and recommendations for reducing this footprint. The CAM bases carbon scores on telemetry data sent to VMware through VMware Skyline, a proactive support technology, in order to encourage energy reduction and inspire sustainable best practices for the industry.

VMware’s R&D organization developed CAM as a proof of concept through its internal product incubator, xLabs, which aims to take innovative projects through VMware’s product lifecycle and gives VMware employees a platform to bring ideas to life.

Most data centers today consume power from grids sourced with a mix of power generation sources such as coal, nuclear or wind. VMware customers who subscribe to VMware Skyline can use CAM to quantify the level of VM density and, if viable, recommend higher levels of virtualization density to further reduce energy use and carbon emissions. The meter will also enable customers to analyze their power consumption in near-real time and to understand what amount of carbon offset credits should be purchased, or what times of day workloads can be shifted to utilize more sustainable energy sources. With this information, customers can elect to consume power from a more sustainable source, or shift workloads to more sustainable power sources during off-hours.

The product represents another key step toward VMware’s ambitious 2020 sustainability goals and commitment to creating transformative technology to power a better future for the planet. In 2015, the company launched the VMware 2020 goals to reduce carbon emissions through energy efficiency efforts and procurement of renewable energy and carbon offsets, and to bridge the digital divide for businesses and non-profits. Beyond these ambitious goals for its own business practices, VMware also aims to incorporate sustainability features into future product releases, including CAM, to offer solutions that help customers positively impact the environment and society, as well as provide customers and partners with data that enable informed choices around cleaner technology.

“An increasing reliance on technologies such as mobile and cloud computing has led to significant energy generation from data centers. To mitigate their impact on the environment, companies need to assess their contributions to climate change and implement products and services that automate and optimize this process, thereby reducing energy outputs,” said Ray O’Farrell, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, VMware. “At VMware, we are committed to empowering our customers with the resources and tools they need to u­ltimately reduce environmental impact across our vast customer and partner ecosystem.”

Additional capabilities and features of CAM will include near-real time dynamic computation of load based on CPU types, load calculation of monitored systems and carbon footprint calculation based on consumption for the given geographies of the data centers.

CAM will be available to VMware Skyline customers later this year via the VMware Skyline Advisor, an innovative, proactive support service, developed in-house at VMware. The Skyline services bring high-performing technology and tools to VMware customers, providing proactive, predictive, and prescriptive recommendations that will ultimately help our customers improve overall stability and reliability of data center operations across the VMware portfolio of products and solutions. Adding CAM now allows customers to monitor their “carbon scores” as they proactively optimize their environment.


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