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Everyone has a green angle these days, and if they don't, they can borrow someone else's. Consider Phil Nail, a green-minded entrepreneur who had the forethought to open a 100% solar-powered Web hosting company in southern California 12 years ago.

Nail's company, Affordable Internet Services Online (AISO), has a trademark slogan: "Web Hosting As Nature Intended." That gives its green-minded customers--the Organic Trade Association, Discovery Communications and Live Earth--a boost to their own green stories.

In turn, AISO.Net is a coveted customer for IT vendors creating their own green appeal. Nail is a showcase customer for his chosen vendors: IBM, NetApp, NextPhase Wireless and VMware. Nail's glad to do it, but he's busy these days with what he says is the industry's first "green roof" on a public data center. That's three to four inches of dirt that can reduce cooling by 50%, predicts Nail, and so far that story is all his own.

--Ellen O'Brien

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This was first published in October 2008

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