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Storage departments are trying energy-saving technologies, but measuring ROI is still a challenge.|
BEFORE THE GREEN movement--before the IT industry was consumed with data center footprint designs, creative cooling techniques and granular metrics like the number of watts per enclosure per I/O--Nick Daffan had a storage problem.
Daffan, principal at Argus Information & Advisory Services LLC in White Plains, NY, watched his firm's storage needs skyrocket a few years ago. More customers, more reports and more precise computations were all fueling storage growth at Argus, which provides quantitative data to financial institutions for risk assessment and marketing purposes.
Daffan would love to say that energy conservation topped his list of concerns when shopping for a new storage system. However, he admits, his primary motivation was less noble: His hardware lease was due to expire and his No. 1 priority when evaluating vendors was performance and how much the system cost, not power use.
"It was before the energy crisis had spiked. We needed scalability and the ability to add capacity," explains Daffan. But he's certainly cognizant that "there's a cost associated with the space and power to run those technologies."
In what industry analysts and IT users agree is a common scenario, Argus' Daffan wound up getting a "green"
| investment as a bonus to a storage purchase he made primarily for performance reasons when he bought 16 Xiotech Corp. Emprise 5000 storage systems (each starting at $20,000)--systems Daffan says will continue to cut his power bills for years to come.
This was first published in October 2008