White Paper: The Elephant in the Room is Lost Capacity

How your short term drivers erode your long term goals

In the world of economics, short-termism, the policy of concentrating on short-term profit at the expense of long term stability, is often cited as a key factor in the failure of businesses and generally thought of as bad practice. In the data center industry, are current practices driving operators unwittingly into short-termism? The majority of data center operators are making decisions relating to short term gains without the tools necessary to understand the long term effects of those decisions.

Without any visibility into the long term consequences of IT deployment choices and energy saving programs, proper cost/benefit analysis of the proposed changes cannot be performed. The cost of not achieving the full potential of a facility can be massive, increasing the real price paid to provide each kW of processing power by 100%, which often dwarves the short term benefits of many decisions. Without an understanding of the real long term costs, short-term drivers dominate the decision landscape resulting in large swathes of data center capacity lost to productive use, driving up the real price paid for that which is active.

This paper addresses the causes of lost capacity, analyses the real terms cost of under-utilized data center space with a worked example and proposes simulation as a way forward for data center operators to start reducing the effects. It is a consensus of opinion between a number of data center professionals in different areas of the industry; owner/operators, consultants and vendors, all of which agree that the real issue facing the modern data centers, the elephant in the room, is lost capacity.

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