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The Harsh Facts of Green IT

Barely a day seems to by without either a vendor or a government official warning us of the perils of power-hungry servers and storage gear. But has all the talk of "green IT" and data centers powered by renewable energy sources clouded our view of what is really going on out in storageland?

The harsh reality is that, for all the talk of energy-saving storage technologies, many organizations are simply building bigger and bigger data centers -- a plan that could implode.

"Anyone who says that data centers are slowing down, just needs to look at the press again and see what is going on," said IDC analyst Vernon Turner at his firm's Green IT Forum in New York last week. "Microsoft and Google seem to be in a war to see who can get the most square feet in the world, and dominance in terms of data centers."

Google has already hit the headlines for its plans to build "green" data centers in Oklahoma and Iowa.

There may still not be enough space. The demands of modern data centers make the search for large-scale renewable energy a massive challenge. At the same time, there is a growing fear that before users have really got their heads around the issue of green servers and storage, they may find change forced upon them.

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