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Empowering Efficient IT

July 2010 - Posts

  • Windows 7 Deployment the 1E way - Part 1: Introduction

    This is the first in a series of blogs looking at the challenge that will be facing just about every organization over the next 12-24 months - migrating your existing desktop environment to Windows 7. 1E have been developing and implementing solutions to automate the deployment of new operating systems and the migration of existing desktop environments for over 7 years. This series will take you through the key stages of your deployment project and explain the cool tools, tips and tricks that we use to make the migration process as smooth and efficient as it can possibly be.

    OS Migration Utopia? 

    I think the Utopia for OS migration is a solution that is initiated either by a remote operator or the end user, and is then fully automated - backing up the user data and personality, deploying the corporate standard image along with all the right drivers, automatically determining and layering on the business and location specific applications and settings, applying all the latest updates and then restoring the user data and personality leaving the machine fully migrated and ready for the user to be productive. This should all be achieved with minimal time and effort from desktop operators, helpdesk support or even end users to initiate the process, with minimal down-time for the user, with minimal impact on the network and with the minimum amount of server infratructure as possible. With such a solution in place, actual migration of your desktop environment, no matter how large it is, becomes an effortless process that continues to provide cost savings every day when new joiners start, when workstations have to be replaced due to Hardware Refresh cycles and when workstations have to be rebuilt due to technical issues (break-fix).

    This Utopia is achievable - and this blog series will explain how! It obviously involves a fair bit of work up front, and involves a number of tools and technologies that you need to get your head around, but the effort upfront will make the deployment a breeze, not only for Windows 7 now but will also prepare you for the next wonder that Microsoft throws into the desktop arena.

    This series will cover the following topics

    • Tools for the job - With System Center Configuration Manager 2007 SP2 providing the foundation for the solution, we will introduce the tools and technolgies that are layered and integrated into the solution to provide a fully automated end-to-end migration process.
    • The perfect match? - How to identify and address hardware and software compatibility issues. 
    • Way to go - Bare-metal vs Refresh? What can be automated in a hardware refresh (replace) scenario? Factory build options?
    • Image is everything...or is it? - What should be included in the image? Is 'one-image-fits-all' possible? How do I maintain the image and get updates synchronised around the network? What about boot images?
    • In the driver seat - How do you ensure all your devices are going to work once your workstation has been migrated?
    • Layer cake - automating the layering of department-specific, location-specific and user-specific applications and configuration, including automatically upgrading a previously installed application to the latest version during the migration.
    • Split personality - extracting the bits you want to keep (data, settings and that picture of grandma) from your old XP system and putting them back in the right place under Windows 7
    • Putting it about - exploring the infrastructure and processes for getting your image, drivers, applications, updates and user data where they need to be
    • Help yourself – how to empower remote administrators, local operators and end users to manage migrations
    • Go forth and multiply - now you have all the bits in place - how are you going to actually pilot and then complete your migration?

    Come back next week to take a look at the tools and technologies that we will be using throughout this series.

     

  • Making Every Kilowatt Count, Virtually

    Virtualization seems to be getting a lot of bad press these days. With energy costs set to rise as demand outstrips supply, and carbon emission legislation looking more and more likely in the US, Virtualization was at first seen as a savior of hard pressed data centers who were near to capacity with no place to go.

    However at the recent Data Center Dynamics conference in San Francisco , several speakers voiced concerns over the usefulness of virtualization as demand for more and more server (and therefore energy) capacity shows no signs of abating.

    As Gary Brennen, co-CEO of data center construction company Syska Hennessy stated - "For our clients, virtualization was perceived as a solution to all the ills, but what we've seen over the past few years is not a slowdown in growth. If anything, we see companies asking how they can get more kilowatts -- today"

    Steven Press, executive director for data center facilities at health insurance giant Kaiser Permanente, agreed that virtualization is no panacea. "It's one of many tools we have to curtail growth and energy consumption, but I don't see it as the be-all and end-all."

    This recent trend for 'Virtualization Bashing‘ is starting to grate a little with me now. As VMware partners, 1E is firmly behind Virtualization as a key tool in the fight against ever expanding energy consumption in the Data Center. Like all great technologies, it just has to be managed well to avoid the pitfalls of inefficient implementation and management.

    In NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0 (NWSE) we've poured a lot of time and effort into providing even more ways of maintaining control over your Virtual Environment as well as the real world of physical servers in the Data Center.

    Take the Cloud for example. As more and more business applications migrate to the Cloud, the ability to monitor individual Virtual Servers becomes more pressing. In NWSE2.0 we've expended the 'Useful Work' analysis to Virtual Machines, so that you can see exactly which of those VMs is behaving badly. In a scenario where multiple customers using multiple virtual servers may be sharing the same physical server, energy use becomes more of an issue too. Previously NightWatchman used to monitor the power consumption of individual physical servers, which is great when you own all of the hardware, but is less useful in large co-hosting or chargeback setups. Addressing this concern, we can now monitor the power consumption of individual Virtual Machines so that you can identify and monitor the most power hungry and possibly even charge for VM usage based on energy consumption. This screen shot below shows you what you might see in the NWSE console.

     


    This new level of granularity of reporting and control is proving to be a big hit with customers. With the ever increasing demand for more and more of everything in the Data center, every Kilowatt counts, and NightWatchman Server Edition can make sure that those kilowatts are reliably accounted for.

  • NightWatchman, the Low Calorie approach to PC Power Management

    An amusing new piece came across my desk yesterday thanks to 1E's Dave Fuller. Here in the UK, the Cotswold District Council has decided that it can save around £3,000 per year by powering off their computers at night. Good start to the process you might think? Well here's where it goes a bit wacky.

    Green IT. Powered by... Chocolate? 

    The innovative guys over at Costwold Council decided to take the 'carrot and stick' approach and bribe the user with.... chocolate! For the princely sum of £50 the budding Knights of Green IT went out and purchased enough chocolate bars to ensure that users would never again leave their computers on a night.  The tasty chocolate treats were deposited on the desks of users who powered down their computers. As Ms Merritt from Cotswold Council said "We just wanted to do a 'thank you' gesture to the people who were making the efforts and to highlight to the others what the potential saving was. It's not an ongoing situation and it only happened twice."

    Now on the face of it this a quite a lightweight, amusing little story with a happy ending, but it does highlight the level of naivety that's out there when companies approach such projects. Leaving aside the cost in time of sending someone out to check which computers had been turned off, and then dropping the chocolate on the correct desks, in the real world we have found that this approach simply doesn't work.

    When we produced our 2009 PC Energy Report, we found that less than 3% of users powered down their computers 'because their boss told them to'. When companies try to change user behavior in this way, results are generally quite good...at first. I've seen poster campaigns, email reminder campaigns ( but never chocolate until now), and various other user incentive approaches, but they all fail, as users lapse into their old ways. It's human nature. Basically it would take a chocolate bar per user per day to even get close to maintaining useful power off results! I for one am a chocolate lover but even this would be too much..

    With NightWatchman however, success rates of 100% or very near, can be achieved in most workplaces. Automated solutions like NightWatchman take responsibility out of the hands of the users, while still ensuring that precious user data is saved, and that maximum savings achieved. In fact another UK District Council, Peterborough, deployed 1E's NightWatchman, and were so pleased with the results (which include a £50,000 pa saving) they allowed us to publish details of the project in a whitepaper here on the 1E website.

    I do applaud the guys at Cotswold District Council for taking an innovative approach to PC Power Management. However, I think that to achieve ongoing success may result in some serious chocolate consumption..

     

  • Waiting for an energy revolution? Technology has a big part to play

    ..I love it when I come across a well written, thought provoking blog.

    I was great then to read Kate Mackenzie's excellent piece on the Financial Times - Energysource blog - 'Why the tech revolution isn’t a template for an energy revolution'. There are some great comments on there too so it's obviously struck a chord with others aside from myself.

    The essence of Kate's piece is that despite the massive leaps and bounds of the IT industry both in hardware and software design, the same advances in technology can't be brought to bear and expected to achieve the same results in the world of energy. She quote various eminent sources, among them Shell chief exec Peter Voser who stated:

    Our industry is very different from, say, the consumer electronics industry.

    A mobile phone company may have 18 months to develop and market a new mobile phone, if it wants to beat the competition.

    In the energy sector, the scale of investments and new projects is massive, and “18 months” feels more like “18 minutes”.

    We’ve researched all of the current energy types and found that in the twentieth century, it took 30 years for new energy types to capture 1% of the market.

    For instance, biofuels are reaching their 1% share of the oil market around now, which is equivalent to 0.5% of total energy. Wind could do so by the middle of this decade, . . . roughly three decades after the first large wind parks were built in Denmark and the United States, and thanks also to the huge effort made here in China to deploy wind capacity.

    Now although I do broadly agree with the bones of the article, and it's well worth a read, I can't help feeling that it's a little unbalanced. In simple terms, perhaps the statement that I disagree with the most is the following - 'the idea that the great leaps made by IT and networking technologies in the past decade can be easily transferred to the looming energy challenge is shallow and misleading’

    The point that I think is being missed here (and it's quite a big point) is the role that technology has to play in making efficient use of existing energy sources while new ones are developed. I think it would be naive and somewhat arrogant of humankind to expect to be able to simply throw enough money and/or technology at the looming energy crisis in order to fix it. What is overlooked in the article, while being vital to the bigger picture here, is that technology can (and is) being used in thousands of ways to reduce existing energy use. In the short term, I think that this is the correct place to focus the efforts of the multitude of tech companies like 1E  who have focussed on reducing energy use. Think of how efficient our cars are now compared to just 20 years ago, and look at how technology in computer monitors is reducing power usage with each generation.

    We can't wean ourselves off oil, gas an coal overnight, nor can we expect another magic energy source to come along and make that possible overnight, or even in the next 20 years perhaps. What we can, and are doing in so many ways is attempting to mitigate the effects of our oil-driven lives, and use IT as an enabler of a low carbon economy for the immediate future. As an example, here at 1E, which is a relatively small player in the great cheme of things, we have helped some of the largest companies in the world to reduce their energy dependance by millions of Megawatts, and saved millions of tons of carbon emissions in the process. Of course we also need to change our habits drastically. In the US for example, 70% of oil consumption is used in transporting stuff - that is ourselves, and the things we eat and buy.

    So while I do recognise that the massive advances in technology can't be magically reproduced in the search for solutions to the energy problems that we face, I think that we need to recognise the enormous challenge and role that technology has to play in making sure that the planet is still in reasonable shape when we are ready to transition to a cleaner future. 

  • New Green Grid report consolidates PUE reporting progress

    As I've stated before, sometimes there just seems to be too many standards out there. So hats off to the Green Grid who have got together with some of the key players in the field of measuring Data Center efficiency to produce a new report. Aiming to simplify the complex task of measuring PUE in the Data Center, Green Grid has worked with 7x24 Exchange, ASHRAE, Silicon Valley Leadership Group, U.S. Department of Energy Save Energy Now Program, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR Program, United States Green Building Council, and Uptime Institute. The new report, entitled “Recommendations for Measuring and Reporting Overall Data Center Efficiency - Version 1 - Measuring PUE at Dedicated Data Centers,” contains recommendations from all of the above organisations.

    Generally speaking the report does the following:

    Provides guidance on how to calculate PUE from weighted energy types, based on source energy
    Outlines four recommended measurement categories for PUE, as a subset of The Green Grid’s measurement methods
    Provides guidance for renewable energy sources, combined heat and power plants, and reuse of data center energy

    Simple, effective, and a good start. I like the way that the Green Grid work to get stuff released and straight onto the next version - which in this case will cover mixed use buildings alongside the dedicated Data Centers covered in this version 1 report.

    Download the full report here

    Read the press release here

     

     

     

  • ConfigMgr OSD: Always including certain files in your Boot Images -think Trace32

    How many times have you needed to use Trace32 to troubleshoot an OSD deployment especially when running under WinPE?  Sometimes you could just map a network drive to a share and run it but maybe the network drivers didn’t get included or that just takes extra time that you probably don’t have (i.e. not being very IT Efficient).

    Wouldn’t it be nice if it was always available in any Boot Image you created without having to remember to include it every time you (or someone else) created a new Boot Image?  The following is a method that I always use to include Trace32, as well as other utilities that I commonly use:

    First, locate a file called osdinjection.xml on the system where you have the ConfigMgr Admin console installed and the one you create Boot Images and open it with Notepad.  It will be located in the ConfigMgr installation directory\bin\i386.  This file controls which files get injected into the WinPE Boot Images.  There is a section for each platform.  However, the two common platforms are x86 <Architecture imgArch=”i386”> and x64 <Architecture imgArch=”x64”>.  Underneath each of these sections, there will be a section for the two different source file lists – one for WAIK and the other for SCCM.  I add my additions under the SCCM section.  So, for including Trace32, you would add the following under the i386-SCCM section:

          <File name="Trace32.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>windows\system32</Destination>
          </File>

    Make sure to include it before the closing file list tag </Filelist> and save the file.  Also, it is a good idea to make a backup of this file before editing it just in case something happens to the formatting or a tag accidentally gets deleted.  If the file gets corrupt, then all future Boot Images creations will fail.

    Next, copy Trace32.exe into the directory where ConfigMgr will be looking for it.  This will be located in the ConfigMgr installation directory\OSD\bin\i386 directory.  And that is it – the next x86 Boot Image that is created will have Trace32 on it.  I have it going into the Windows\system32 directory in WinPE, as I do some automatic log opening for debug scenarios; however you can place it in any directory you like.

    Keep in mind for x64 Boot Images; you will need to use x64 executable files since there is not a WOW 32 bit subsystem in WinPE x64.  At one time, there was a copy of Trace64 that was floating around that could be used for x64 Boot Images.

    If you always want to include your company’s bmp in your Boot Images, simply rename it to winpe.bmp and copy it (replacing the existing winpe.bmp) into the ConfigMgr installation directory\OSD\bin\i386 directory.  Future upgrades and service packs may over write these files (including osdinjection.xml), so be sure to add it to your upgrade testing check list.

    Here is a list of the files that I add to all of my Boot Images:

    *********i386 section - place the following under imgArch="i386"
          <File name="NBCacheActions.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\i386</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="NomadPackageLocator.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\i386</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="NomadInstallSoftware.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\i386</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="GetPxeServerAddress.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\i386</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="TSEnv2.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\i386</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="Trace32.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>windows\system32</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="smsts.ini">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>windows</Destination>
          </File>

     *********x64 section - place the following under imgArch="x64"
          <File name="NBCacheActions.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\x64</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\x64</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="NomadPackageLocator.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\x64</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\x64</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="NomadInstallSoftware.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\x64</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\i386</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="GetPxeServerAddress.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\x64</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\i386</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="TSEnv2.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\x64</Source>
          <Destination>sms\bin\i386</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="Trace64.exe">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\x64</Source>
          <Destination>windows\system32</Destination>
          </File>
          <File name="smsts.ini">
          <LocaleNeeded>false</LocaleNeeded>
          <Source>bin\i386</Source>
          <Destination>windows</Destination>
          </File>

  • 1E Webinar: NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0

    Here's one NOT to miss.

    1E's Andy Dominey and Andy Hawkins present NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0

    This webinar will be packed full of information about the new features in NWSE 2.0, and how you can make the best use of them. Registration is easy (and free), just go to:

    https://www119.livemeeting.com/lrs/8000180417/Registration.aspx?pageName=6hd2tdqsz74ql1cj

    There are two sessions running each day on the 15th and 22nd July so no excuses - I will be asking questions !

    Enjoy

  • 1E Dynamic Duo discuss NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0 Release

    Here's one NOT to miss.

    1E's Andy Dominey and Andy Hawkins present NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0

    This webinar will be packed full of information about the new features in NWSE 2.0, and how you can make the best use of them. Registration is easy (and free), just go to:

    https://www119.livemeeting.com/lrs/8000180417/Registration.aspx?pageName=6hd2tdqsz74ql1cj

    There are two sessions running each day on the 15th and 22nd July so no excuses - I will be asking questions !

    Enjoy

    Posted Jul 15 2010, 03:55 AM by 1E Blogs
    Filed under:
  • Part 5: CSC on NightWatchman Server Edition Installation and Baselining (cont'd)

     
    With our 34 servers now collecting baseline data in the background, we proceeded to install the NightWatchmanServer Edition agent on 45 additional servers.   Through the installation process, the servers were requesting confirmation of the certificate exchange between CSC servers and the agent.  The server had a certificate, however, out-of-the-box, the agents did not.  Each different client has their own certificate and has to be issued per the certificate server.  The software supports client certificates however the agent installer was not configured to create the necessary registry keys. 1E wrote a custom install script to utilize client side certificates.  This new code was added to the new agent installer release.  

    We needed to begin ‘training’ the NightWatchmanServer Edition agent on what business processes constituted as useful work at CSC.  By default out-of-the-box, the agent considers some system administration activity as useful but it ispossible to streamline what is captured by the tool as useful, thus tailoring your reports and recommendations.  In our first pass, we left our baselines using the default list of administration processes with the goal of revisiting once our baseline was established.  This would allow us to create future processes where we would be able to do mass changes on multiple servers at a time in future installations based on our pilot research.

    With 79 servers now running the NightWatchman Server Edition agent, we began looking forward to our first set of reports.  This brought us back to our original concerns around the ITAR data restrictions CSC has on some of the servers in the pilot.  1E addressed this issue by writing custom reports removing the server name from the out-of-the-box report and replaced it with a server asset tag (fed into the database through the original code change done to our agent earlier on in the pilot).

    With reports now ready to go, next week we will share our preliminary results!

     

     

  • 1E in Sunday Times 2010 International Track 100 league table of top private companies

    Straight in at 91 with a bullet!

    Had to share this one with you, just because it makes me proud. Every year the UK's Sunday Times publishes it's lists of the fastest growing companies in various sectors. We've made it into the Tech Track 100 a couple of times in the past but this year is our first in the International group, and as you can se there are some serious performers in there. So well done everyone at 1E, and a big thanks to all of our friends and customers out there who support us each and every day. You know who you are.

     Here's the list: 2010 International Track 100 league table - UK

     

    BTW Anyone wants to hire me to write their Oscars acceptance speech - I'm available!

  • Most Data Center Servers Vastly Underutilized

    Great article over at Greener Computing recently. Great because is contains some fascinating feedback from real users, not Gartner, Forrester et all, but actual technology users..

    The piece focuses on the output of a recent meeting of Greening Greater Toronto back in May, and they have recently published their findings. The meeting took place among IT purchasers for private and public sector organizations at the Ontario Institute of Purchasing Management Association of Canada. You can get the full document over at http://www.greeninggreatertoronto.ca/pdf/GGT-Green-Exchange-IT-Summary.pdf but here are some key points.

    First up is PC Power Management

    Central-control solutions are more effective than user training to achieve energy savings.

    Purchasers who implemented employee training programs to have people turn off their machines at
    the end of the day reported highest penetration rates of 65 per cent, declining rapidly over time.

    In contrast, most organizations have focused on control solutions, where IT staff program computers
    to turn off on a timed cycle. This is often matched with settings to turn off monitors or put
    computers into sleep-modes after a certain period of inactivity (adjusted to suit user needs at each
    organization). Purchasers report almost no user resistance to these solutions and consider it part of
    a larger trend of centralizing control of individual computers over a network.

    This is something we have come up against many times over the years t 1E. Some companies seem to think that educating users is the way to go in achieving power management success. What we found however is that while relatively high levels of success can be achieved early on in a project, human nature dictates that we simply forget after a while. PC turn-off rates decline and savings are lost. So it's good to see that automated Power Management solutions like NightWatchman are finally becoming accepted as the way to go. It's only taken us 10 years...

    Next up is the Data Center, and it's interesting to read that this area is where participants can see the greatest potential savings:

    Huge opportunity exists to reduce energy use in data centres through better design and operation.


    Data centres are significant consumers of energy and a large focus of time and effort for those
    organizations that have them. It is also increasingly clear that there is much room for improved
    energy efficiency, with most servers operating at four per cent average utilization. This is a
    consequence of the biggest design priority being uptime and capacity..

    In utilization, this includes reducing the number of servers used, employing virtualization and
    switching from servers to mainframes. In housing, paying closer attention to the placement of
    thermostats and adding fans strategically to effectively circulate and mix air can generate huge
    energy savings.

    As I scanned through this report, this was the piece that leapt out at me. Servers running at four percent utilization? That's quite shocking don't you think!? Well for us it's not that surprising. This is what our customers are finding all over the world. Under used servers lead to a rash of virtualization projects which leads to... Virtual Sprawl and ultimately Virtual Stall. The savings are obviously there for the taking, but without some way of first identifying these underutilized servers and then tackling their lazy habits it's difficult for managers to take the plunge.

    With NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0 however we have not only tackled those initial findings of underused physical servers, but are not providing a way to manage the Virtual Servers that may replace them. To see how NWSE 2.0 can be used to make the most of potential savings in the data center we've created a neat little slide sequence to illustrate the steps you may take on the road to making the most of each and every server.

    So thanks to Greener Computing for highlighting this timely piece of feedback, take a look for yourself and you'll realise that you're not the only one looking for and deploying some great Grren IT projects!

     

     

     

  • Coming to the 1E Sponsored Ealing Tweetup?

    Well if you are going to be in or around West London tonight you should be!

    I have a good excuse, in that I live 250 miles away and have been shearing sheep all day, but other than that you should get yourself along there.

    Here are the details:

    Ealing TweetUp - The SocialITe, 8th July

    http://www.computerweekly.com/blogs/social-business/2010/07/ealing-tweetup.html

    Joining the Tweeting Classes of Ealing - Ealing Today, 1st July

    http://www.ealingtoday.co.uk/default.asp?section=info&page=evtweet001.htm

     

    1E are sponsoring the bar (of course) and it should be great evening, as it has been in the past, with attendance growing steadily.

     

    So what is a Tweetup? C'mon now, it's an event where folks who regularly twitter meet up for real.  Tweetup/meetup geddit? There will be lots of bloggers and PR peeps there and it's generally a great catchup and networking event. What a great way to spend a Summer evening..

     

    Have fun guys - wish I was coming along too!

     

  • Press Release: NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0

    NightWatchman® Server Edition 2.0 Targets Waste in Physical and Virtual Server Environments  

    Version Two of 1E’s Innovative Solution Combats Server Sprawl by Measuring and Reporting Server Efficiency, Maximizing the Value of Existing Servers 

    London & New York - 1E, a software and services company that improves IT efficiency by identifying and reducing costs and waste in hardware, software, energy and time, today announced its release of NightWatchman® Server Edition 2.0. 1E was recently selected by Microsoft as ISV/Software Solutions Innovation Partner of the Year for NightWatchman Server Edition, which also received the “Minister of Energy” award at the 2010 Green IT Awards.  

    NightWatchman Server Edition works to identify the $24.7 billion [£15 billion] of IT spend wasted each year on physical and virtual servers not doing any Useful Work™. As sprawlservers left on the network passively wasting energy and licenses doing no useful work—becomes one of the leading hidden costs of running servers, NightWatchman Server Edition relates energy use to business productivity, providing a new insight into the real value of each server.  

    “The benefits of virtualization are clear, yet a recent study we commissioned revealed 84% of Server Managers are concerned about or managing virtual sprawl. Using virtualization to deploy servers more quickly and easily often leads to greater demand and an increase in servers which are used briefly then left wasting resources, eroding savings from virtualization.” says Sumir Karayi, CEO of 1E.The financial and environmental benefits of using NightWatchman Server Edition to identify these servers and manage sprawl are impressive, especially when considering total cost of ownership in addition to energy costs. It fits perfectly with any IT Efficiency initiative. 

    Enhanced by 1E’s new partnership with VMware and existing relationship with Microsoft, NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0 quantifies the true business value provided from the energy and server resources used to run virtualized infrastructures. NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0’s central reporting identifies physical and virtual servers which are not providing any value, inefficient virtual hosts and power wasted by unproductive workloads. 1E’s Drowsy Server® technology makes server power management a dynamic and automatic function based on Useful Work.  A server placed in a low power state can still perform its necessary functions, but with an average saving of 12 percent in reduced energy.

     “We were so impressed with 1E’s ability to measure and report on our PC environment that we’re currently piloting NightWatchman Server Edition to similarly examine energy consumption, cost, efficiency and CO2 emissions in our data center. NightWatchman has saved us 40 percent in energy savings alone, and we’re encouraged by the early results of NightWatchman Server Edition to help CSC meet our sustainability objectives,” says John Glowacki, Corporate Vice President and Chief Technology Officer at CSC. Read more about CSC’s deployment of NightWatchman Server Edition here. 

    Deploying NightWatchman Server Edition makes servers more efficient, enables consolidation of redundant infrastructure and removes costs associated with operating and powering unnecessary hardware. It is a software only solution which is easy to install and supports multiple operating systems including Windows, Solaris and Linux (SUSE, Red Hat and Ubuntu). 

    “The effects of pervasive virtualization in the next generation data center are now taking effect in the IT market. By enhancing its capability to measure and report server efficiency in both physical and virtual environments, NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0 aims to address the growing concern over virtual server sprawl. We look forward to watching the market adopt this technology and demonstrate the benefits of greater flexibility in server power management,” says Jed Scaramella, senior research analyst in IDC's Datacenter and Enterprise Server group. NightWatchman Server Edition 2.0 will be generally available on July 16, 2010.

  • 1E CEO Sumir Karayi chats with Microsoft CVP Brad Anderson

    This is an interesting chat that our CEO Sumir had with Brad Anderson a while back. Talks about the relationship that we have with Microsoft, and goes on for a more detailed discussion on the importance of power management in enterprises and how 1E solutions, coupled with System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R3, can help large organizations save substantially on infrastructure costs.

    See the clip here: http://edge.technet.com/Media/Microsofts-Partnership-with-1E-Advances-in-Power-Management/

    Incidentally, 1E was recently named ISV/Software Solutions Innovation Partner of the Year - read all about that one here . It's great to see that level of recognition after working alongside Microsoft for the last 10 years to bring our solutions into customers alongside Microsoft's own Systems Management toolset. Long may it continue.

    Finally, for the techies among you, my old mate Ed Aldrich recently posted a great article on the 1E Tech Blog outlining just how our own Power Management solutions compare to the upcoming Microsoft Configuration Manager R3 release.

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