New research from analysts at Gartner has revealed that energy-related costs now account for around 12% of overall data centre expenditure, a figure that is expected to increase in the next few years.
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The rise in expenditure on power and cooling will come as enterprises pump more investment into their infrastructure as the economic recovery takes hold, said Gartner.
Gartner predicts that as the need for organisations to aggressively manage their energy costs grows, data centre operatores will need to measure energy-related data across the whole site, not just in the IT equipment portfolio.
Continuous Power Utilisation Efficiency (PUE) readings will become the norm by 2015, it added.
"Operators struggle with the best place to measure the energy in their data centres," said Gartner research vice president Rakesh Kumar.
"What is needed is a breakdown of the ideal approach to data centre energy management into a pragmatic approach that will provide sufficient information for most operational planning purposes," he added.
Kumar recommended that operators should measure consumption in six key areas: building, electrical facilities, racks, hardware and virtualised machines.