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GCN : November 2013
Three years after it was launched, the Fed- eral Data Center Consolidation Initiative is moving beyond metrics and zeroing in on technologies that are proven to drive down IT costs. Set up by then-federal CIO Vivek Kun- dra, the FDCCI aimed to curb data center proliferation, which had led to low usage of individual agency centers and runaway IT energy consumption across govern- ment. Today, the initiative s goals have evolved as agencies grapple with such questions as: What s the definition of a data center? How many data centers are there? And what s the di erence between a core data center and a non-core data center? These questions caused the Obama ad- ministration to keep shifting its goal for the initiative, which now plans to close 40 percent of non-core federal data centers by the end of fiscal 2014. Despite the moving targets, agencies that have embraced data center consoli- dation are now reporting significant sav- ings in IT capital expenditures, operating budgets, payroll and facilities costs. A shift to lowering overall data center costs has put the focus on shutting down large, most ine cient, IT energy guzzlers BY CAROLYN DUFFY MARSAN 1. CONSOLIDATE VOICE, DATA AND VIDEO ONTO ONE IP-BASED NETWORK Aging analog phone systems are money pits, due to maintenance costs, dedicated personnel and electricity needs. The Energy Department's Hanford site in Washington saved $8 million by purchasing a new Voice over IP phone system instead of a like-for- like replacement of its aging Lucent plain old telephone service. 2. VIRTUALIZE SERVERS In a 2012 report, the IRS said it saved $10.2 million in equipment costs over two years from virtualizing its servers, and expects an additional $1.3 million in annual savings as a result of lower electricity bills. The IRS said it could save another $7.7 million over the next ve years if it virtualizes all of its servers. 3. VIRTUALIZE DESKTOPS Desktop computers cost twice as much as thin clients, consume 80 percent more power and require signi cantly more help desk and other support services. DOE Hanford expects to save $40 million between now and 2019 by migrating its entire workforce to virtualized desktops and thin clients. 6 steps to data center savings CASHING IN ON CONSOLIDATION 28 GCN NOVEMBER 2013 • GCN.COM