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Eficient Performance A Sunny Outlook for Energy-Efficient Performance

Eficient Performance A Sunny Outlook for Energy-Efficient Performance

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Published by readwriteweb
As a Canadian leader that cares for 1 million patients annually, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre faced rising demand for services—but its main data center was reaching capacity. By virtualizing on Intel® Xeon® processors and upgrading the data center’s cooling technology, Sunnybrook doubled the number of racks its data center can support and significantly reduced energy consumption. Sunnybrook saves tens of thousands of dollars each year on electricity costs and earned a one-time Data Centre Incentive Program (DCIP) incentive award of CAD 33,360 from its utility provider, Toronto Hydro Electric System Ltd.
As a Canadian leader that cares for 1 million patients annually, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre faced rising demand for services—but its main data center was reaching capacity. By virtualizing on Intel® Xeon® processors and upgrading the data center’s cooling technology, Sunnybrook doubled the number of racks its data center can support and significantly reduced energy consumption. Sunnybrook saves tens of thousands of dollars each year on electricity costs and earned a one-time Data Centre Incentive Program (DCIP) incentive award of CAD 33,360 from its utility provider, Toronto Hydro Electric System Ltd.

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Published by: readwriteweb on Oct 15, 2011
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A Sunny Outlook for Energy-
Efcient Performance
Sunnybrook cuts costs and meets density and power requirements with Intel® Xeon® processors
As a Canadian leader that cares for 1 million patients annually, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre faced rising demand forservices—but its main data center was reaching capacity. By virtualizing on Intel® Xeon® processors and upgrading the datacenter’s cooling technology, Sunnybrook doubled the number of racks its data center can support and significantly reducedenergy consumption. Sunnybrook saves tens of thousands of dollars each year on electricity costs and earned a one-time DataCentre Incentive Program (DCIP) incentive award of CAD 33,360 from its utility provider, Toronto Hydro Electric System Ltd.
CHALLENGES
Rising demand
. One of Canada’s most prestigious healthcare institutions, Sunnybrookdevelops and deploys a wide range of new healthcare applications.
Aging data center
. Sunnybrook’s lead data center was 20 years old, bursting at theseams, and unable to support the institution’s growing IT requirements.
Constrained budgets
. Canadian healthcare budgets are “very, very tight,” accordingto Oliver Tsai, Sunnybrook IT director. He needed cost-effective solutions that couldreduce operating costs.
SOLUTIONS
Energy-efficient Intel Xeon processors
. Sunnybrook virtualized on Dell PowerEdge*R710 servers powered by the Intel® Xeon® processor X5570 with 32 GB of RAM andVMware vSphere* 4. Now it is moving up to the six-core Intel® Xeon® processor X5670and 96 GB of RAM.
Power and cooling upgrade
. Sunnybrook added another uninterruptible power supply(UPS), replaced its heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) unit with AmericanPower Conversion (APC) InRow Cooling* technology, and reorganized its equipment.
IMPACT
Increased capacity and performance
. Sunnybrook achieves 30:1 virtual machine(VM) density across a range of applications and can fit twice as many racks in thedata center.
Better care
. Sunnybrook can deploy innovative applications that maximize itsinvestment in electronic health records and improve the way it handles vital taskssuch as managing patient records, coordinating referrals to specialists, and reducinginfections.
Lower energy consumption and cost
. The project reduced total energy demand by41.7 kW and annual electricity consumption by 267,158 kWh, saving approximatelyCAD 26,716 on Sunnybrook’s yearly electricity bill.
Energy incentive award
. Toronto Hydro issued Sunnybrook a one-time DCIP incentiveaward of CAD 33,360.
CASE STUDYIntel® Xeon® processor 5600 series
Enterprise ServerEnergy Efciency, Environment, and Performance
 
Virtualization
 
Meeting an Insatiable Demandwith Intel® Technologies andVirtualization
Based in Toronto, Ontario, Sunnybrookearned honors as one of Canada’sgreenest hospitals and mostenvironmentally friendly companies. Butgreen concerns aren’t what led Oliver Tsaito overhaul his agship data center andexpand Sunnybrook’s use of virtualizationwith the latest Intel Xeon processors.He needed the performance, density,and energy efciency to run the fast-growing set of applications that supportSunnybrook’s clinicians, researchers,and students, and deliver software as aservice (SaaS) applications to communityhospitals across the province.“The business demand for IT in healthcareis insatiable,” Tsai says. “Users are nolonger resisting technology—they’redemanding technology. We nd ourselvesdeveloping and delivering more and moresoftware, and we need the infrastructureto support that. Greening the data centeris great, but what drives our business inthe data center is compute: being able todeliver computing capacity in a very smallphysical footprint.”Tsai gets the performance and densityhis institution needs from virtualizingwith VMware software on thelatest Intel Xeon processors. “Intel’sprocessing power has gotten better andbetter and better,” he says. “Our abilityto consolidate more VMs on fewerphysical hosts has increased, not onlybecause of software advances, but alsobecause of Intel’s advances in multicoreperformance. The net result is thatwe’re able to pack a tremendous amountof compute into a very dense serverrack setup in our renovated data center.”
Intel and VMware Help SunnybrookCreate a Nimble Data Center
Sunnybrook consolidates 30 VMs ontoa single Intel® Xeon® processor 5500series-based server, and Tsai says thegure will go much higher with the IntelXeon processor 5600 series. The newerprocessor offers higher performance andmemory bandwidth, and the congurationSunnybrook is deploying provides 50percent more cores and three times thememory of Sunnybrook’s Intel Xeonprocessor 5500 series-based platforms.Besides adding servers based on the IntelXeon processor 5600 series, Sunnybrookis upgrading to VMware vSphere 4.1. Tsaisays Sunnybrook benets from the workIntel and VMware do to create synergiesbetween hardware and software. Thenewest VMware software uses the Intel®Advanced Encryption Standard NewInstructions (Intel® AES-NI) to improvedata security by accelerating encryptionand decryption performance. VMwareVMotion* works with Intel® VirtualizationTechnology (Intel® VT) FlexMigration tomove VMs between different generationsof Intel Xeon processors.“We heavily use VMotion and, as much asit sounds like a cliché, it really does makeus nimble,” says Tsai. “A hospital is nodifferent from any other business. Thebusiness is always redening prioritiesand coming up with new goals andobjectives. IT infrastructure needs to beexible and responsive to those changes.Today, we can adapt very quickly toachieve better resource allocation. Onlya few years ago it would have been likelifting mountains to be able to reallocateand redistribute resources so that yourenvironment is as optimized as possible.”
The Intel® Xeon® processor helps Sunnybrook savetens of thousands of dollars on electricity costs
“Our ability to consolidate morevirtual guests on fewer physicalhosts has increased, not onlybecause of software advancesbut because of Intel’s advancesin multicore performance. Thenet result is that we’re able topack a tremendous amountof compute power into a verydense server rack setup in ourrenovated data center.”
– Oliver Tsai Director of Information Technology Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre 

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