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Capstone Works, Inc. has been serving the Cedar Park area since 2001, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Are “Zombie” servers draining your precious resources?

Have you ever heard that loud fan whine noise coming from your server room? Is it your IT infrastructure hard at work helping you to increase profits or is the sound of the “zombie” servers? A zombie, or comatose, server is a physical server that is running but has no external communications or visibility and contributes no computer resources; it essentially consumes electricity but serves no useful purpose. For something you have most likely never heard of, it’s a big problem. An estimated one in three servers in North America falls into the "undead" category. Given those odds, it’s likely that most businesses are running servers that are no longer doing anything relevant and could be decommissioned.

IT is not only at the center of your organization’s operations, it is also a key line item in your budget. You certainly do not want to cut corners when budgeting for your IT needs, but are you wasting your money on equipment that is giving you no value whatsoever? Enter the nefarious “zombie” server. According to the Wall Street Journal, estimates show upwards of 10,000,000 unused servers remain plugged in and drawing power. The 4 Gigawatts of power consumed by these undead machines is equivalent to the “power from eight large power plants; power used by 3,200,000 households, roughly the number in New York City”.

But these zombies are not just a drain on your electric bill. There are a myriad of other costs you must consider. These include but are not limited to: cooling/heating, data center space (if applicable), network ports, SAN connections, backups, monitoring, operating system licensing, database licensing, maintenance agreements, administration, and support. In fact, according to the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative, the average cost to support a mid-tier server is $2,000 per year.

All business owners know that their IT needs change over time, as does their IT infrastructure. With changes in IT, sometimes no one is really clear what the server does. If an employee does know what a particular piece of equipment does and believe it can be decommissioned, they often do not do so out of fear—fear of creating downtime or interrupting something that may be relevant. In reality, many servers can be re-purposed, licenses may be put back into the pool, and physical parts and storage space can be reclaimed. The more servers you have and the more consolidation you've done means the more risk that this is an issue in your organization! Think about the efforts you go through to save a few hundred dollars here and there. You cannot afford to continue to overlook this potential drain on your resources. While you may realize now that identification and eradication of “zombies” are important, it could easily add up to many thousands of dollars even in a small business. If you don’t have the time nor the expertise to go through and audit your servers in search of zombies, you need to get Capstone Works on your side. As experts in the area of IT Cost Optimization we can not only identify where zombie servers are wasting your IT budget. We can help you to strategically procure or negotiate your complex IT infrastructure needs. Don’t let zombie servers feed on your wealth, contact Capstone Works today!

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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

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715 Discovery Blvd
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Cedar Park, Texas 78613