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Green Storage #5 – Drive type and speed choices affect your power requirements

- by David Garrels

We're working on updating our power calculator tools so that when you're considering HP disk arrays, you can identify the power trade-offs of selecting different drive types.  Of course, which drive type you choose depends on a lot of different factors - access time requirements, file/block size needs, etc. and your solution architect or channel partner can help you through that.  But power draw is something you should also consider. 

In general, slower spinning drives use less power.  For example**, a 400GB 10K RPM drive pulls ~8 watts while spinning idle.  A 450GB 15K RPM drive pulls ~12 watts.  That's a significant difference that gets multiplied over the number of drives in the cabinet.  An EVA4400 fully loaded with the 10K drive uses ~770 watts for drive power while the same EVA full of 15K drives will use ~1100 watts.

Again, you need to build the system that will support your application and enable your business goals.  As part of that, you may want to consider the power requirements of the drives you select.

We'd be interested in your feedback - is power draw something you think about when configuring your systems?   

**Note: all power measures are estimates and reference drive power only.  Controllers, fans, etc also consume power and need to be calculated in the overall system requirements.  Our updated power calculators on will include this.

Labels: green storage| Power
Anonymous | ‎08-19-2008 03:41 AM

Please provide a link in yopur article to these tools. Although I have not verified this specific case, saying they are at is not in general helpful, unless one has a bunch of free time to search for stuff...

DGarrels | ‎08-19-2008 07:27 AM

Good point about searching for stuff on…

The new eConfigurator site is at:  

You’ll see a link to the Power Calculators on the left hand side.  Remember, we’re just starting to populate with storage product, so you’ll see mostly Servers out there today.

Anonymous | ‎09-03-2008 10:10 PM

I live and work in FRANCE.

In the new configurator site, according to the proliant servers section, i don't find ML350 G5 , ML370 G5, DL360 G5, DL380 G5.

Thank you for your answer.

DGarrels | ‎09-04-2008 04:38 AM

Can you provide more info?  I've looked in the ProLiant Servers section of the configurator site mentioned above and all the products you mention are listed.  

They're also in the Power Calculators section linked on the left.

Thanks, David Garrels

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