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Techbuyer’s Ground-Breaking Server Research Published into World-Leading Academic Paper

Astrid Wynne, Techbuyer Sustainability Lead Jan 19, 2021

Today is a very exciting day for the Techbuyer team. Our research with the University of East London has been added to the world-leading academic publication, the IEEE Transactions on Sustainable Computing!

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers is the world’s largest technical professional organisation dedicated to advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. Contributing to a paper published by the IEEE is a great honour and means that our research findings have been peer-reviewed and approved by some of the best academics in the sector. 

You can read the full academic paper here.

What does the research reveal?

The IEEE paper investigates the slowdown of increased CPU efficiencies and how this impacts server trends. The traditional view has been that each successive generation of servers is more efficient – and therefore more environmentally friendly – than the last. It has also been widely accepted that regularly refreshing to new IT hardware can halve the energy bill, as well as the amount of servers being used, whilst increasing performance.

While this was true prior to 2015, this IEEE paper reveals this is not the case anymore. We are no longer getting the doubling of performance that we saw before and, at low utilisation, CPUs are actually becoming less efficient. The IEEE research also reveals that upgrading an immediate past generation with CPU and RAM can outperform the latest base configuration.

In other words, refreshing with the latest data centre equipment is not always the best option for today’s businesses.

Does this mean that I should always choose refurbished rather than new?

It depends what you need your data centre equipment to do. If you are carrying out high performance computing, you’ll always need the highest specification of the latest machine since this will outperform the highest specification of a previous machine. In other words, you’re using a sports car on a racetrack.

However, there are some workloads for which this will be massively inefficient. CPU trends show less efficiency at low power mode for later machines, which means that if you buy a high-powered machine and don’t use it, you are massively overspending on the electricity bill and on carbon. In other words, don’t use a sports car to drive to the supermarket.

How will this research help my organisation?

The IEEE paper is set to change the way that data centre managers think about server refreshes. As always, Techbuyer is here to discuss your specific IT requirements with you and generate the best new or refurbished IT solution for your business.

Techbuyer Group has also launched a new business, Interact. Interact analyses the energy efficiency of server configurations across multiple brands and generations using its one-of-a-kind software tool. The tool then produces previously unseen recommendations for your data centre infrastructure to reduce your carbon load and CO2 emissions, increase energy efficiency, and minimise costs.

The scientific research and data behind this tool is the same ground-breaking research that has been peer-reviewed and published in the IEEE. Find out more about Interact here.

Reaching Industry and Local News

Thank you to the publications who have shared the exciting news this month. Thomas Net, a US organisation that shares insightful business and industry news, is one of the organisations who shared the news on their site. Our team especially liked their series about how remanufactured products benefit today's businessesView the Thomas Net article here.

As a business founded in Harrogate, we were also pleased to see the IEEE research reach the Yorkshire Times, a voice for the north. View the Yorkshire Times article here.