Why Facebook, Ebay Measure Power and Water Consumption in Their Data Center…$200M maybe?
Cloud services companies like Facebook and eBay have a vested interest in making their data centers as energy-efficient and water-efficient as possible, not just because it makes for a good public relations message but because they can’t scale operationally without these metrics in place.
Because measuring this sort of thing in a way that matters to the financial team or business division heads is still a pretty new concept, both companies were forced to develop their own measurement approaches to tease out the right information—both created management dashboards to express and visualize the data in ways that would help them make decisions.
eBay published the methodology behind its metric, called Digital Service Efficiency, in March 2013. Now, Facebook has published the best practices and source code behind similar frameworks that it uses to track both power consumption and water usage. (An example is in the image below.) It did this as part of the company’s Open Compute Project, under which it has shared the hardware and software designs for its data centers.