May 31, 2007

It's 11:30 PM. Do You Know What Your Servers Are Doing?

My guess is that your servers are still powered on, but probably not doing anything. I'm writing this post from my hotel room, after a nice dinner in downtown Minneapolis with my engineering team. After a relaxing, long weekend, I hopped a short flight up to the land of 10,000 lakes to spend some time with my engineering team in our Cassatt office in Mendota Heights, Minnesota.

Earlier in the afternoon, Jason showed me his latest updates to the Collage Reporting application. The Collage Reporting application collects statistics on how your managed servers and services are used and builds a data warehouse with this information. The Reporting application provides metering capabilities by delivering reports that detail:
  • Which resources (e.g., servers) are allocated to different applications or departments.
  • Utilization of these resources in CPU-hours.
These reports allow your IT department to charge the different lines of business for their actual usage of data center resources. Jason and I talked about some enhancements. What if you could enter the depreciation and operating cost (i.e., power and HVAC) of each server? Now, you get an actual operating cost for your business applications!

I'll provide more details (and a screen shot) in a future post. It's almost midnight in Central Time, and I think I'm going to call it a night...


LanceW said...

Hi Vinay, the reporting application sounds good. I would have thought that at 11:30pm at Mendota Heights all but the control nodes would have been powered down? ;)

Lance (

Vinay Pai said...

Lance, you are absolutely correct! In an environment managed by Collage, only the control nodes (servers) must remain powered on, since they are responsible for provisioning and managing the application nodes (servers). The application nodes will only be powered on when they're allocated to an application tier. Any application nodes that are unused will be in the free pool, and they will be powered off. Within Product Development, our application nodes are only powered on when they're being used, for development, testing or applications work.