Datacentre budgets ‘rising’ despite recession

Datacentre budgets will increase nearly seven percent this year, in spite of the tough recession, new research has found.

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Datacentre budgets will increase nearly seven percent this year, in spite of the tough recession, new research has found.

More than four out of five companies are planning datacentre expansions in the next 12 to 24 months, according to a survey of 300 senior-level IT decision makers at large US companies.

Space requirements for datacentres are growing 16 percent year on year, to an average of 21,000 square feet in 2009.

"One finding that may surprise people is that companies are increasing their datacentre budgets in 2009. This is a reflection of how firms view their datacentres as critical assets for increasing productivity while reducing costs," said Chris Crosby, senior VP at Digital Realty Trust, which conducted the survey.

The research comes on the heels of a study by the AFCOM Data Center Institute, which found a bleaker picture. AFCOM said budget cuts are forcing IT shops to shed older, more experienced workers, and that many datacentres are delaying or cancelling planned physical expansions and relocations.

Some 84 percent of firms are planning datacentre expansions in the next 12 to 24 months, and 64 percent of them plan to expand in two or more locations, the survey found. Datacentres account for 35 percent of IT budgets on average.

Digital Realty Trust also surveyed companies about power usage effectiveness, a Green Grid-devised measure that compares the total power used in a facility with the power devoted specifically to IT equipment.

A PUE of 2.0 would indicate that for every watt of power consumed by servers and other IT equipment, an additional watt is needed to cool and distribute power to these IT resources. A PUE of 3.0 indicates that two additional watts are needed to cool and distribute power.

A large majority of companies surveyed were measuring power usage. Four out of five reported PUE ratings of at least 2.0, and 26 percent reported PUE ratings of at least 3.0.

"Current facilities are not highly energy efficient," the Digital Realty Trust concluded.

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