Information Technology

The Data Center & Server Consolidation project is moving from planning to implementation, and project leaders recently reported to the Program Office on milestones and next steps.

The team completed an audit of 42 server rooms in 29 campus buildings, documenting over 2,300 servers and 25,000 square feet of server room space, and estimating that $1 million each year is spent on server power and associated cooling.

With tremendous collaboration across units, the group has already made solid progress in planning and conducting migrations. In each case, the project team works with the researchers and local IT staff to review the valuable research and work being done in the facilities and determine whether the equipment that supports that research and work is a candidate for consolidation, retirement, virtualization, the cloud, replacement, or migration to a more energy-efficient space. In many cases the services and incentives offered by the optimization effort have reduced the Principal Investigators' expenditures, freeing up funds for additional computing capabilities.

The efforts have made possible the decommissioning of about 150 servers in Chemistry, which enabled the shutdown of a 20-ton chiller, a 10-ton chiller, and opened up three former server rooms for repurposing. Work has also been underway in Biology, Physics, Art, Law, Engineering, the College of Public Health, and with individual researchers.

For the multi-year project to remain on track for its targeted completion in 2018, the team is developing funding requests for servers, network, and facilities upgrades, as well as for staffing to manage increasingly complex migrations and support of servers in the enterprise Information Technology Facility.