Enterprise Servers

Data centers use an astounding 2 percent of the electricity in the United States.[1] Enterprise servers, in millions of data center spaces across the country, run the essential functions of business – email, storing critical information, managing databases, displaying web pages, etc.  Mostly thought of in the context of endless server racks in Costco-sized enterprise data centers, in actuality 40% of servers can be found in ubiquitous server closets and rooms found in almost every commercial building.[2]  In other words, like computers, the ENERGY STAR server savings opportunity can be realized by almost any organization with an office environment.  

ENERGY STAR certified servers come in the several form factors – blade, multi-node, rack-mounted, and pedestal – and offer the following energy saving features:

  • Efficient power supplies that limit power conversion losses and generate less waste heat, which reduces the need for excess air conditioning in the datacenter facility where they are housed;
  • Improved power quality which provides building-wide energy efficiency benefits;
  • Limits on idle power draw for one and two processor rack mounted or pedestal servers.
  • Disclosure of Server Efficiency Rating Tool (SERT) results to accommodate comparison of server efficiency under different usage scenarios.
  • Capabilities to measure real time power use, processor utilization, and air temperature, which improves manageability and lowers total cost of ownership;
  • Advanced power management features and efficient components to save energy across various operating states, including idle; and
See additional information on saving energy in data centesr through server virtualization, decommissioning, consolidation, and purchasing efficient servers. To read about other EPA data center initiatives, including case studies on ENERGY STAR certified data centers and the top 12 data center energy efficiency strategies, visit the ENERGY STAR Low Carbon IT page.

[1] “Growth in Data Center Electricity Use in 2005 to 2010”, Jonathan Koomey, 2011 www.analyticspress.com/datacenters.html

[2] “Data Center of the Future, “Michelle Bailey, IDC, April 2006.

Current Specification Effective Date:  June 17, 2019

The ENERGY STAR certified computer server product criteria requires that computer servers use more efficient power supplies, advanced power management features, real-time performance measurement, and lower energy consumption in both the active and idle states.

The criteria are tailored to each product type, including the number of processors and server type. In addition the idle energy consumption is reported and power management requirements exist. Power management is a key component of ENERGY STAR servers and should not be disabled to get the full energy efficiency value of the product.

For a complete description of the specification, please go to Computer Servers Version 3.0 Program Requirements.

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