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VanRoekel: US Ahead of Schedule in Closing Data Centers

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Last year, the White House set a goal to close 800 data centers by the end of 2015. Today the federal chief information officer said it is ahead of schedule for reaching its goal.

Steven VanRoekel cited data center closures as means to “[cut] spending on wasteful, underutilized hardware, software and operations as well as enhance our cybersecurity; shrink our energy and real estate footprints; and take advantage of transformational technologies like cloud computing.”

VanRoekel, in a White House blog post, said the government’s goal is to close at least 40 percent of data centers. Agencies set a goal to close 215 data centers by the end of 2011, 545 by the end of 2012 and 1,080 by 2015.

While agencies are seeing savings, he said it is also important to focus on efficiency of the remaining data centers.

VanRoekel said the Census Bureau was a success story in this area, as it will avoid $1.7 million in annual operating costs starting in 2012. The agency working to improve current centers and reduce data center power consumption through virtualization and cloud computing technologies, he said.

Agencies are already assessing data center efficiencies and will focus on density over capacity and computing power to “deliver more bang for the buck,” VanRoekel said.

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