Why We’re Sticking with Renewable Energy Credits (for Now)

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Tuesday, December 30th 2014 — Categories: Green Data Center

Bloomberg Businessweek posted an article this month about the seeming decline in popularity for Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) among large companies in the United States. Citing Walmart, Safeway, Hilton, and others, the piece claims RECs have little power to spur new renewable development and don’t really eliminate the carbon emissions that companies claim.

We’ve covered the What and Why of RECs here on the blog before. Basically, each REC stands as a record of one megawatt-hour of renewable energy added to the general pool traveling the electric grid. When a company or individual buys an REC, they claim credit for that green energy. The income stream from REC purchases travels through brokers and on to renewable energy development companies, who use the extra funds for new projects like wind farms or solar arrays.

Where RECs get tricky is when companies use them as part of their claims to be carbon-neutral, or as strictly a marketing trick. The Bloomberg piece makes this clear when it reports a Hilton VP as stating RECs weren’t “having a major marketing impact.”

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The 12 Days of Data Center Christmas

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Friday, December 19th 2014

As much as we’d like to see some lords a-leaping in our data center, they don’t have security clearance, so you might as well send them home. Here’s 12 Days of Data Center Christmas instead.

The 12 Days of Data Center Christmas

On the first day of Christmas, my SysAdmin gave to me
A new network topology…

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The Essentials of Big Data Analytics in the Cloud

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Wednesday, December 10th 2014 — Categories: Cloud Hosting, Cloud Hosting, Cloud Storage, VMware

Big data is driving new business insights and is hyped as a world-changer, as more and more devices are connected to the internet (Gartner predicts enterprise data growth of 800% between 2011 and 2015). Big data is the practice of locating patterns in enormous datasets to make better decisions. It enables intelligent decision-making across industries and applications.

Scalable cloud environments are great for big data platforms, but they come with their own set of planning and management concerns. In many big data environments, a hybrid solution may be the best fit. Let’s see what IT managers have to contend with to deliver the big data insights demanded by CIOs and CEOs.

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Your Colocation Location Can Make All the Difference

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Wednesday, December 3rd 2014 — Categories: Colocation , Colocation, Data Center Design, Green Data Center, Networking and Fiber

There are plenty of factors when sizing up colocation providers: available space, power configurations, efficiency, support services, networking, etc. But one aspect makes all the difference, with ripple effects on many of these other factors: location. Depending on your infrastructure demands, you might need a data center nearby for low latencies or far away for disaster recovery; in either case, the location can also impact power pricing, energy efficiency, and connectivity.

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Avoid Noisy, Nosy Cloud Neighbors: Secure Your Data in a Multitenant Cloud

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Wednesday, November 19th 2014 — Categories: Cloud Hosting, Hybrid Cloud, Cloud Hosting, Cloud Storage, Networking and Fiber, Security

Cloud computing is built on virtualization, a technology concept that allows multiple virtual machines to run on a single server. Although this means data centers can squeeze much more computing power out of each server, it also brings a set of additional security risks. Without insight into the other environments using the same server resources as your virtual machines, how can you protect your own data from malicious attacks on other tenants?

For some small businesses, the security risk associated with multitenant cloud is outweighed by the security gains of having the provider’s skilled information security specialists working on their environment, whereas they may have lacked a dedicated security staff in the past. However, other risks increase as virtual network tools and hypervisors present additional attack surfaces. 

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