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Internet-scale distributed systems such as Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) operate hundreds of thousands of servers deployed in thousands of data center locations around the globe. Since, the energy costs of operating such a large IT infrastructure are a significant fraction of the total operating costs, the authors argue for redesigning CDNs to incorporate energy optimizations as a first-order principle. They propose techniques to turn off CDN servers during periods of low load while seeking to balance three key design goals: maximize energy reduction, minimize the impact on client-perceived service availability (SLAs), and limit the frequency of on-off server transitions to reduce wear-and-tear and its impact on hardware reliability.
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