For sustainable society


Dropbox announces data center efficiency

Now that you can do anything over the Internet using your PC or smartphone, do you know the infrastructure facilities that support such an IT environment? The answer is a facility that manages a large amount of IT equipment called a data center. Companies operate their services on the Internet by owning or borrowing their services. As of 2018, data centers account for more than 1% of the world’s electricity consumption, and without action, this proportion is expected to increase dramatically in proportion to global digitization.

In August, US IT company Dropbox, which provides online storage services, announced its sustainability goals to be achieved by 2030. The company has set four goals. It emphasizes the goal of reducing power consumption in the data center, for example, by using 100% of the electricity used by the company’s business with renewable energy.

Many large companies, including Google and Apple, are trying to convert their electricity usage into renewable energy. Both companies have already achieved 100% renewable energy business operation. The data center is a common electricity consuming place for IT companies. Inside the data center, many computers, communication devices, and cooling systems that reduce heat generation from machines operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. As a result, it consumes a large amount of power.

Dropbox has decided to invest in a recording system to save energy used by its US-owned data centers and servers operating in Australia, Germany and Japan. What is specifically done is to change the recording method of the hard disk that records data from the conventional PMR (perpendicular magnetic recording method) to the latest SMR (single magnetic recording method). By changing to SMR, it is possible to reduce the energy consumption while increasing the recording capacity of ever-increasing data.

The results of power efficiency achievements by these companies have also been published. According to the US Science magazine, the amount of computing done in data centers has increased by 550% between 2010 and 2018, while energy consumption has increased by only 6% during the same period. It’s called. It may seem like an endless race of increased internet connectivity and advances in storage technology, but at this moment it seems that IT companies are able to prevent the explosive increase in power usage. The convenience of the Internet becomes more comfortable day by day, but we, Internet users, may need to be aware that a huge amount of energy is consumed behind our activities at Interenet.

In addition to these technical efforts, Dropbox also support non-profit organizations working on climate change measures. They have already provided free cloud service licenses to more than 7,000 non-profit organizations, but they will continue to expand their support. They have also introduced a volunteer leave system to promote employees’ environmental efforts. Volunteer leave allows for 32 hours of volunteer activity each year. In addition, Dropbox will reduce wasted greenhouse gas emissions from older business practices by reducing business trips and expanding more efficient remote work.

Photo:Adobe stock

You may also like
Amazon has committed to meet the Paris Agreement 10 years early