Feeds

Ballmer deploys greenery in CeBIT charm offensive

How software can save the world

Application security programs and practises

On his first trip to CeBIT in six years, Steve Ballmer is hoping to fix up Microsoft's somewhat tarnished image in Europe.

Tonight, he's at the official CeBIT opening ceremony along with European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso, French president Nicolas Sarkozy, and German chancellor Angela Merkel. Rumour has it he'll use the event to demo Microsoft's cool - though not exactly original - surface computing technology.

Today though, he's been trying to re-cast the Jolly Red(mond) Giant as a friend of both Europe and the environment.

Yes, it's true - Microsoft has discovered power saving. Paradoxically, but perhaps more profitably, it has also discovered that research into energy consumption needs an awful lot of clustered high-performance computing...

"To be more green, we need the scientific research that will power green energy," Ballmer declared. "We have formed an entire group at Microsoft to drive our product to be more suitable for scientific research."

He added that saving energy "is work for the software community as well as hardware," and cited numbers to show how machines running newer versions of Windows use less power than those still on older software.

For example, he claimed that Vista's idle mode consumes 33 times less power than XP's, while Windows Server 2008 is up to 40 per cent less power-hungry than Windows Server 2003.

Microsoft - which is currently building new data centres around the world - also wants to establish itself as an authority in the area of data centre design, said Ballmer.

"We try to be a pioneer in our own data centres," he said. "We are on a path to build some of the most power-efficient data centres in the world, 40% more efficient than a few years ago, and we think our Hyper-V virtualisation technology could take data centre power consumption down by another five times."

The company will now publish its best-practice advice on data centre design, covering areas such as site selection and space and power optimisation, he added.

Ballmer also touted Microsoft's partnership with German power supplier Yello Strom, which has developed a Windows CE-based electricity meter plus a Vista widget that lets householders monitor their power consumption on a PC.

It's not exactly home automation class stuff - to see how much power an appliance is using, you turn it off for a while and see how your total consumption changes. And it then relies on you changing your household's behaviour appropriately.

Still, the ability to track power use over time - hourly, say, or even month by month - has translated into savings of up to 10 per cent in trials, Ballmer said. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.