Feeds

Ballmer deploys greenery in CeBIT charm offensive

How software can save the world

Intelligent flash storage arrays

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. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
What's that STINK? Rosetta probe shoves nose under comet's tail
Rotten eggs, horse dung and almonds – yuck
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Kip Thorne explains how he created the black hole for Interstellar
Movie special effects project spawns academic papers on gravitational lensing
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
LONG ARM of the SAUR: Brachially gifted dino bone conundrum solved
Deinocheirus mirificus was a bit of a knuckle dragger
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.