Recently, I visited a tech firm in Cambridge and was surprised to see that they had installed two very large chillers on each of two opposing walls in one of their data centers. But with the chillers blowing so loud and using so much energy, it is a wonder there was any left for the computers!

Increasingly companies are concerned about getting enough electricity in the building to cool their data centers –Stratus Technologies included.

IT staffers have to figure out how to get enough cooling into vast rooms of continually-heating computers. It is estimated that over ten percent of all energy is spent running computer. With larger data centers, it is almost as though you must pay twice: once to run them, and once to power their cooling units.

Companies with huge data centers, such as Google, have to constantly be researching better ways at keeping the temperature down, and have even made plans to build data centers on ships.

One of the biggest benefits to virtualization is it reduces the amount of electricity and cooling needed for data centers. The cost of cooling alone could pay for the virtualization technology.

How do you keep your data centers cool in the summer? Have you ever had the cooling units cause a power outage? Share your stories in the comments below!