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VPS power consumption

A CloudVPS Server will usually use significantly less energy compared to a physical server with similar resources. The reason for this is that power consuming hardware like power supply units and motherboards is used by multiple virtual servers.

We calculated below that a VPS 6 with 12G RAM and 480G harddisk uses about 67% less power than a comparable physical server.

The power savings increase when the VPS gets smaller. The reason for this is that the power consumption of a physical server does not get reduced quickly when its capacity decreases because a power supply, motherboard and harddisk always have to be powered. A VPS 4 with 4G RAM and 160G harddisk uses 87% less power than a comparable physical server for example.

The break-even-point, where there is no longer a difference between the power consumption of a virtual server and the comparable physical one is roughly around 64 Gig RAM and 4 harddisks with 900 Gig available harddisk after RAID. It turns out that a VPS smaller than that uses less power than a physical server. Above that a physical server is still more efficient.

Calculation

In the table below you can find our calculation. We have compared a VPS 4, 5 and 6 with a physical server that is comparable capacity wise.

First we measured the Ampere-usage of different Dell PowerEdge servers with hardware configurations that are comparable with the 3 physical servers.

Next we calculated the power usage of the virtual servers. For this we divided the power consumption of a VPS cluster in 3 distinct parts:

* The cluster nodes hosting the virtual servers.
* The SAN that contains the harddisk data.
* The Fibrechannel switches between the SAN and the server.

By multiplying the total usage for each component with the percentage of the usage one VPS is responsible for, the Ampere use of a single VPS 4, 5 or 6 can be calculated.

At the bottom of the table the total power consumption of a VPS is compared with the usage of the relevant physical server.

Compared Servers
Physical Server        
Dell PowerEdge R210II R210II R210II R210II
RAM 4G 8G 12G 64G
CPU Intel Xeon E3-1230, 4Cores Intel Xeon E3-1230, 4Cores Intel Xeon E3-1230, 4Cores Intel Xeon E3-1230, 4Cores
Harddisk 2 * 143G SAS (RAID 1) 2 * 300G SAS (RAID 1) 2 * 450G SAS (RAID 1) 4 * 450G SAS (RAID 1)
Ampere per server 0.55 0.6 0.65 0.75
Virtual Server        
VPS Type VPS4 VPS5 VPS6 Custom VPS
RAM 4 8 12 64
CPU 3 4 4 4
Harddisk 160 320 480 960
 
 
VPS Power Consumption
Cluster Server Nodes        
Ampere 0.75 0.75 0.75 0.75
width="200" Gig RAM allocatable 89.6 89.6 89.6 89.6
         
VPS RAM usage 4 8 12 64
VPS % of cluster server 4.5% 8.9% 13.4% 71.4%
Ampere per VPS 0.033 0.067 0.100 0.536
Storage        
Ampere per Storage Unit 6.5 6.5 6.5 6.5
Gig HD allocatable 30.800 30.800 30.800 30.800
         
VPS HD usage 160 320 480 960
VPS % of storage unit 0.5% 1.0% 1.6% 3.1%
Ampere per VPS 0.03 0.07 0.10 0.20
Switching        
Ampere per cluster 0.9 0.9 0.9 0.9
Number of virtual servers 193 96 64 32
         
VPS % 0.5% 1.0% 1.6% 3.1%
Ampere per VPS 0.005 0.009 0.014 0.028
Totaal        
Ampere per VPS 0.07 0.14 0.22 0.77
 
 
Results
Powerconsumption VPS        
Ampere 0.07 0.14 0.22 0.77
Powerconsumption Physical Server        
Ampere usage server 0.55 0.6 0.65 0.75
Ampere power saving VPS 0.48 0.46 0.43 -0.02
Percentage power saving 86.9% 76.0% 66.8% -2,2%

 

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