Washington: Personal computers in offices can now save energy and money by "sleep-working," thanks to new software SleepServer developed by a team led by an Indian-origin American scientist.
Sleep-working enterprise PCs are accessible via remote connections and maintain their presence on voice over IP, instant messaging, and peer-to-peer networks even though the PCs are in low-power sleep mode.
SleepServer can reduce energy consumption on enterprise PCs previously running 24/7 by an average of 60 per cent, according to a new peer-reviewed study presented by University of California, San Diego, computer scientists on June 24 at the 2010 USENIX Annual Technical Conference in Boston.
SleepServer creates lightweight virtual images of sleeping PCs, and these pared down images maintain connectivity and respond to applications, such as Voice over IP, instant messaging and peer-to-peer services, on behalf of the sleeping PCs.
Each virtual PC image can also enable remote access to the sleeping PC it represents via protocols such as Remote Desktop, VNC and encrypted connections using SSH.
SleepServer is compatible with existing networking infrastructure. It is highly scalable, runs on commodity servers, and is cross platform - it works with Windows and different versions of Linux. A MAC OSx version is being developed.
Yuvraj Agarwal, the UC San Diego Research Scientist in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering who developed SleepServer, said: "One of the big benefits of SleepServer is configurable on-demand wakeup. SleepServer enables enterprise PCs to remain asleep for long periods of time while still maintaining the illusion of network connectivity and seamless availability."
Putting PCs to sleep that routinely run all night and all weekend saves energy and money.
Agarwal said, "Reducing the electricity required to run our information technology infrastructure is an absolute must, and our SleepServer technology is an important step in this direction. Our goal with SleepServer is to help buildings with heavy IT-loads reach net-zero energy use - so that these buildings effectively become carbon neutral by generating as much renewable energy as they consume."
He added: "I have seen an almost 70 percent energy savings on my PC over the last six months."
"According to our measurements, SleepServer provides $60 dollars of cost savings per PC on average over an entire year. By deploying SleepServer across the CSE Department, we expect to save approximately $60,000 dollars annually in direct energy costs alone," said Rajesh Gupta, Professor and Chair of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.