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Looking to improve partner margins while providing end customers with
opportunities to save power, Sun Microsystems is launching a new
"Eco" partner program.

The program, a component under the umbrella of Sun’s existing Advantage partner
program, provides Sun partners with tools, resources and training to build Eco
IT practices through assessments and implementations, thereby increasing their
margins while helping their customers trim their power bills by as much as 80
percent.

The program includes training and education for partners, assessment services
to evaluate data center energy use provided by the partner to the end customer,
"Eco-modeling," and ROI tools to help partners model savings
scenarios and implementation methodologies for putting the energy savings
proposals into practice.

"There is a whole sales methodology process we offer to partners as
well," said Bill Cate, Sun’s channel chief. Partners can offer the
services as packaged from Sun and sell them, or they can package them as part
of their own services and sell them as part of a larger set of services, Cate
said.

Click
here to read what Bill Cate has to say about Sun’s overall channel strategy.

Training will cover data center power, cooling, space and environmental
issues.  In addition, more specialized training will be available on
delivering consolidation and virtualization services to reduce customers’
operational costs, improve service quality and reduce overall carbon footprint,
Sun said. The training is free to partners, and Cate said the costs in
terms of time lost to employee training would average about $40,000, which
could be recovered in about two contracts.

According to EPA estimates, 61 billion kilowatt hours of electricity are used
in U.S. data centers
each year, representing about 1.5 percent of the total U.S.
power consumption and $4.5 billion in energy costs, said Dermot Duggan, Sun’s
director of Sun Eco Innovations Solutions. It’s the equivalent of what it
would take to power 5.8 million U.S.
households.

"Every time you go around the supermarket checking e-mail on your iPhone,
a tiny bit of power is consumed at a data center somewhere," Duggan said.

Sun has piloted the program in end-customer sites and has found an average of
60 percent power savings through it, Duggan said, and as much as 80 percent
power savings.

Other facts from Sun’s existing implementations: Customers realized an average
450 percent increase in computing power using half the servers they did before,
and they realized a 240 percent increase in storage capacity on a third of the
storage devices as they previously had installed, Duggan said.

Big power hogs in the data center include chillers, humidifiers and UPSes. The
chiller typically uses about 33 percent of the power, and the UPS
uses around 18 percent, Duggan said.  The IT equipment uses about 30
percent.  Fifty percent of the energy is wasted, Duggan said.

Sun said the program is designed for Sun partners that have SPARC-based server
customers, data center integration expertise and consulting capabilities. 
But any Sun customer is welcome to participate.