A ghost server, also known as a zombie server, is a server that is physically running but is not performing any useful function. Up to 30% of servers in a data center may be ghost servers.
Common Causes of Ghost Servers
- Deploying hardware at such a high rate that decommissioning older servers is a lower priority.
- Building out additional capacity in case it is needed for a new service.
- Migrating to the cloud but leaving old servers plugged in.
- Not having data on which servers are not being used or not knowing how to handle the problem.
How to Identify Ghost Servers
Ghost servers consume space, power, cooling, and cabling resources without providing any benefit. As such, they must be identified and eliminated to achieve optimal data center efficiency. And with the right tools, it’s easy.
By deploying outlet-metered intelligent rack PDUs and Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) software, you can quickly spot ghost servers and decommission them to free up valuable cabinet space that would be better utilized by more useful equipment.
In an easy-to-understand dashboard chart, you can see the power load of all your servers. This provides an at-a-glance view of which servers have stopped drawing power and can be eliminated or redeployed elsewhere.
Benefits of Decommissioning Ghost Servers
- Increased capacity. Eliminating ghost servers frees up rack space, power, cooling, and network connectivity that can be deployed elsewhere.
- Reduced energy costs. Ghost servers needlessly waste energy. Getting rid of them lowers energy consumption.
- Higher efficiency. By decommissioning ghost servers, you will be able to provide the same services and applications with less resources.
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