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SPEC releases new SERT version and highlights international acceptance

Standardized tool for measuring server efficiency is mandatory part of U.S. EPA ENERGY STAR and has growing impact in Europe and Asia

GAINESVILLE, Va., January 30, 2018 — SPEC has released the latest version of its Server Efficiency Rating Tool (SERT) software suite and provided an update on its ongoing progress as a worldwide standard.

The SERT suite helps server vendors measure energy efficiency of single- and multi-node servers across a broad span of configurations. Version 2.0.1 of the suite includes GUI enhancements, the latest version of the PTDaemon tool for power analyzers and temperature sensors, and a single score metric.

Major part of critical effort

The SERT suite is emerging as a major part of server efficiency improvements worldwide.

Since its introduction five years ago, SERT testing has been a mandatory part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) ENERGY STAR for Computer Servers specification. SPEC is actively engaged in several international initiatives, working closely with the European Commission to add the SERT suite to the Ecodesign Directive for enterprise servers, collaborating with the Chinese National Institute of Standardization (CNIS), and working with the International Standards Organization (ISO) to include the SERT suite in the ISO/CD 21836 standard for server efficiency.

Importance in China

The Solution Department of Inspur, a SPEC Open Systems Group (OSG) Steering Committee member, described the importance of server efficiency and the SERT suite in China:

"The Chinese government is paying more and more attention to serversí computing and power efficiency within large datacenters. Government research shows that power accounts for more than 40 percent of the operational costs for most Chinese datacenters. Many cities have strict PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) requirements for newly built computing and datacenters. A new policy for the city government of Beijing, for example, will overrule any construction application for computing centers whose PUE is higher than 1.5."

"Power efficiency means not only environmental protection for China, but also energy security. The Chinese government has made sound energy conservation standards part of its '13th Five-Year Plan' (2016-2020). This directly raises power efficiency requirements for Chinese server and storage manufacturers."

"As a neutral third-party computing system evaluation organization, SPEC is the computing industry's most trustworthy benchmark provider. Within this context, the SERT suite receives a lot of attention as a vital tool for measuring server efficiency."

Key role in European Ecodesign Directive

Davide Polverini, policy officer in charge of implementing the Ecodesign Directive aimed at improving the environmental performance of energy-related products, acknowledges the importance of the SERT suite in Europe:

"Potential Ecodesign requirements for servers, both addressing energy efficiency and material efficiency aspects, are currently being analyzed in the European Union. The SERT suite has emerged as the most suitable test measurement for servers, and a SERT-based metric for the energy efficiency of these products has been developed in conjunction with industry stakeholders."

Bringing the parties together

"SPECís international membership collaborates to bring together the global server community focused on conserving energy," says Klaus-Dieter Lange, chair of the SPECpower committee that develops the SERT suite and the SPECpower_ssj2008 benchmark. "The SERT suite is designed to be used worldwide, enabling all server vendors to perform standardized testing. This helps vendors to concentrate on improving the energy efficiency of their servers, provides consistent metrics for national regulatory programs, and simplifies comparisons."

Available immediately

The SERT 2.0.1 suite is available for immediate download from SPEC for $2,800. Discounts are available for qualifying non-profit research and academic organizations. Current SERT suite licensees are eligible to receive a free upgrade.

The SERT suite requires a SPEC-accepted power analyzer and temperature sensor.

Visit the SPEC website for more information on the SERT suite.

About SPEC

In its 30th year, SPEC is a non-profit organization that establishes, maintains and endorses standardized benchmarks and tools to evaluate performance for the newest generation of computing systems. Its membership comprises more than 120 leading computer hardware and software vendors, educational institutions, research organizations, and government agencies worldwide.

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Media contact: Bob Cramblitt, Cramblitt & Company, 919-481-4599; info@cramco.com

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