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  • Foto van schrijverEdwin de Bruin

Monitor Performance while reducing power usage/ C02 Emission ? Yes we can!

Last week I had the privilege to attend to VMware Explore in Barcelona! A lot of awesome sessions, meeting friends, acquaintances and getting a beer (or two…or...)

During the trip one of the customers who accompanied us pointed out to me if we ever looked at power consumption and the possibility to reduce it. Personally it did cross my mind but to be honest most of the time we put everything in high performance to get the best performance possible. The world has changed, price of energy is going trough the roof and we all need to cut CO2 emissions.

And for some perspective.. There are notes in rooms to put out the light the save power while at the same time in the datacenter we burn power by putting hosts in maximum performance for the peak moments of the day. Food for thought.

In the VMware Explore session catalog my eye got caught on the session: NETB2242EUR How VMware IT Optimized Carbon Footprint in Datacenters Utilizing vRealize Operations.

I immediately rescheduled my sessions so I could attend, and I loved the session. Awesome ideas about reporting, special "green clusters", Idle VM's and their effect on powerconsumption etc. Not all I can implement right away but inspiring after all!

Inspired and finally the right amount of sleep at home something popped in my head. My GOTO performance tool still is SexiGraf and they do report the power consumption of every host. It can’t be that hard to convert the Watts to kWh and this to CO2 k/g emission. Something fast and easy to implement. Better start small than not start at all..step 1 start measuring to slap down those assumptions about we need maximum power!

Of course when I can graph this usage and emissions I would love show in this dashboard the CPU Utilization/demand, CPU Ready of the TOP x VM’s and real-time power usage so that when I start tweaking I can see the impact on performance and correlate

Well… I build something of a cool dashboard (In my opinion and with a little help of Raphael Schitz, co-founder of Sexigraf fiddling out the watt to kWh Graphite query).

So, what are we looking at?

Top left: Total power usage of the selected timeframe:

Top right: Total CO2 emissions in kg (based on emission factor of 0,649 kg C02 per kWh, source

Power usage and CO2 emission by per kWh in timeframe

And below that the real time power usage per host, CPU ready of the VM’s and total CPU Utilization of the cluster to monitor the performance impact

Now the questions remain:

  • Are these the performance counters to look at or do we need more? What would you like to add? Please let me know!

  • What do we save by tweaking? Well of course I immediately changed the Power Policy of one host to “Low Power” to see the impact.. result: none.. I guess the BIOS is not configured right so the policy does not affect. Something for another blog how to configure this right.

To download SexiGraf:

The dashboard in JSON: Cluster FullStats Power Usage
Download RAR • 3KB

Import is easy:

To import a dashboard click Import under the Dashboards icon in the side menu.

From here you can upload a dashboard JSON file, paste a dashboard URL or paste dashboard JSON text directly into the text area.


  • I created this dashboard on SexiGraf version 0.99h codename “Highway 17”. I think this will also work in older builds but of course you already have the latest build cause it’s awesome.

  • Main credits should go to the guys from SexiGraf, I just bolted on their awesome work!

Questions, remarks, need some help or got awesome results? Please contact me!

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1 Comment

Dec 19, 2023

Hi, awesome job.

Could you please reupload the dashboard json rar, it's a dead link :(

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