[Beowulf] RE: Capitalization Rates - How often should you replace a cluster? (resent - 1st sending wasn't posted ).

Joe Landman landman at scalableinformatics.com
Wed Jan 21 05:01:50 PST 2009

Mark Hahn wrote:
>> Think about it: if you pay 1/3 the cost of a new node per year in rent
>> and utilities,
> that seems amazingly high to me.  I don't have much sense for rent,
> but even if we ran our clusters on "retail" power rates it would only
> amount to 2.3% of purchase cost.  you could pretty easily argue that our 
> purchase prices are high, but even so still < 10%/year.  with your
> kind of costs, wouldn't it make sense to consider a colo site?  from
> a cursory grep of the web, it sounds like they're still substantially
> less than 33%...

Depends upon where they are, what they offer.  If Greg spends 
$3000/node, and his colo costs are $1000/year then this is $83.33 per 
month in site AND bandwidth charges.  Given that colo's price by GB per 
month, and Greg appears to be building a search engine with 2U boxes, it 
looks like he is actually getting a bit of a deal ... on space AND 
bandwidth ... in Silicon Valley.  Greg, this isn't the big downtown 
(fashionable) colo ... the one that had the outage a few years ago :(

Yes, we have seen pricing from $50-200/month per rack unit, with 
bandwidth of 2GB/month.  Additional bandwidth costs more.

So in 3 years, Greg has effectively bought a new node.

He could host all this himself, then he has rent, power, cooling, and 
bandwidth to pay for, not to mention more operator time, etc.  Costs 
come out similar, but on different budgets.  Colos turn this into an 
expense, other methods turn it into capital acquisition.

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Joseph Landman, Ph.D
Founder and CEO
Scalable Informatics LLC,
email: landman at scalableinformatics.com
web  : http://www.scalableinformatics.com
phone: +1 734 786 8423
fax  : +1 866 888 3112
cell : +1 734 612 4615

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