Why use the SNIA Emerald™ Program?


What is the SNIA Emerald™ Program?

A core objective of the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) Emerald™ Program is to provide public access to storage system power usage and efficiency information through use of a well-defined testing procedure, and additional information related to system power. The measurement procedure, the SNIA Emerald™ Power Efficiency Measurement Specification, was developed and released, and is maintained by the Green Storage Technical Working Group under the guidance of the Green Storage Initiative of the SNIA. The SNIA Emerald Program includes these activities and programs: industry stakeholder meetings regarding test methods and storage architecture trends, research and analysis of test methods, research and analysis of test results, tester training, recognized tester program, whitepapers, and cross-industry collaboration.

As part of the core objective, the SNIA Emerald™ Program is focused on market recognition and adoption of its energy measurement specification. Through national bodies building programs with the use of the SNIA Emerald™Power Efficiency Measurement Specification, the industry can access vendor system specific test and measurement data to better predict system deployment energy usage characteristics prior to system purchase or acquisition. Although anyone can run the measurement specification, for results to be disseminated and adopted within the industry, published results must adhere to publishing body program requirements and the SNIA Emerald test methodology.

The SNIA Emerald™ Program does address concerns of IT equipment users of all kinds that wish to make their IT operations as energy efficient as possible. This priority can be driven by one or more of several requirements:

  • Rising energy costs have made power and cooling expenses a more significant percentage of total cost of ownership of server and storage equipment.
  • Some data centers are physically unable to add more power and cooling load, which means that new applications and data can only be brought on if old ones are retired or consolidated onto new, more efficient configurations.
  • Increased regulatory and societal pressures provide incentives for companies to lower their total energy footprints. For many companies, IT is a significant portion of overall energy consumption, and corporate Green goals can only be achieved by reducing IT’s energy needs or by making operations more efficient. 


Why use the SNIA Emerald™ Program?

…As a regulatory body?

The SNIA Emerald™ Program and its Power Efficiency Measurement Specification is based on proven industry understood and accepted test tools and methods for performance, workloads, and measurement. The SNIA Emerald™ Power Efficiency Measurement Specification V3.0.3 has been adopted by ISO as International Standard ISO/IEC 24091:2019. The methods have been validated as fair across vendor offerings and provide accurate data for regulatory body programs. SNIA will educate and advise regulatory bodies of the options, the pros and cons, best practices, and future technology trends. Ideally, vendors have one set test methods and tools to implement to satisfy multiple regulatory/regional bodies programs. This reduces the industry burden in test methodology formulation, testing lab efforts for global suppliers of technology, and test result evaluation and analysis by global enterprises.

…As an independent test lab?

The SNIA Emerald™Program provides the basic building block for regional regulatory bodies to implement programs.  The test tools and methods provide detailed information to further assist technology manufacturers in improving subsystem designs and in deriving optimal deployment configurations.  Train once, test many different vendor systems in different labs, consistently with confidence.

…As a vendor?

The SNIA Emerald™ Program, run by the SNIA Green Storage Initiative, strategic objectives are: to empower storage vendors to build better products, and to stimulate the IT community to more rapidly trust and deploy multi-vendor storage networking technology efficiently. In support, this program is the only non-profit organization that defines, standardizes, and promotes storage subsystem energy efficiency as its primary metric as well as disseminates objective, relevant and verifiable energy efficient data and related test tools to the storage industry and its customers. This program is designed to:

  • Provide a level playing field for test sponsors. 
  • Produce results that are powerful and yet simple to use. 
  • Provide value for engineers as well as IT consumers and solution integrators. 
  • Provide test results in an easy to run, audit/verify, and use manner. 

…As a consumer?

IT equipment users will seek advice on the most energy efficient approach to getting their work done. It is not practical for customers to test a wide range of storage products and architectures for themselves. A more effective approach is to create a collection of standard metrics that allow IT architects to objectively compare a range of possible solutions. This objective, metric-based approach has a dual impact:

  • Users can select the mode of storage usage that accomplishes their work objectives with the lowest overall energy consumption. 
  • Companies will be driven to innovate and compete in the development of energy efficient products as measured by the standard yardsticks. 
  • IT users can refernce regional regulatory programs for respositories of vendor product specific test results with the energy efficiency metrics.


About the SNIA

The Storage Networking Industry Association is a not-for-profit global organization, made up of member companies spanning the global storage market. SNIA’s mission is to lead the storage industry worldwide in developing and promoting standards, technologies, and educational services to empower organizations in the management of information. To this end, the SNIA is uniquely committed to delivering standards, education, and services that will propel open storage networking solutions into the broader market. For more information about SNIA, visit www.snia.org.