Green computing

Environmentally responsible computing - Minimising PC energy consumption

Image of Wind FarmAs part of the university's commitment to reducing its carbon footprint, a project is ongoing in Planning and Information to reduce and control the amount of energy used in running PCs.

A product called NightWatchman is being used to centrally manage the power state of staff and student PCs to minimise energy usage, coordinated with the necessary security update maintenance.

NightWatchman is helping to reduce average PC power costs from £30,000 each month to under £16,000, an average saving of over £14,000 each month.

When are PCs powered down?

Currently approximately 92% of staff computers and 99% of Student computers are being powered down.

Staff PCs are shutdown at 21:15 in academic buildings, where teaching takes place, and at 18:00 in other buildings. They are powered on between 05:25-06:00

Student PCs are woken up between 06:00-06:30 and are shutdown daily using the following schedule:

Aldham Robarts Centre 23:15
Aquinas Building 21:00
Art & Design Academy 21:00

Avril Robarts Centre


Byrom Street 3rd Floor IT Labs 20:00
Byrom Street Teaching Rooms 21:00
Dean Walters Building 21:00
Edge Lane  20:00 
Great Crosshall Street 21:00 
Haigh Building 18:00
Henry Cotton Building  21:00 
68 Hope Street 21:00 
IM Marsh LRC  23:00 
IM Marsh Teaching Rooms 21:00 
John Foster Building 21:00
Kingsway House 18:00
Marybone 18:00
Tithebarn Street Building 21:00

Future developments

Power management will be extended to all other PCs as soon as they are made capable of being controlled in this way, which requires them to be appropriately configured, necessitating visiting each machine.

Page last modified 20 April 2012.

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