Computer labs on campus consume considerable energy. Historically, lab computers (excluding monitors) have been powered on 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, regardless of usage. Adding to the energy use is the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) that is needed to offset the heat produced by the computers.

For many years, the College of Engineering (COE) IT group has been actively working to improve energy efficiency by developing tools to better manage the 14 COE computer labs and allow the 400+ workstations to sleep as much as possible. Benefits of the project include:

Power Savings

An estimated $8,000 a year in electricity costs are saved, just in the engineering computer labs. This does not include HVAC related savings. COE continues to improve this process, and hopes to soon share this technology with other units on campus.

Viewable Lab Usage

To enable better usage of the lab and reduce frustration for COE users, web pages were developed to show current usage. View lab computer status.

Metrics and Reporting

The software also tracks usage data, alllowing lab managers to plan for demand, adjust staffing and remotely wake computers as needed.

If you are interested in more information about these tools or want to explore how they can be used elsewhere on campus, please email support@engr.oregonstate.edu. Problems with the computers or feedback about the computers entering sleep mode can be sent to the same address.

computer lab tips for students, staff, and faculty

Return to main Greening IT page