Must-Know Data Center Metrics

Highlights: The Most Important Data Center Metrics

  • 1. Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE)
  • 2. Data Center Infrastructure Efficiency (DCiE)
  • 3. Carbon Usage Effectiveness (CUE)
  • 4. Water Usage Effectiveness (WUE)
  • 5. IT Load
  • 6. Data Center Capacity Utilization
  • 7. Server Utilization
  • 8. Storage Utilization
  • 9. Network Utilization
  • 10. Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF)
  • 11. Mean Time To Repair (MTTR)
  • 12. Data Center Downtime
  • 13. Data Center Availability
  • 14. Incident Response Time
  • 15. First-Time Fix Rate
  • 16. Annualized Failure Rate (AFR)
  • 17. Service Level Agreement (SLA) Compliance
  • 18. Cost per Transaction
  • 19. Energy Cost per Transaction
  • 20. Asset Lifecycle Management

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In today’s fast-paced digital landscape, data centers have become the backbone of our constantly evolving world. These technological powerhouses enable the seamless operation of countless businesses and keep our everyday lives intricately connected. However, as the demand for data storage, management, and processing continues to skyrocket, data center managers are faced with an urgent and complex challenge: optimizing their facilities’ efficiency and effectiveness to keep up with the exponential growth.

In this illuminating blog post, we will delve into the critical importance of data center metrics, shedding light on the essential key performance indicators (KPIs) that drive and shape the success of these indispensable facilities. From energy consumption and capacity utilization to infrastructure availability and environmental impact, our comprehensive exploration of data center metrics will empower IT professionals, data center operators, and businesses alike to make informed decisions and drive continuous improvement in this high-stakes industry.

Data Center Metrics You Should Know

1. Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE)

The ratio of total energy consumed by the data center to the energy consumed by IT equipment. A lower PUE indicates better efficiency.

2. Data Center Infrastructure Efficiency (DCiE)

The inverse of PUE, showing the proportion of energy used by IT equipment relative to total energy consumption. A higher DCiE indicates better efficiency.

3. Carbon Usage Effectiveness (CUE)

Measures the carbon emissions associated with the data center’s energy consumption, showing the data center’s environmental impact.

4. Water Usage Effectiveness (WUE)

Measures the amount of water used in cooling equipment and other systems in the data center, highlighting the water efficiency of the facility.

5. IT Load

The total power consumed by IT equipment, including servers, storage, and networking devices.

6. Data Center Capacity Utilization

The percentage of used computing resources compared to the maximum available resources, indicating how effectively the data center resources are being utilized.

7. Server Utilization

The average percentage of server resources being used at any given time. Higher server utilization can result in better overall efficiency.

8. Storage Utilization

The total amount of storage capacity being used as a percentage of the total available storage capacity.

9. Network Utilization

Measures the percentage of available network bandwidth being used, indicating how effective the data center’s network resources are being utilized.

10. Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF)

The average time between hardware failures within the data center, indicating the reliability of the infrastructure.

11. Mean Time To Repair (MTTR)

The average time it takes to fix a failure or issue within the data center, showing the effectiveness of the maintenance and support processes.

12. Data Center Downtime

The total amount of time that the data center is unavailable due to planned or unplanned outages.

13. Data Center Availability

The percentage of time that the data center is operational and available for use.

14. Incident Response Time

The average time taken to respond to issues or incidents within the data center.

15. First-Time Fix Rate

The percentage of incidents resolved without needing further assistance or support tickets.

16. Annualized Failure Rate (AFR)

The estimated percentage of hardware failures that may occur within a year, providing insight into the reliability of the data center equipment.

17. Service Level Agreement (SLA) Compliance

The percentage of time the data center meets or exceeds its agreed-upon performance standards.

18. Cost per Transaction

The total cost associated with processing a transaction in the data center, including IT resources, infrastructure, and support costs.

19. Energy Cost per Transaction

The energy cost associated with processing a transaction in the data center, highlighting the efficiency of IT operations.

20. Asset Lifecycle Management

Tracking and managing the lifecycle of all physical assets within the data center, including procurement, deployment, maintenance, and decommissioning.

These metrics can help data center managers and operators monitor the performance, efficiency, and effectiveness of their facilities and make informed decisions for improvements.

Data Center Metrics Explained

Data center metrics play a crucial role in helping businesses optimize their facilities for better performance, efficiency, and sustainability. Metrics such as Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) and Data Center Infrastructure Efficiency (DCiE) provide insights into energy consumption and the effectiveness of IT equipment, while Carbon Usage Effectiveness (CUE) and Water Usage Effectiveness (WUE) reflect on the environmental impact of data center operations.

Monitoring IT load, capacity, server, storage, and network utilization ensures effective resource utilization. Reliability and maintenance indicators like MTBF, MTTR, downtime, and incident response time reflect infrastructure robustness and support process efficiency.

First-Time Fix Rate, AFR, and SLA Compliance help evaluate data center performance. Cost per Transaction, Energy Cost per Transaction, and Asset Lifecycle Management help optimize cost and lifespan of data center infrastructure. Together, these metrics offer a comprehensive view of data center operations, enabling better-informed decisions for continuous improvement.


In conclusion, data center metrics help measure, analyze, and optimize performance, enabling informed decision-making, increased operational efficiency, and solid ROI. Staying current on key metrics supports continuous improvement and promotes a more secure and efficient IT environment, ultimately contributing to organizational success and competitiveness in the data-driven world.


What are the primary metrics used to measure data center performance?

The primary data center metrics include Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE), Data Center Infrastructure Efficiency (DCiE), Data Center Energy Productivity (DCeP), Data Center Performance Per Energy (DPPE), and Carbon Usage Effectiveness (CUE).

What is Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE), and why is it important?

Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) is a metric that measures the energy efficiency of a data center. It is calculated by dividing the total data center energy consumption by the IT equipment's energy consumption. A lower PUE indicates higher efficiency, as it means that more power is being used to run the IT equipment rather than support infrastructure.

Can you explain Data Center Infrastructure Efficiency (DCiE)?

Data Center Infrastructure Efficiency (DCiE) is a metric that demonstrates the efficiency of a data center's supporting infrastructure. It is calculated by dividing the IT equipment's energy consumption by the total data center energy consumption and then multiplying by 100 to obtain a percentage. A higher percentage is desirable, as it indicates more efficient use of the power consumed by the infrastructure.

How does Data Center Energy Productivity (DCeP) help assess data center efficiency?

Data Center Energy Productivity (DCeP) is an important metric that measures the amount of useful work, such as computations or data transactions, performed by a data center per unit of energy consumed. DCeP typically uses metrics like Work Powered by Energy (WPE), which measures the number of tasks completed per kWh of energy consumed. A higher DCeP score indicates a more efficient data center, as it means that more useful work is being completed with the same energy consumption.

What is Carbon Usage Effectiveness (CUE), and how does it relate to data center sustainability?

Carbon Usage Effectiveness (CUE) is a metric that measures the carbon emissions associated with a data center's energy consumption. It is calculated by dividing the total carbon dioxide emissions by the IT equipment's energy consumption. A lower CUE score indicates a more environmentally sustainable data center, as it signifies a reduced carbon footprint for the given energy usage.

How we write our statistic reports:

We have not conducted any studies ourselves. Our article provides a summary of all the statistics and studies available at the time of writing. We are solely presenting a summary, not expressing our own opinion. We have collected all statistics within our internal database. In some cases, we use Artificial Intelligence for formulating the statistics. The articles are updated regularly.

See our Editorial Process.

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