Differences Between Bitcoin Mining Farms and Traditional Data Centers

Differences Between Bitcoin Mining Farms and Traditional Data Centers

Mining
January 27, 2023 by Diana Ambolis
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Despite their similarities, Bitcoin mining farms and traditional data centers differ fundamentally in several ways. Server design. In contrast to commercial servers, which must handle various applications, mining servers are designed for a single purpose. Mining servers may operate at temperatures as high as 90 degrees Fahrenheit and relative humidity between 10 and 80 percent.
Differences Between Bitcoin Mining Farms and Traditional Data Centers

Despite their similarities, Bitcoin mining farms and traditional data centers differ fundamentally in several ways.

Server design.

In contrast to commercial servers, which must handle various applications, mining servers are designed for a single purpose. Mining servers may operate at temperatures as high as 90 degrees Fahrenheit and relative humidity between 10 and 80 percent. A powerful mining server may demand at least 1.4 kW of energy and emit considerable heat. Consequently, some manufacturers include a controller that changes the server’s fan speed, voltage, and clock speed based on its temperature. Moreover, mining servers have larger cross-sectional areas to provide better airflow over their specialized CPUs, allowing for more effective heat dissipation.

Building structure.

Frequently, mining farms are housed inside warehouses or storage facilities. They have low levels of reliability and are not fully protected against extreme weather events. Cooling systems often lack redundancy, and operational errors and abrupt infrastructure failures are very unusual. With less cooling infrastructure, the mechanical rooms are reduced, allowing more space for mining servers but increasing the required power capacity.

Air distribution.

The servers in a traditional data center are protected in racks that assist cable management and ventilation. In a mining farm, servers are often mounted atop industrial shelving units to make device replacement more accessible in the event of a failure. This arrangement allows air to enter the device from above, below, and on both sides. Due to the absence of proper airflow management, such as hot/cold aisle confinement, the air temperature at the input of the servers is very variable. This bookcase is inexpensive to purchase and install.

Cooling.

Mining farms may dramatically reduce their energy costs by reducing or eliminating cooling system components, including chillers, cooling towers, pumps, pipelines, and ducting. In addition, when it comes to servers operating in high temperatures may often use outdoor air for cooling instead of mechanical cooling. Therefore, the geographic location of a Bitcoin mining farm is essential. Optimal energy efficiency is accomplished by pairing servers that can operate at higher temperatures with more excellent areas. Some data centers allow cryptocurrency mining to use liquid cooling, in which liquid surrounds the computers, absorbs heat, and then changes into gas to dissipate heat.

Energy utilization and efficiency.

Energy costs are the primary problem of Bitcoin mining farms. Understanding the factors that affect energy use and financial recovery is essential for maximizing earnings. In contrast to commercial servers, for whom it is difficult to draw a clear correlation between a server’s energy consumption and its return on investment, this data is easily accessible for mining servers, which perform just one activity.

Also read: Top 5 Factors Make Location Ideal For Crypto Mining

Reliability.

Bitcoin Mining farms, unlike their commercial counterparts, do not emphasize reliability. That is due to the fast replacement of malfunctioning servers. Losses are incurred, although not to the same level as when a corporate data center failure impacts hundreds or thousands of customers.

Utmost capacity In contrast to typical data centers, where workloads change in response to shifting demand, mining farms are densely packed with energy-hungry equipment that functions at full capacity 24x7x365. Racks in Bitcoin mining data centers use hundreds of kilowatts of electricity, orders of magnitude more than racks in traditional data centers.

Environmental concerns.

Governments, the media, and consumers have a negative impression of bitcoin mining operations due to their industrial scale and enormous energy use. China, Russia, Vietnam, Bolivia, Colombia, and Ecuador are among the nations that have previously banned Bitcoin as a payment mechanism.