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8 Ways for a Sustainable Database Migration

May 29, 2024 by Nandan Umarji

Sustainability is no longer an option but a necessity. Organizations need solutions to reduce their carbon footprints without compromising productivity and performance.

This article is dedicated to corporate leaders who understand their responsibility towards the environment and are looking for ways to adopt sustainable database migration practices that don't hamper productivity and decided budget. You can reduce your carbon footprint with the right strategy and careful planning.

While migrating a database, you must adopt efficient energy practices. Here are some ways you can reduce energy consumption, lowering the overall carbon emission for a sustainable database migration:

How to Perform Sustainable Database Migration?

  • Data Cleansing and Archiving: Before migration, thoroughly clean your database by removing obsolete, duplicate, or irrelevant data. This reduces the overall volume of data that needs to be transferred and stored, minimizing energy consumption. Additionally, consider archiving inactive data that might be required for historical reference but isn't accessed frequently.
  • Data Partitioning: If your database is huge, consider migrating it in partitions. This allows for a more targeted approach, initially transferring only the most critical data and migrating the remaining data in phases. This strategy minimizes the total amount of data transferred simultaneously, potentially reducing energy consumption. 


Choosing the Right Cloud Provider

  • Renewable Energy Commitment: Research your potential cloud providers' sustainability practices. Opt for providers strongly committed to supplying their data centers with renewable energy sources like solar or wind power. This ensures that your migrated database is indirectly powered by clean energy.
  • Data Center Location: Consider the geographical location of the cloud provider's data center. Ideally, choose a data center located closer to your main user base to minimize the distance data needs to travel. This reduces the carbon footprint associated with data transfer.


Migration Method Optimization

  • Efficient Data Transfer Tools: Utilize data migration tools designed for efficiency. These tools often employ data compression techniques and optimized transfer protocols to minimize the amount of data transferred and the associated energy consumption.
  • Off-peak Migration Windows: Schedule your database migration during off-peak hours when network traffic is lower. This reduces the competition for bandwidth and potentially translates to a more energy-efficient transfer process.


Post-Migration Optimization

  • Cloud-Native Database Services: If migrating to the cloud, consider using cloud-native database services offered by your cloud provider. These services are often designed for scalability and efficiency, potentially reducing the overall energy footprint compared to traditional on-premise database deployments.
  • Database Rightsizing: After migration, analyze your database usage patterns and optimize resource allocation within the cloud environment. Ensure you're not paying for more resources (storage, processing power) than needed. Cloud providers often offer auto-scaling features that dynamically adjust resources based on real-time requirements.


Additional Considerations for a Sustainable Database

Move off-premise

As per Accenture, migrating workloads to the cloud can result in an 84% reduction in carbon emissions. This is because cloud service providers like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) invest heavily in building and maintaining state-of-the-art data centers. These facilities use the latest energy-efficient server technologies and cooling systems, significantly reducing energy consumption compared to on-premise data centers.
Moreover, cloud providers consolidate the needs of many businesses into massive data centers. This allows them to achieve higher server utilization rates, reducing the overall energy required to run the infrastructure.

These three major cloud service providers have committed to becoming carbon neutral in the coming years. AWS, for instance, is committed to using 100% renewable energy by 2025 and becoming carbon neutral by 2040 across all Amazon properties.

Optimize Database

A well-designed database schema minimizes data redundancy and optimizes query performance. This reduces the storage space and processing power needed to retrieve data, leading to lower energy consumption.

Moreover, indexing the database regularly and adequately updating it as required reduces the number of disk accesses and overall energy consumption.

Better Database Management Practices

Storing irrelevant data wastes storage space and increases the processing overhead for backups and queries. Data compression is another method to reduce energy consumption. Compress data whenever possible, especially for backups and archives. This reduces storage requirements and the associated energy consumption.
Modern database systems often offer built-in compression features. Moreover, optimizing queries to minimize processing time and energy usage also reduces energy consumption. You can utilize tools and techniques for query performance analysis and optimization.

Software Optimization

Database version updates and tuning can also help reduce carbon footprints. The latest versions of the database option come with optimized energy utilization. Moreover, you should configure the database settings to fine-tune the performance. You can contact your database administrator to understand these settings.

Hardware Optimization

Hardware also plays a vital role in the energy consumption of the database systems. While initially more expensive, replacing traditional hard disk drives (HDDs) with SSDs can significantly improve performance and reduce energy consumption. SSDs have faster access times and lower power requirements. Additionally, consolidating multiple underutilized database servers onto fewer, more powerful machines reduces the overall hardware footprint and associated energy consumption.



Having a sustainable database system and adopting new practices that reduce energy consumption may require expert guidance and advice. Here's where Mactores can help!

At Mactores, we are committed to providing solutions by utilizing 100% resources and reducing resource waste. This translates into a more sustainable database migration. Moreover, our migration strategy considers the sustainability practices that reduce your carbon footprint, improve performance, and save costs.

Want to know how we do it?


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