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Facebook pushes open standards for data centres

28 октября 2011

Facebook Inc. on Thursday unveiled a foundation to create open-source standards for data centers, which it said should ultimately speed innovation and make infrastructure more efficient.

Web companies often keep key details about their computing infrastructure confidential, but Facebook is leading a move to publish technical specifications for data centers. The company on Thursday said it hopes the effort will lessen the environmental impact of data centers, accelerate the pace of innovation in hardware, and allow organizations to scale to larger capacities.

Frank Frankovsky, Facebook director of hardware design and supply chain, compared the effort to the open-source software movement.

"Open source is not something to only describe software but also hardware as well," he said during the Open Compute Project Summit in New York.

As a result, Facebook is launching a foundation to monitor contributions, voting on each project to be included based on the merit of the proposal. The group, modeled afer the Apache Software Foundation, also will set standards to protect the intellectual property of contributors--something that has been seen as a limitation to widespread participation.

The board members include Frankovsky and executives from Intel Corp., Rackspace Hosting Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Arista Networks.

Frankovsky said contributors will sign an agreement, find or create a project, and then sign a copyright license agreement to be sure that whatever they're contributing is what they intend to contribute.

Some participants Facebook listed include large data center hardware providers such as Dell Inc.

"When we first launched this project, there were a lot of questions around how big [manufacturers] were going to respond," Frankovsky said."I'm really happy to say that Dell accepted our friend request, and they like open compute."

The news Thursday continues an initial announcement by Facebook in April that it would share details about its computers, power supplies, server racks, battery-backup systems and building design. The company at that time said its data center in Oregon was 38% more energy-efficient and 24% more cost-effective than the machines the social-networking giant had been using.

The company on Thursday also confirmed that it is building a new data center in the Arctic Circle.

Источник: Total Telecom

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