Open Compute – Going Beyond the Hype

How can you create a truly agile and scalable infrastructure? How do you design a platform built around efficiency and growth? What can you do to keep up with the dynamic growth and demand requirements around the modern data center platform?

Let’s delve in and find out.

Founded in 2011, the Open Compute Project has been gaining attention from more and more organizations. The promise of lower cost and open standards for IT servers and other hardware seems like a worth­while endeavor; one that should benefit all users of IT hardware, as well as improving the energy efficiency of the entire data center ecosystem.

The open source concept has proven itself successful for software, as witnessed by the widespread adop­tion and acceptance of Linux, despite early rejection from enterprise organizations.

The goal of Open Compute?

  • To develop and share the design for “vanity free” IT hardware which is energy efficient and less expen­sive.

In this whitepaper from Intel, HP and Data Center Knowledge contributor Julius Neudorfer, we examine the various develop­ments, industry adopters, and functional deploy­ments of Open Compute technologies, as well as potential advantages and limitations.

Here’s something to think about: one OCP design philosophy is a “vanity free” no frills design, which starts without an OEM branded-faceplate. In fact, the original OCP server had no faceplate at all. It only used the minimal compo­nents necessary for a dedicated function such as a massive web server farm (server had no video chips or connectors). This created a direct shift in how power and resources were utilized.

Today’s “mainstream” data center designs are based on assumptions that standardized commodity IT hardware will be used over its expected design life. It is assumed that the IT equipment could be re­freshed relatively frequently, but the facility should remain viable for 15 years or more without major changes. In the case of the Open Compute facility, this may also prove true and perhaps because of its energy efficient cooling design, it will be adopted by mainstream data centers.

There is no question that there are certain types of environments which can benefit economically from lower IT hardware costs and better energy ef­ficiency of the OCP computing paradigm. Download this whitepaper today to learn how data centers will actually adopt the “open” concept and utilize the OCP open hardware “standards” that exist today. Additionally, find out how this type of platform will impact your data center – and business structure – in the near future.

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About the Author

Bill Kleyman is a veteran, enthusiastic technologist with experience in data center design, management and deployment. His architecture work includes virtualization and cloud deployments as well as business network design and implementation. Currently, Bill works as the Vice President of Strategy and Innovation at MTM Technologies, a Stamford, CT based consulting firm.

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