After more than a year in the works, LinkedIn took its new, 8-megawatt Hillsboro, Oregon data center live today—the first of its kind to implement a new hyperscale infrastructure strategy similar to those used by Google, Facebook and Microsoft.
The facility, which LinkedIn is leasing from Infomart Data Centers, features custom electrical and mechanical design with 96 servers per cabinet and uses just below 18kW of power per cabinet. The cooling design of the cabinet allows for densities up to 32 kW per rack, however. For cooling at that density, LinkedIn is using heat-conducting doors on every cabinet. Each cabinet acts as its own contained ecosystem, too, so there are no hot and cold aisles as in a typical data center.
"The advanced water side economizer cooling system communicates with outside air sensors to utilize Oregon's naturally cool temperatures, instead of using energy to create cool air," wrote Michael Yamaguchi, LinkedIn’s Director of Data Center Engineering in a blog." Incorporating efficient technologies such as these enables our operations to run a PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) of 1.06 during full economization mode."
Custom network switches are also unique to the data center. The switches are one of the biggest parts of the new data center transformation. LinkedIn has designed its own 100-Gigabit switches and a scale-out data center network fabric for better performance. It went with 100G for future capacity needs, and currently splits the 100G into two 50G ports using the PSM4 optical interface standard. This is less expensive than using 40G optical interconnect, according to the company.
It is also the first data center designed to enable the company to go from running on tens of thousands of servers to running on hundreds of thousands of servers.
The other LinkedIn data centers, located in California, Texas, Virginia, and Singapore, will transition to the new hyperscale infrastructure gradually.
“This is the most technologically advanced and highly efficient data center in our global portfolio, and includes a sustainable mechanical and electrical system that is now the benchmark for our future builds,” wrote Yamaguchi.
Testament to the data center's efficiency is the fact that Uptime Institute announced on Wednesday that it has awarded LinkedIn the Efficient IT (EIT) Stamp of Approval. "
This award includes a complete evaluation of enterprise leadership, operations, and computing infrastructure designed to help organizations lower costs and increase efficiency, and leverage technology for good stewardship of corporate and environmental resources. It also certifies an organization's sustainable leadership in IT, evidencing better control of how resources are both consumed and allocated," according to an Uptime press release.