Facebook has launched a project to ‘open source’ its datacentre


Facebook has launched a project to ‘open source’ its datacentre

Kathleen Hall

In the spirit of open source software, Facebook says it wants to share the innovations in one of its datacentres with the rest of the industry in its Open Compute Project.

The social networking company claims it has built its first datacentre from the ground up, which uses 38% less energy and costs 24% less than its other datacentres.

"Opening the technology means the community will make advances that we wouldn't have discovered if we had kept it secret," said the company.

Facebook is publishing specifications and mechanical designs for the hardware used in the datacentre, including motherboards, power supply, server chassis, server rack, and battery cabinets. In addition, it will share its electrical and mechanical construction specifications.

Lanham Napier, CEO at Rackspace, says he enthusiastically supports the Open Compute Project. "The Rackspace team has visited and studied Facebook's next-generation datacentre, our engineers continue to collaborate, and we look forward to optimising Openstack for Open Compute," he said.

Jonathan Heiliger, vice-president of technical operations at Facebook, discusses the Open Compute Project.

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