Facebook hopes to spur data-center innovation (photos)

In order to meet the extreme demands put on its servers, Facebook has designed its own data center setup. Now it's sharing those plans with partners and competitors alike.

In order to meet the extreme demands put on its servers, Facebook has designed its own servers and data-center setup. Now, with a project called the Open Compute Project, it's sharing those plans with partners and competitors alike in the hopes that it will help push the evolution of data-center design. Here are a few photos from today's event, held in Palo Alto, Calif. For more details on the project, see our article here .

Mark Zuckerberg introduces the team who developed new integrated server and data centers in Palo Alto today.
Mark Zuckerberg introduces the team who developed new integrated server and data centers in Palo Alto today. James Martin/CNET

Facebook's new three-column data center, which holds 90 servers.
Facebook's new three-column data center, which holds 90 servers. James Martin/CNET

Amir Michael shows off a view inside one of Facebook's data centers, where he chose to use 7-cent-apiece blue LED lights instead of the cheaper 2-cent-apiece green LED lights, just because he thought it looked better.
Amir Michael shows off a view inside one of Facebook's data centers, where he chose to use 7-cent-apiece blue LED lights instead of the cheaper 2-cen-apiece green LED lights, just because he thought it looked better. James Martin/CNET

One of the new servers on display at Facebook's HQ in Palo Alto. A small team of Facebook engineers spent the past two years tackling a big challenge: how to scale the massive computing infrastructure in the most efficient and economical way possible.
One of the new servers on displayed at Facebook's HQ in Palo Alto. A small team of Facebook engineers spent the past two years tackling a big challenge: how to scale the massive computing infrastructure in the most efficient and economical way possible. James Martin/CNET

At a panel on data-center development at Facebook today (from left): Lanham Napier, chief executive officer of Rackspace Hosting; Frank Frankovsky, director of hardware design and supply chain at Facebook; Mike Locatis from the Department of Energy; Jason Allen, chief technical officer of Zynga; and Forrest Norrod, vice president and general manager for worldwide server platforms at Dell.
At a panel on data-center development at Facebook today (from left): Lanham Napier, chief executive officer of Rackspace Hosting; Frank Frankovsky, director of hardware design and supply chain at Facebook; Mike Locatis from the Department of Energy; Jason Allen, chief technical officer of Zynga; and Forrest Norrod, vice president and general manager for worldwide server platforms at Dell. James Martin/CNET

About the author

James Martin is the staff photographer at CNET News, covering the geeks and gadgets of Silicon Valley. When he's not live-blogging the latest product launches from Apple, Google, or Facebook, James can be found exploring NASA, probing robotics labs, and getting behind-the-scenes with some of the Bay Area's most innovative thinkers.

 

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