Menu
Microsoft to reveal data-center server designs that save cash

Microsoft to reveal data-center server designs that save cash

Businesses with large data centers stand to net big savings in capital, power, deployment and maintenance costs if they follow server blueprints being made public by Microsoft.

The company plans to open-source a cloud server design that it says uses 15% less power than traditional enterprise servers and a 40% cost savings vs. those commercial alternatives.

+[Also on Network World: Facebook Open Compute Project picks switch specs | Pick your hardware vision: Open Compute Project vs. 'data centers in a box' +

The company says today that it is joining the Open Compute Project Foundation (OCP) and revealing specs and documentation for Microsoft's most advanced data-center hardware that supports its Windows Azure, Office 365 and Bing cloud services.

"[The servers] offer dramatic improvements over traditional enterprise server designs: up to 40 percent server cost savings, 15 percent power efficiency gains and 50 percent reduction in deployment and service times," says Bill Laing, Microsoft's Corporate Vice President for Cloud and Enterprise in the Official Microsoft Blog. "We also expect this server design to contribute to our environmental sustainability efforts by reducing network cabling by 1,100 miles and metal by 10,000 tons across our base of 1 million servers."

Laing made the announcement at the Open Compute Project Summit in San Jose.

The company is releasing its software for managing the hardware including diagnosing server problems, controlling fans and power supply, Laing says.

The server design includes a 12U chassis that includes power and networking connections, eliminating need for network cabling, according to Microsoft's Data Center Blog written by Kushagra Vaid, Microsoft's general manager for Server Engineering.

Each chassis shares power, fans, a signaling backplane and a system-on-a-chip management card. The chassis design featuring trays that slide in and out results in the potential to cut deployment and service times in half, Vaid says.

Microsoft isn't the first big cloud provider to join OCP. Facebook chairs the organization, and other major companies on the board include RackSpace, Arista and Intel.

The specifics of what Microsoft will make public:

Hardware specifications: server, mezzanine card, tray, chassis, and management card; management APIs and protocols for chassis and server.

Mechanical CAD models: chassis, server, chassis manager, and mezzanines.

Gerber files: Management card, power distribution board and tray backplane.

Source code for chassis infrastructure:server management, fan and power supply control, diagnostics and repair policy.

Tim Greene covers Microsoft and unified communications for Network World and writes the Mostly Microsoft blog. Reach him at tgreene@nww.com and follow him on Twitter@Tim_Greene.

Read more about data center in Network World's Data Center section.

Subscribe here for up-to-date channel news

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Configuration / maintenanceMicrosofthardware systemsbingData CenterFacebook

Featured

Slideshows

StorageCraft celebrates high achievers at its inaugural A/NZ Partner Awards

StorageCraft celebrates high achievers at its inaugural A/NZ Partner Awards

Revealed at a glitzy bash in Sydney at the Ivy Penthouse, the first StorageCraft Partner Awards locally saw the vendor honour its top-performing partners with ASI Solutions, SMBiT Pro, Webroot, ACA Pacific and Soft Solutions New Zealand taking home the top awards. Photos by Maria Stefina.

StorageCraft celebrates high achievers at its inaugural A/NZ Partner Awards
Kiwi resellers make a splash on Synnex and Lenovo RotoVegas road trip

Kiwi resellers make a splash on Synnex and Lenovo RotoVegas road trip

​Synnex and Lenovo hosted 18 resellers for an action-packed weekend adventure in RotoVegas, taking in white water rafting on the Kaituna River, as well as quad biking and dinner at Stratosfare​, overlooking Lake Rotorua at the top of Mount Ngongotaha​. Photos by Synnex.

Kiwi resellers make a splash on Synnex and Lenovo RotoVegas road trip
Show Comments