Open Compute Project

Offering Choices to Address Growing Data Center Needs

Thursday, June 01, 2017 · Posted by at 3:09 AM

Earlier this week we held our leadership sprint with the community’s project leaders and technical committee (IC). I presented on the value and benefits of the Carrier Grade OpenRack-19 architecture and the community was quick to point out that the architecture is also an ideal fit for cloud data centers where compatibility with 19” EIA-310 is desirable.  They asked that I share my thoughts on this architecture, so here we go! 

Let’s start off with a little history. When the Open Compute Project was kicked off in 2011, Facebook open sourced the rack architecture deployed into their Prineville Oregon data center. The OpenRack architecture broke from the legacy 19” EIA-310 rack with a design that made 15% better use of volume, better airflow (which enabled an air-cooled facility), highly efficient power conversion, with tool-less and front accessible modules to reduce deployment time and maintenance costs. By 2016, we were realizing that no single rack solution was ideally suited for the constraints placed on the rack by the facility designers or operations teams. Our community had grown to a worldwide organization and so had the requirements.   

 CG-OpenRack-19 System  (rear view)Along come Radisys & ADLINK. A worldwide provider of telecommunications equipment, Radisys saw a similar demand for a new rack architecture that delivered the same benefits as OpenRack, while providing backwards compatibility with the legacy equipment found in telecom data centers and central offices. Working with Verizon and leveraging the OpenRack concept, Radisys prototyped a new rack architecture for the worldwide telecom carriers. They deployed hundreds of nodes, executing months of field trials, and capturing feedback from OCP’s Telecom and OpenRack project teams. The design was an intersection of OpenRack and 19” EIA-310, flavored with a few requests from the carriers. By December 2016 the CG-OpenRack-19 specification (CG for Carrier Grade) was accepted.  A few months later, ADLINK, another leading telecom segment provider, contributed the Open Sled specification for CG-OpenRack-19.  The Open Sled enables suppliers to build a one-half width sled with zones defined for mezzanine boards, network interface modules (NIMs), switches, hardware accelerators, MR-IOV functions, and PCIe expansion slots.   The entire design package is for Open Sled is available, enabling the industry to quickly design and deploy new I/O to meet the various use cases found in the central office.   

Compatible and serviceable. CG-OpenRack-19 is backward compatible with most equipment that fits into a 19” wide EIA-310 rack. The architecture allows for 1U and 2U sleds, either ½ or full width, that install from the front and blind-mate to a 12VDC bus bar.  The sled enclosure provides EMI/EMC shielding and safety and the suppliers provide these sleds with safety and regulatory certification.  

From one to any. CG-OpenRack-19 gives your operations team flexibility now and in the future. Any number of storage sleds, server sleds, switches, or power shelfs can be installed or added. There is no minimum, nor is there a max (as room allows).   

Pre-wired Network. Connectors, even locking connectors, aren’t foolproof when service personnel are working in the hot aisle. One of the biggest causes of system crashes and downtime is from technicians unplugging the wrong connector. CG-OpenRack-19 offers a simple solution. Power is delivered thru blind mate bus bars and data connections are made via a single blind mate connector on the rear of each tray.  The data connector provides four (4) optical Ethernet connections to each ½ or full width sled. Based on the intended installation, the rack would be pre-wired for the data center’s management and network topology. As an example, a data center with isolated and segregated systems management may choose to allocate one port for 1GbE device management, one port for 10GbE application management, and use the other two as the 40GbE primary and secondary data planes. Once installed, the rear of the rack never needs to be accessed and the hot aisle is off limits!


Efficient, scalable power. Looking ahead at processor roadmaps, for FPGA devices, and the use of GPUs, power to each sled must be scale-able (as an example, four GPU’s in a sled will draw 1000 watts!). The power shelf concept facilitates ‘right sizing’ and eliminates phase imbalance while the bus bar provides sufficient power. CG-OpenRack-19 implements two bus bar pairs, each identical to OpenRack, mounted onto an ordinary EIA-310 rack and spanning across any number of RU slots. 12VDC power is cabled to the bus bars in the same manner as OpenRack. The industry already provides a variety of options for the power shelf, including A and B utilities feeds, single and 3-phase input, with phase balancing and failover, and BBU options.  


Looking back, looking ahead. When I grew up, the coax to our house was labeled, “TV CABLE.” Years later, that same coax just said “CABLE” and transmitted so much more than analog video. Similarly, CG-OpenRack-19 is much more than a carrier solution. It’s a solution that delivers efficiency, scale, and openness to the cloud data center. It’s supported by the biggest open hardware community in the world.  In the fast-moving-world we live in today, ‘carrier-grade’ is now deployable well beyond carriers’ networks: CG is becoming ‘standard’.

Find out more about how you can participate in the OCP Community at:

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Upcoming OCP Incubation Committee Elections

Tuesday, June 06, 2017 · Posted by at 5:05 AM

The OCP Incubation Committee elections are about to begin.

The timeline for the elections is as follows:


  • June 7th - June 14th: Informational Period

  • June 14th - July 5th: Nomination & Testimonial Period

  • July 5th - July 19th: Voting Period

  • July 24th: New Incubation Committee Announced

  • August 10th, 2017: First IC Meeting with new IC Members


What is the OCP Incubation Committee?


The Incubation Committee reviews and approves all new specs which are submitted to the OCP Foundation for inclusion. The IC meets every 6 weeks, and calls are open to the public (although we ask that only invited participants speak during these calls).

The IC Chair and Vice-Chair positions are appointed by the OCP Foundation Board, and are not up for election.

The nine (9) IC seats that mirror the nine (9) OCP Projects are elected positions. These are the positions which are up for election at this time.

Voting in the IC Election

A poll will be created for each of the nine seats that has more than one person running for that seat. The individuals who have been identified to vote on behalf of the member organization will be sent an email for each seat needing a vote.


IC Nomination Process


Only individuals from a Silver, Gold or Platinum Tiered Member organization in good standing are eligible to be nominated for an IC position. Nominations can be sent to or to


During the Nomination and Testimonial Period, the community may leave testimonials in support of a candidate. Information on how to post a testimonial will be posted on the OCP Blog and can also be found by emailing or to


IC Voting Process

To vote in an IC election an organization must be a Silver, Gold or Platinum Tiered Member.

Based on the organization's Tiered membership level it will be given a set number of voting keys. The members organization will determine which individuals the keys will be sent to. The Foundation will reach out to the point of contact listed on its membership agreement to confirm who will be sent the voting keys. Silver members will receive 1 key; Gold members will receive 2 keys; Platinum members will receive 3 keys.

More information on the voting process for the IC can be found at:


Who is eligible to vote in the IC elections?

  • The OCP Foundation Board

  • OCP Silver Corporate Level Members

  • OCP Gold Corporate Level Members

  • OCP Platinum Level Members


Voting Keys

Voting keys are tied to unique email addresses and can NOT be transferred.

The OCP Foundation Board - Each OCP Foundation Board member receives 1 voting key each. This key is separate from the Organization keys and is not included in the organization count.

  • OCP Silver Level Tiered Members - Each OCP Silver Corporate Level Member will receive 1 voting key. This means 1 person from a Silver level member organization can vote.


  • OCP Gold Level Tiered Members - Each OCP Gold Corporate Level Member will receive 2 voting keys. This means 2 people from a Gold level member organization can vote.

  • OCP Platinum Level Tiered Members - Each OCP Platinum Corporate Level Member will receive 3 voting keys. This means 3 people from a Gold level member organization can vote.


How Do Members Receive Voting Keys?

The point of contact for each Silver, Gold, or Platinum level Tiered Member in good standing will receive an email asking who gets the keys for that organization. When the voting phase starts those individuals identified by the member organization will be sent an email with voting instructions and a link to the ballot. Individuals can be added at anytime while the voting phase and poll is open.

If you have any questions regarding the IC election process please reach out to


About OCP

The Open Compute Project Foundation is a 501(c)(6) organization which was founded in 2011 by Facebook, Intel, and Rackspace. Our mission is to apply the benefits of open source to hardware and rapidly increase the pace of innovation in, near and around the data center and beyond.


If you would like more information on how to participate in the OCP Community please visit:

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Alibaba Group Joins Open Compute Project as Platinum Member

Wednesday, June 07, 2017 · Posted by at 6:59 AM

World’s largest online and mobile commerce company supports open standards being adopted throughout the world

The Open Compute Project Foundation (OCP) announced today that Alibaba Group (NYSE:BABA), the world’s largest online and mobile commerce company, has joined as a Platinum member. OCP was initiated by Facebook in 2011 with a mission to apply the benefits of open source to hardware and rapidly increase the pace of innovation in, near and around the data center and beyond. Since then, OCP has been consistently innovating around open source contributions for networking, servers, storage and Open Rack. 

Established in 1999, Alibaba Group's mission is to make it easy to do business anywhere. The company aims to build the future infrastructure of commerce. Alibaba Cloud, the Group's cloud computing arm, develops highly scalable platforms for cloud computing and data management. It provides a comprehensive suite of cloud computing services to support participants in Alibaba Group's online and mobile commerce ecosystem, including sellers, and other third-party customers and businesses.

Shanyuan Gao, Chief Architect of Alibaba Infrastructure Services, said: “We are delighted to become a platinum member of the OCP community, giving us a tremendous opportunity to share our leading data center technology with the world. We look forward to collaborating with OCP and its members around the world to drive the development and adoption of further technological breakthroughs intended to deliver an even greater impact for the industry, and we already have plans to contribute our innovations to OCP.”

“We now have a hyperscale company from Asia bringing best practices and thought leadership from the massive scale of their e-commerce marketplaces and cloud computing infrastructure, while Alibaba Group extends its involvement in open standards already being adopted throughout the world,” stated Bill Carter, Chief Technology Officer for the Open Compute Project Foundation.

“Today, there are more than 200 OCP members, and we’ve created a shared vision and venue to design for workloads of the future. We are thrilled Alibaba Group is bringing their expertise to OCP and contributing to this strong global community,” stated Jason Taylor, Open Compute Project Chairman of the Board.

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The Open Compute Project (OCP) Foundation is pleased to announce the call for nominations to serve on the OCP Incubation Committee (IC). There are nine seats available for the OCP Incubation Committee. These nine seats correspond with the nine OCP Projects:

  • Compliance and Interoperability

  • Data Center

  • Hardware Management

  • HPC

  • Networking

  • Rack & Power

  • Server

  • Storage

  • Telco


Please note that the OCP Incubation Committee Chair and Vice-Chair are not elected positions. They are appointed by the OCP Board of Directors.


Since the Open Compute Project Foundation is not a pay to play organization, the OCP Project Leads, Incubation Committee and other elected positions play an integral part in our mission, and will help to shape the future of the Foundation.


By participating as a member of the OCP IC you will be responsible for reviewing all contributions that are submitted to the OCP Foundation. You will work with both the project leads and the contributor to make sure all contributions are a fit for the goals and missions of the OCP Foundation.


This is an exciting opportunity to help shape the future of the OCP Foundation and it’s community while advancing the mission and goals of the Foundation.

Nomination Process


  • Individual must belong to an OCP Silver, Gold or Platinum Corporate Member organization.

  • If individual is participating on own then said individual must show sustained contribution and must be approved by the OCP Foundation as individual OCP Community Thought Leader.


  • Silver Members can hold no more than 1 leadership position at any given point in time.

  • Gold Members can hold no more than 2 leadership positions at any given point in time.

  • Platinum Members can hold no more than 3 leadership positions at any given point in time.

  • No one person can hold more than one leadership position at any given point in time.

 (If an organizational member is nominated and this nomination would cause the organization to go over its membership level limit then that individual and organization will be contacted prior to the names being released)


Call for nominations ends at 11:59pm PST on 4 July 2017.


Only submissions added to this webform will be accepted.  No personal emails will be accepted as eligible submissions. As the nominations are reviewed, nominees will be contacted by OCP staff to make sure they would like to accept the nomination and to provide a short bio/headshot for their testimonial page.


To nominate yourself or someone click here.

IC Positions

As noted above there are nine seats available on the IC.  To understand what is required of these positions please take a moment to review the roles and responsibilities of these positions.


  • Attend all the IC meetings (every 6 weeks, most are dial-in meetings, but a few will be in person).

  • Attend the bi-annual leadership sprints (travel required, OCP does not typically reimburse for travel expenses)

  • Review and provide feedback on all contributions within the allocated timeline (usually 1 week)

  • Cast a vote on all submissions by the stated deadline

  • Receive support from the operations specialist

  • Regularly attend the monthly project call for your assigned project

  • Set yearly goals for the project and review progress to goals with the PL and community, take necessary corrective action to meet those goals

  • Ensure OCP principles are embodied in specifications

  • Ensure specifications contribute meaningful value

  • Help shape new projects

  • Oversee one of the OCP chartered projects:

  • Assure PL is engaged with the community

  • Assure PL is holding monthly project meetings with agenda provided beforehand and notes provided afterwards

  • Plan regular engineering workshops

  • Keep the project charter current and make changes as necessary


Testimonial Phase

Eligibility: Any community member can add a positive endorsement to any nominee. During this phase of the election each nominee will have a page on the website which will include a picture, a bio and information on why they want to sit on the IC. This page is where the community will be allowed to endorse each nominee. While only Gold and Platinum members can vote on the nominees, the testimonial phase is open to any member of the community. (Please note all comments will be moderated and only positive endorsements will be allowed. Any negative comments will be deleted.)

Voting Process

Eligibility: Only Gold and Platinum OCP Corporate Members and the OCP Foundation Board will be eligible to vote. Gold Members will be given 2 voting keys and Platinum Members will be given 3 voting keys.  Between now and 5 July 2017, the OCP staff will be contacting the point of contact for each Gold and Platinum member to determine who from each organization will be sent keys.  Each key is tied to an email address and can not be shared.  





14 June

Call for Nominations/Testimonial Opens

5 July

Call for Nominations/Testimonial Closes

5 July

Publish List of Eligible Nominees to Wiki and Website

5 July

Voting Phase Starts

19 July

Voting Phase Ends

24 July

New IC Announced


If you have any questions please contact Michael Schill







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