the Open19 project

The Open19 project is an initiative launched by LinkedIn  in 2016 to standardize form factors for data center servers, storage and networking components. The primary goal of the Open19 project is to simplify and standardize the 19-inch rack form factor, and increase interoperability between different server vendor's technology. For example, organizations could buy blade servers from different vendors that interoperate within a standard single chassis. This helps users avoid being locked into a single, proprietary server technology or vendor.

By standardizing the Electronic Industries Association (EIA) 19-inch rack design, Open19 also aims to reduce shared hardware in the rack by 50 percent, optimize rack deployment to lower costs, enable faster data center rack integration and increase energy and cooling efficiency. A top-of-rack networking switch and battery backup unit are optional specifications, as well.

Specifications for an Open19 data center rack include:

  • EIA standard 19-inch, 4-post rack
  • Brick cage; brick, double brick and double high brick
  • Power shelf with 12V distribution
  • Snap-on power cables with 200-250 watts per brick
  • Snap-on data cables with 100G per brick

As of this writing, participating vendors in the Open19 project include Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, Broadcom, Supermicro and Mellanox Technologies.

This was last updated in October 2016

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