Ready for prime time was how Andrew Geissler, an IBM senior software engineer, was describing OpenBMC’s development at this year’s 2018 Open Compute Project Summit. Essentially, a lot of work has been put into fixing bugs and the project is now ready for general use. To this end it has been already deployed by multiple companies in datacentres worldwide.
For those who don’t know, OpenBMC is a Linux Foundation open-source project written in C++ and Python. It has a goal to produce a baseboard management controller which is open source and can operate in heterogeneous deployments. Deployments ranging from enterprise, HPC, telco to cloud. Well actually it’s official goal, as taken from the readme, is “to create a highly extensible framework for BMC software and implement for data-center computer systems.” The founding members of the project are Microsoft, Intel, IBM, Google and, of course, Facebook.
BMCs in general are controllers that monitor the state of hardware and are typically found in the main circuit board of the device. It is often in the form of a SoC and they enable monitoring and management of your hardware eg health (like temperature/fan speeds), event logs, and remote management capabilities. These are essential for today’s remotely deployed servers.
OpenBMC is welcome news as, until now, you were essentially locked into your hardware vendor of choice and hope they created good enough BMC firmware. Either way, you probably had to maintain a few different variants. At the OCP Summit it was clear that if you want to run Project Olympus hardware you need OpenBMC to run the board. This is because currently Microsoft licenses firmware from Intel that it can not open source along with the hardware.
On a customer level, some of the functions that have recently received some love are:
- Moving from yaml to json
- Ipmi – now has it 2.0 compliant
- Full dcmi support
- Web interface
The coming soon list is as follows:
- VGA mirroring
- KVM over ip
- Adv user management – eg ldap
- Remote media
- SNMP / telemetry
- inboard firmware update
- Se Linux / security enhancements
Not content with taking a large chunk of the white box hardware market, it would seem Facebook is now moving into chip design. Whilst the social network has decided not to comment at this time about the project, there is a job posting asking for candidates that can: Continue reading
Ethernet takes another jump in speed. Yes, Edgecore have announced 400 gigabit Ethernet or 400GbE. The big reveal happened at this year’s Open Compute Summit in San Jose and will be the industry’s first 400G open design. Edgecore have contributed the specification and design package to the OCP foundation. Continue reading
Despite rain attendance at the 2018 OCP summit was at an all time high with over 3000 delegates on day one. Having attended two years ago it was clearly a swelling audience for the keynote opening speech. Continue reading
Earlier this year Hyperscale IT received a RackSolutions OCP Open Rack enclosure. The rack was delivered to Aegis Data, our partnering OCP-compatible datacentre. The following post details some of our findings around the unpacking and installation of the cabinet. Continue reading
With the rise of white box environments network equipment is being liberated from captive pre-installed network OSes. You can now choose your bare metal switch hardware and operating system separately and then change it trivially later. Surely this creates chaos and a compatibility nightmare I hear you say. Continue reading
Installing SaltStack can be a pain as there is some initial installation and configuration needed before Salt can actually be used. This post shows how you can install and operate Salt on a Cumulus Linux switch without ever needing to log into the switch directly. The operations shown below can easily be expanded to install many switches at once. Continue reading
Read our feature in The Stack about the impact the Open Compute Project is having on data centre innovation:
What the Open Compute Project can deliver in the data centre
“Major players are coming together to innovate efficient data centres at a pace faster than ever seen before”
Aegis Data, a provider of highly resilient and optimised data centre environments and colocation services, will be linking forces with data centre hardware firm Hyperscale IT to demonstrate the huge potential of the Open Compute Project (OCP) at the DatacenterDynamics Zettastructure Summit on 1st – 2nd November 2016. Aegis Data will be showcasing the technology on stand 140. Continue reading
Aegis Data has entered into an agreement with data centre hardware firm Hyperscale IT, which is providing it with access to Open Compute hardware services. The partnership will allow Aegis Data’s customers to significantly benefit from greater flexibility and lower total cost of ownership when it comes to fulfilling their compute needs. Continue reading