Rackspace is involved with the Open Compute Project on a number of different activities. One of my main purposes right now is to help shape the Open Compute environment to insure that designs are optimized for our customers. This includes developing rack designs; making sure that the Open Rack project provides the necessary resilience and flexibility; shaping the motherboard designs to ensure that the I/O attributes are in place to provide the connectivity resources that we need; and more.
We also have the distinction here at Rackspace of leading the Virtual I/O community within Open Compute. This is geared around defining a framework that provides opportunities for cost reduction and flexibility not traditionally available in server platforms.
Our initial goal in the Virtual I/O project is to develop solutions that provide modularity and flexibility in assignment of expansion devices such as storage and network adapters to platforms. We often describe such elements as key attributes of the “personality” of a system. This “personality” includes devices such as network interface cards, storage resources and the like. With Virtual I/O, we want to make these things programmatically assignable so that we can define the capabilities of customer systems “just-in-time” rather than rush about the data center plugging in and managing individual components.