Facebook’s 100-gigabit switch design is out in the open

Facebook’s bid to open up networking is moving up into nosebleed territory for data centers. The company’s 100-gigabit switch design has been accepted by the Open Compute Project, a step that should help to foster an open ecosystem of hardware and software on high-speed networking gear.

The 32-port Wedge 100 is the follow-on to Facebook’s Wedge 40, introduced about two years ago and now in use in practically all of the company’s data centers, said Omar Baldonado, director of software engineering on Facebook’s networking team. Mostly, it’s a faster version of that switch, upping the port speed to 100Gbps (bits per second) from 40Gbps. But Facebook also added some features to make service easier, like a cover that can be removed without tools and LED status lights to check the condition of a the cooling fans from a distance.

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