infoTECH Feature

December 03, 2015

LinkedIn's New West Coast Data Center to Impact Speed, Data and the Environment

LinkedIn (News - Alert) has opened a West Coast data center to meet its growing storage and processing needs. This Hillsboro, Oregon data center makes up the trio of domestic data centers connecting the United States to the popular professional networking site. According to LinkedIn, these last 12 months have shown a 34 percent growth in user data and performance.

In addition to a new West Coast data center, a Singapore data center will also launch in early 2016, catering to audiences abroad and ensuring faster, more reliable connections in user activity. If you’ve gotten a few hiccups on LinkedIn lately, this may perhaps be the reason why. After all, with new feature rollouts, it was bound to happen.

Currently, LinkedIn is using 29 megawatts of capacity in current data centers. Interestingly enough, domestic users are consuming 26 of these megawatts, while the other three are being used across international borders.  As LinkedIn continues its operations, the demand for this complex social network continues. The Production Engineering Operations (PEO) team has done a decent job at keeping up with the demand. But, it is no easy task.

Based on LinkedIn’s conscious decision to have a data center that operates on green power, the Hillsboro location was selected. Another factor in this decision was based on its proximity to the Portland area, where it will be close to other tech companies and the data provider Infomart. Here, there will be easier access to “network diversity, expansion capabilities, power quality environmental impact and talent opportunities.” The goal is to ensure that users are provided with “fast, resilient and environmentally-responsible services. Through LinkedIn’s new expansion, they are predicting that this new data center will be one of the “most advanced and efficient data centers in the world.”

LinkedIn is also making offline contributions to the area. “We look forward to improving how we source energy and reaching our ultimate goal of 100 percent renewable energy use. This site will give us the flexibility to procure our own sustainable sources and explore new possibilities for renewable energy directly on the ground. Another benefit to this location is our ability to utilize free cooling nearly 200 days a year, thereby reducing our overall energy consumption,” reads a statement on the latest blog post by the company. Doing so will save them money, keeping LinkedIn’s premium services low, keep their expansions going – which creates more opportunities for us – and it is friendlier to our environment. We will all be breathing easier after a LinkedIn binge.

A final note from the folks at LinkedIn: “Once operational in late-2016, this data center will mark the final leg of our retail-to-wholesale migration, which began in 2013, enabling us to decommission our final two multi-megawatt retail-based locations. It also gives us the ability to implement our next-generation data center methodologies such as 400-volt distribution and cabinet level heat rejection, and doubling our cabinet densities from all previous builds. We’re delighted to participate in the growth of Portland as a next-generation sustainable technology center.”

Edited by Kyle Piscioniere

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