SmoothOperator: Reducing Power Fragmentation and Improving Power Utilization in Large-scale Datacenters


By: Chang-Hong Hsu, Qingyuan Deng, Jason Mars, Lingjia Tang


With the ever growing popularity of cloud computing and web services, Internet companies are in need of increased computing capacity to serve the demand. However, power has become a major limiting factor prohibiting the growth in industry: it is often the case that no more servers can be added to datacenters without surpassing the capacity of the existing power infrastructure.

In this work, we first investigate the power utilization in Facebook datacenters. We observe that the combination of provisioning for peak power usage, highly fluctuating traffic, and multi-level power delivery infrastructure leads to significant power budget fragmentation problem and inefficiently low power utilization. To address this issue, our insight is that heterogeneity of power consumption patterns among different services provides opportunities to re-shape the power profile of each power node by re-distributing services. By grouping services with asynchronous peak times under the same power node, we can reduce the peak power of each node and thus creating more power head-rooms to allow more servers hosted, achieving higher throughput. Based on this insight, we develop a workload-aware service placement framework to systematically spread the service instances with synchronous power patterns evenly under the power supply tree, greatly reducing the peak power draw at power nodes. We then leverage dynamic power profile reshaping to maximally utilize the headroom unlocked by our placement framework. Our experiments based on real production workload and power traces show that we are able to host up to 13% more machines in production, without changing the underlying power infrastructure. Utilizing the unleashed power headroom with dynamic reshaping, we achieve up to an estimated total of 15% and 11% throughput improvement for latency-critical service and batch service respectively at the same time, with up to 44% of energy slack reduction.