Vamshidhar Kommineni

January 23, 2007

Data Centers for everyone!

Filed under: Microsoft — Vamshi @ 10:06 am

Well, at least for Microsoft and Google. This announcement was made on Thursday about Microsoft building a $550 million data center in San Antonio, Texas. Local news in San Antonio covers it. Don Dodge has some interesting commentary on data centers coinciding with the announcement. It made Slashdot as well. A number of things in this space are interesting:

  • Google and Microsoft are in an escalating race to build out data centers which probably won’t let up anytime soon
  • The capital costs of these data centers is immense and puts them out of reach of most startup companies (though Amazon’s EC2 and S3 might provide an early preview of how smaller companies lease space in these larger data centers)
  • Placement of data centers is primarily motivated by cost of electricity, land cost and (to a lesser extent) by their proximity to fiber
  • The depreciation on these data centers is staggering. Consider that most of the hardware that gets put in them will be obsolete in 3 years and possibly need replacing. As hardware and power optimal data center design improves, the data centers themselves might need to be refurbished to stay in service
  • This new breed of data centers will slowly require distributed services (or more likely, their underlying software infrastructure) to be truly aware of geography of data (rather than simple redundancy/co-location of copies of data) and result in big changes

Other data center news:

Google in North & South Carolina: 1, 2, 3

Microsoft in Quincy, Washington: 1

Google in Dalles, Oregon: 1

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