Facebook: More Photos, Less Storage Energy
It's been reported that Facebook users uploaded about 240 billion photographs and that number is only growing to the tune of 350 million photos every day.
Man, that's a lot of baby, cat and food pics, don't ya think?
Regardless of the content, apparently all those photos take up a ton of virtual server space, as in loads of hard drives which require loads of energy.
The Oregonian is reporting that Zuck and crew are preparing to test pilot more energy efficient storage systems at its Prineville data center.
Dubbed “cold storage,” the servers will store your old pics in an archival format, but still be available to you when you want to go back and see what stupid photos you posted to your friends wall in college.
According to the report, Facebook says 82 percent of its traffic is focused on just 8 percent of its photos and the cold storage facility is designed to create a more efficient way to store those photos that aren’t in heavy rotation.
The building is apparently under construction and Facebook hopes to have the first of three phases up and running by fall. Each of the three 16,000-square-foot data hubs could hold an exabyte of data – equivalent to 1 million hard drives inside a contemporary PC, reported the Oregonian.
This will be the third data center in that location. However, in this case, the cold storage servers will be idle, waiting for users to ping them when archived data requests are made.
“The principle will be so that it doesn’t impact the user experience – so think about a matter of seconds, or milliseconds,” said Michael Kirkland, a Facebook communication manager, told the Oregonian.
According to the report, Facebook said that a cold-storage data center will cost one-third less than its standard data center.
That's a lot less juice for sure. I can only imagine what their cold storage needs will be over the next year as more and more images are uploaded to the network.
At some point, Facebook might want to consider a way for users to batch download their archived images and even offer a small fee-based service that will allow users to manage their digital memories in a Dropbox sort of way.