Feeds

Yahoofrastructure swells in face of Microsoft pact

Yes, we're a technology company

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Though it will eventually offload search to Steve Ballmer and Microsoft, Yahoo! has no intention of shrinking the new back-end infrastructure now driving its search technologies.

"What impact does the Microsoft search deal have on the Yahoo! cloud? It has no impact," Shelton Shugar, Yahoo!'s senior vp of cloud computing, tells The Reg. "All the services we're building, we will continue to build. All the roadmaps we have in place, we will continue to work towards."

For the past few years, Yahoo! has worked to build a unified collection of back-end platforms that can run all its online applications. Or at least most of them. Among other things, this so-called "private cloud" relies heavily on Hadoop, the open-source number-crunching platform based on Google's proprietary infrastructure.

According to Shugar, the company's search technologies eat up less than half of the resources served by its cloud, and when search departs for Redmond, other services are sure to fill the hole. "Search is just one of the many services [in use across the platform]. We use it for advertising. We use it for content. We use it for all of our usage logs. It is essentially becoming the data warehouse for all of Yahoo!" he says.

The company now has about 25,000 servers running Hadoop, and Shugar says "search is not the majority user."

Following the July agreement with Microsoft, Hadoop founder Doug Cutting left Yahoo! for the Hadoop-happy startup Cloudera, raising questions about Yahoo!'s future with the open source project. But Shugar says the company may even grow its core Hadoop team. "There will be no backing away from Hadoop. You may even see an acceleration."

Yahoo! is Hadoop's largest contributor, and the company will join the community as it descends on midtown Manhattan later this week for Hadoop World, the platform's first east coast developer conference.

Shugar says Yahoo! is still at work on an SQL-like Hadoop programming language that dovetails with a lower-level language known as Pig. Appropriately enough, the Yahooligans call it Pig SQL.

Yes, there's already an SQL-like Hadoop language: Hive, developed at Facebook. But much to the Facebook's chagrin, Yahoo! feels the need to build a language that better suits its existing Hadoop infrastructure. "We have this Pig stack. We have a lot of things built on this Pig stack, including an optimizer," Shugar says. "We want to keep that stack streamlined."

That said, the new language will be open-sourced.

One thing Yahoo! will not do - at least for the foreseeable future - is open up its infrastructure to external developers, as Google, Microsoft, and Amazon have done. Its private cloud will remain private. But, Shugar points out, Yahoo! is juicing developers through its open source contributions. Despite the media-fueled notion that it's nothing but an online advertising outfit, he insists, Yahoo! is still a technology company. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Death by 1,000 cuts: Mainstream storage array suppliers are bleeding
Cloud, all-flash kit, object storage slicing away at titans of storage
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Oracle reveals 32-core, 10 BEEELLION-transistor SPARC M7
New chip scales to 1024 cores, 8192 threads 64 TB RAM, at speeds over 3.6GHz
VMware vaporises vCHS hybrid cloud service
AnD yEt mOre cRazy cAps to dEal wIth
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?