Feeds

Reg snaps moment when Facebook turned air Blu: 1PB box for unloved pics

What the *&^%! 10,000-disc sarcophagus for old photos and likes

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

Picture Facebook has developed an archive storage system that uses Blu-ray discs to stuff a petabyte into a single cabinet.

The as-yet-unnamed 42U box was revealed at the Open Compute Summit in San Jose, California, on Tuesday. Facebook's chief of infrastructure engineering Jay Parikh said the social networking giant plans to publish the designs to the wider community shortly.

This means that electronics manufacturers will be able to start churning out gear based on the blueprints, giving companies access to a relatively open long-term storage platform.

Facebook chose Blu-ray discs for their high information density and longevity, we're told. The website's data jukeboxes can each hold 10,000 triple-layer 100GB discs, and hold the information for up to 50 years, Parikh said. In time the box may be able to contain up to 5PB if more bytes can be squeezed into the Blu-ray format.

FBBluRay

The Facebook archive system packs a petabyte of storage in a data-center cabinet

The system's access latency – limited by the time it takes to get a disc into a drive – is between 17 to 18 seconds, we understand, and the aggregate read rate is about 240 megabytes per second. The machine was developed over six months with help from German-Chinese outfit HIT Storage, and has been modified to fit the specifications of Facebook's Open Rack project.

The unnamed equipment is set to become the ultimate morgue for unloved and unvisited information stored in Facebook's gigantic social network; rarely accessed photos, for instance, will be banished to the gear after spending time on the company's hard disk-packed "Open Vault" cold storage systems.

Though many have suggested that tape would be the ideal platform to store this information in, Parikh once quipped: "I'd rather poke my eyes out with chopsticks [than use tape]."

Facebook's unnamed disc jockey will compete with existing tech such as Hitachi's HLDS Blu-ray Disc Optical Archiving System, which can pack up to 12 optical drives each storing 50TB per 8U enclosure, allowing a 42U stack to fit in up to 400TB of data.

Given that Amazon's long-term storage solution is nicknamed "Glacier", we would suggest that Facebook pick a pugnacious name for its similar solution – the FaceFridge, perhaps? ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs
Ragegasm spills over as firmware upgrade kills machines
Attack of the clones: Oracle's latest Red Hat Linux lookalike arrives
Oracle's Linux boss says Larry's Linux isn't just for Oracle apps anymore
THUD! WD plonks down SIX TERABYTE 'consumer NAS' fatboy
Now that's a LOT of porn or pirated movies. Or, you know, other consumer stuff
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
FLAPE – the next BIG THING in storage
Find cold data with flash, transmit it from tape
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.