Hanging out in the Zoho data center

I am here in the Zoho data center. I’m hanging out with Kris of Zooomr who is working on getting Zooomr back up. I am entertaining the hoardes that are hanging out in the chat room.

He is working on getting Zooomr back up. The machines are coming back up. Zooomr’s photos are back online — if you have one on a blog it isappearing again but the service is not up yet.

UPDATE: It is about 2 a.m., everything looks good for a reboot. I am driving Kristopher home and he will get some sleep and then later today (Saturday in California) he will work to get the site restarted. Looks like Zooomr will come back online.

Raj from Zoho is also here, he has been helping out a lot and putting in his own time to help Zooomr get restarted.

There is a lot that I am learning about data centers. There are hundreds of Google computers surrounding the Zoho cage. I wish I could take pictures in here (they don’t allow photography). But I’m even more impressed with Google now that I have seen a small part of their data center infrastructure.

Also, many companies have given Kristopher some help. Dell kicked but to fix the server. Sun loaned a Thumper with 48 hard drives. And another company donated servers — they didn’t want to be named but they are nice servers.

Raj gave me a little tour and explained the different kind of equipment in here. I wish I could videotape inside a datacenter and give you a look. These are amazing places — I’m staring at about 30 racks of Google computers, each with 40 computers inside. I can literally feel the heat from your searches!

Anyway, that’s all from the Zoho datacenter.

Published by

Robert Scoble

As Startup Liaison for Rackspace, the Open Cloud Computing Company, Scoble travels the world looking for what's happening on the bleeding edge of technology for Rackspace's startup program. He's interviewed thousands of executives and technology innovators and reports what he learns in books ("The Age of Context," a book coauthored with Forbes author Shel Israel, has been released at http://amzn.to/AgeOfContext ), YouTube, and many social media sites where he's followed by millions of people. Best place to watch me is on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble

Comments

  1. […] Source:Scobleizer I am here in the Zoho data center. I’m hanging out with Kris of Zooomr. We’re working on getting Zooomr back up. I’m entertaining the hoardes that are hanging out in the chat room. He’s working on getting Zooomr back up. The machines are coming back up. Zooomr’s photos are back online — if you have […] Share and Enjoy: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages. […]

  2. Thanks for keeping both us (the zooomr community, zooomrites, zooomrati or whatever you want to call us) and Kristopher company. Those data centers aren’t much fun alone.

    Your efforts, and those of our other benefactors(Zoho, Sun, Dell, et al) are greatly appreciated.

    -McBLG

  3. Thanks for keeping both us (the zooomr community, zooomrites, zooomrati or whatever you want to call us) and Kristopher company. Those data centers aren’t much fun alone.

    Your efforts, and those of our other benefactors(Zoho, Sun, Dell, et al) are greatly appreciated.

    -McBLG

  4. Wish I could get audio that is understandable. South African internet just sucks (im on broadband and I have a 3gb monthly cap) Anyhow, glad to see the Zooomr progress and that people have jumped on board to help out.

  5. Wish I could get audio that is understandable. South African internet just sucks (im on broadband and I have a 3gb monthly cap) Anyhow, glad to see the Zooomr progress and that people have jumped on board to help out.

  6. Hi, I would like introduce you the sec.un.dum (http://www.secundum.com.br). It looks like a Brazilian Technorati which pays for post’s bloggers. In the last month, sec.un.dum paied 2.4 dollars for each post in the 100 more visited list. This month it will pay 5 dollars. The site is a blog community for portuguese content.

  7. Hi, I would like introduce you the sec.un.dum (http://www.secundum.com.br). It looks like a Brazilian Technorati which pays for post’s bloggers. In the last month, sec.un.dum paied 2.4 dollars for each post in the 100 more visited list. This month it will pay 5 dollars. The site is a blog community for portuguese content.

  8. It would be great if you could elaborate why you’re “even more impressed with Google now that I have seen a small part of their data center infrastructure” — I presume you’ve seen impressive data centers at Microsoft, so you’re unlikely to have been easily thrilled by blinkenlights or neatly routed cabling. What impressed you about Google’s setup?

  9. It would be great if you could elaborate why you’re “even more impressed with Google now that I have seen a small part of their data center infrastructure” — I presume you’ve seen impressive data centers at Microsoft, so you’re unlikely to have been easily thrilled by blinkenlights or neatly routed cabling. What impressed you about Google’s setup?

  10. Our stuff was at the Canix datacenter in downtown Montreal, where I had to bring it to a cage. I wonder if it’s similar?
    At any rate, building your environment in a datacenter can’t be easy as most of the time you build it and test it far before you ever put it in the cage.(unless you own the cage).
    Good luck to them. I’m surprised that they got the intel and Sun stuff to work together that easily.

  11. Our stuff was at the Canix datacenter in downtown Montreal, where I had to bring it to a cage. I wonder if it’s similar?
    At any rate, building your environment in a datacenter can’t be easy as most of the time you build it and test it far before you ever put it in the cage.(unless you own the cage).
    Good luck to them. I’m surprised that they got the intel and Sun stuff to work together that easily.

  12. Zoho is not only being supportive of the community, they are a finalist in the Webware 100 for thiruite of productivity and commerce applications.

    Not only are they good guys, they are winning awards, this is good to see. They recently won the “100 Best Products of 2007 Award” from PC World.

    Zoho has quite a suite of applications available and is working on them, they are also working at being collabrative in the community.

  13. Zoho is not only being supportive of the community, they are a finalist in the Webware 100 for thiruite of productivity and commerce applications.

    Not only are they good guys, they are winning awards, this is good to see. They recently won the “100 Best Products of 2007 Award” from PC World.

    Zoho has quite a suite of applications available and is working on them, they are also working at being collabrative in the community.

  14. Please explain it to me: You are in the Zoho(!!) datacenter, helping to get Zoomr(!!) back online, and there are Google(!!) Servers?

    Why are Google servers in a Zoho datacenter? Or why are Zoho servers in a Google datacenter? I expected that they are competitors.
    And why is zoomr in the datacenter, now?!

    ??????

  15. Please explain it to me: You are in the Zoho(!!) datacenter, helping to get Zoomr(!!) back online, and there are Google(!!) Servers?

    Why are Google servers in a Zoho datacenter? Or why are Zoho servers in a Google datacenter? I expected that they are competitors.
    And why is zoomr in the datacenter, now?!

    ??????

  16. Robert,

    Can you make sure Thomas and Kristopher to get some restful sleep and warm food? Not just pizza and soda. Healthy food with vegetables. Warm tea or chocolate.

    If I am not tied up with my work load, I would have come to supply vitamin B6, B12 and antioxidants.

    I am offering our next meeting for brainstorming session for Zooomr if Zooomr needs local web community support. Adobe is giving us CS3 Workshop on Photoshop & Illustrator on Jun 27. ClickTale and CrazyEgg will be covering measurement of User Behavior on heatmap web analytics. Zooomr may benefit from it.

    Let me give you our song “Rainbow Connection” here if you need some entertainment and warm feeling. http://upcoming.yahoo.com/event/185301/

    I was jumping up and down last night when I received several boxes from Adobe, stuff Adobe giving out to our meeting night. We love Adobe!

    I am not here to advertise our event. I would like to offer our support to dreamers and builders like Thomas and Kristopher. I am a dreamer and a builder too. Our little baby group is being watched by Japanese, Chinese, Korean, European etc. You never know what you are going to get by getting Zooomr name into our little site.

  17. Robert,

    Can you make sure Thomas and Kristopher to get some restful sleep and warm food? Not just pizza and soda. Healthy food with vegetables. Warm tea or chocolate.

    If I am not tied up with my work load, I would have come to supply vitamin B6, B12 and antioxidants.

    I am offering our next meeting for brainstorming session for Zooomr if Zooomr needs local web community support. Adobe is giving us CS3 Workshop on Photoshop & Illustrator on Jun 27. ClickTale and CrazyEgg will be covering measurement of User Behavior on heatmap web analytics. Zooomr may benefit from it.

    Let me give you our song “Rainbow Connection” here if you need some entertainment and warm feeling. http://upcoming.yahoo.com/event/185301/

    I was jumping up and down last night when I received several boxes from Adobe, stuff Adobe giving out to our meeting night. We love Adobe!

    I am not here to advertise our event. I would like to offer our support to dreamers and builders like Thomas and Kristopher. I am a dreamer and a builder too. Our little baby group is being watched by Japanese, Chinese, Korean, European etc. You never know what you are going to get by getting Zooomr name into our little site.

  18. Robert, Thanks again for being such a great support to Kristopher and Thomas. It clearly as been a boost to them and shows what a great person you are. It’s great to see community come together to help Zooomr.

  19. Robert, Thanks again for being such a great support to Kristopher and Thomas. It clearly as been a boost to them and shows what a great person you are. It’s great to see community come together to help Zooomr.

  20. Thanks for keeping both Kris and Thomas company during this past week Scoble. Also, thanks for spreading the word and reminding people that generosity and giving are still cool things to do, even if it is the year 2007.

    Its always nice to hear of so many people coming together to help out others. Keep up the good work.

  21. Thanks for keeping both Kris and Thomas company during this past week Scoble. Also, thanks for spreading the word and reminding people that generosity and giving are still cool things to do, even if it is the year 2007.

    Its always nice to hear of so many people coming together to help out others. Keep up the good work.

  22. Bess, thanks. Last night he had some Chinese food. Not exactly the best, but it was better than my In-N-Out.
    Thanks for the kind thoughts.

    Regarding why Zoho is in the middle of a Google datacenter? It’s not owned by Google. It’s owned by Savvis. This used to be an Exodus data center. I bet that Google needs as much datacenter space as is available so they are renting this piece.

    All three of us last night talked about just how impressive Google’s racks are. First of all, they are just beautiful. Go watch the video about Microsoft’s data centers.

    They didn’t show many pictures, but the one that they did show showed a mixture of equipment. http://www.on10.net/Blogs/tina/microsoft-data-centers-getting-bigger-and-better/

    Google’s computers are all the same and their clusters simply LOOK beautiful. I’ve been in a few data centers and have never seen such orderliness.

    Google builds their own racks. Their computers are open motherboards that sit on a tray that slides into the rack.
    Each rack is about seven feet tall. Each one has a switch in the middle, and 10 trays below and above. Each one has two computers on it. The left side of the rack has green wires, the right side, yellow.

    It’s hard to explain without being able to show you pictures but each one has very minimal wiring. Very few fans (the open design makes cooling each board easier). And everything is based on industry standard pieces that you could buy at Fry’s.

    Oh, and I saw only Seagate drives there. Kudos for my sponsor.

    From what Raju told me these were “old” Google computers. The new ones look the same, but have faster guts and more memory.
    Oh, here’s a picture of the cluster: http://www.flickr.com/photos/skylinegtr/525952661/

    Now, imagine hundreds of these in a huge room.

    I can’t even imagine what the new huge datacenters up in Washington that Google built look like inside. But I can imagine thousands of these racks all lined up.

    There were several other companies in this datacenter as well (Microsoft just moved out, by the way, so did Netflix). But the Google ones looked the best, and the wiring work was the best designed. They also stood out because of their sameness.

    Even Zoho, which has pretty consistent equipment doesn’t have the same visual look and certainly was a small cage in a sea of Google cages (Zoho’s cage is surrounded by Google’s clusters).

    The other thing that impressed me about Google was the architecture. It’s totally decentralized. In fact, look at Sun’s Thumper machine they sent over with 48 hard drives. That’s a very centralized approach compared to Google’s approach, which is to build hundreds of thousands of industry-standard PCs (that are pretty much the same as the one inside my box here at home) and put a single hard drive on that but then cluster them into rack after rack of equipment.

    Google is doing that on a scale that I haven’t seen anyone else do yet. I’ve often read about this architecture, and have seen the first Google computers (which is sitting in the Computer History Museum) but you really don’t get the scale of what they’ve done until you sit inside a datacenter next to a rack of their equipment.

    To me it’s an awe-inspiring sight. And I wasn’t the only one who came away feeling like that. Raju and Kristopher both commented on it too.

  23. Bess, thanks. Last night he had some Chinese food. Not exactly the best, but it was better than my In-N-Out.
    Thanks for the kind thoughts.

    Regarding why Zoho is in the middle of a Google datacenter? It’s not owned by Google. It’s owned by Savvis. This used to be an Exodus data center. I bet that Google needs as much datacenter space as is available so they are renting this piece.

    All three of us last night talked about just how impressive Google’s racks are. First of all, they are just beautiful. Go watch the video about Microsoft’s data centers.

    They didn’t show many pictures, but the one that they did show showed a mixture of equipment. http://www.on10.net/Blogs/tina/microsoft-data-centers-getting-bigger-and-better/

    Google’s computers are all the same and their clusters simply LOOK beautiful. I’ve been in a few data centers and have never seen such orderliness.

    Google builds their own racks. Their computers are open motherboards that sit on a tray that slides into the rack.
    Each rack is about seven feet tall. Each one has a switch in the middle, and 10 trays below and above. Each one has two computers on it. The left side of the rack has green wires, the right side, yellow.

    It’s hard to explain without being able to show you pictures but each one has very minimal wiring. Very few fans (the open design makes cooling each board easier). And everything is based on industry standard pieces that you could buy at Fry’s.

    Oh, and I saw only Seagate drives there. Kudos for my sponsor.

    From what Raju told me these were “old” Google computers. The new ones look the same, but have faster guts and more memory.
    Oh, here’s a picture of the cluster: http://www.flickr.com/photos/skylinegtr/525952661/

    Now, imagine hundreds of these in a huge room.

    I can’t even imagine what the new huge datacenters up in Washington that Google built look like inside. But I can imagine thousands of these racks all lined up.

    There were several other companies in this datacenter as well (Microsoft just moved out, by the way, so did Netflix). But the Google ones looked the best, and the wiring work was the best designed. They also stood out because of their sameness.

    Even Zoho, which has pretty consistent equipment doesn’t have the same visual look and certainly was a small cage in a sea of Google cages (Zoho’s cage is surrounded by Google’s clusters).

    The other thing that impressed me about Google was the architecture. It’s totally decentralized. In fact, look at Sun’s Thumper machine they sent over with 48 hard drives. That’s a very centralized approach compared to Google’s approach, which is to build hundreds of thousands of industry-standard PCs (that are pretty much the same as the one inside my box here at home) and put a single hard drive on that but then cluster them into rack after rack of equipment.

    Google is doing that on a scale that I haven’t seen anyone else do yet. I’ve often read about this architecture, and have seen the first Google computers (which is sitting in the Computer History Museum) but you really don’t get the scale of what they’ve done until you sit inside a datacenter next to a rack of their equipment.

    To me it’s an awe-inspiring sight. And I wasn’t the only one who came away feeling like that. Raju and Kristopher both commented on it too.

  24. Robert,

    Thanks for the update and the great description of the google servers. Sounds very impressive.

    Also thanks for picking up Kris and getting him going at the data center.

  25. Robert,

    Thanks for the update and the great description of the google servers. Sounds very impressive.

    Also thanks for picking up Kris and getting him going at the data center.

  26. When you look at the huge numbers of these things (PC equivalents) being used I’m still drawn (due to my age I suppose) to comparisons with the old centralized mainframes. Contrary to what the Microsoft guy said in that video, reducing power consumption to a minimum as a means of optimizing your bottom line (as opposed to being “green”) is not a new idea at all. It may be new for people running rooms full of PCs however, demonstrating once again that the baton wasn’t well passed from old technologies to new.

    With a mainframe you had no choice but to leave the CPU, washing-machine sized disk drives, fans and air conditioning equipment running full blast all the time (and if you weren’t doing some form of batch processing around the clock you were doing something wrong in the capacity planning department). Your main option in power management in other words was to keep the machine doing useful work around the clock.

    With clusters (of essentially PCs) I would think more could be done in the area of putting excess capacity into sleep mode (or even powered off completely) when demand was low. But I haven’t heard anyone mention such a scheme.

    I’m also surprised more of these systems aren’t using the “blade” form factor yet. the ones I last work with were 3U with about 16 dual processor cards per row, so you could have a hundred or more processors in a standard rack space. I’ve yet to see pictures of any of the big companies (Google MS etc.) using these, but that may be because they are all only showing us pictures of their last generation technology.

    Anyway, properly set up, racks full of these things make for hot-swappable processors that can be swapped in and out without ever touching a network cable etc. But even when I saw these newer form factors in use they didn’t do anything clever about power management. All the cards ran all the time whether they were being used or not.

  27. When you look at the huge numbers of these things (PC equivalents) being used I’m still drawn (due to my age I suppose) to comparisons with the old centralized mainframes. Contrary to what the Microsoft guy said in that video, reducing power consumption to a minimum as a means of optimizing your bottom line (as opposed to being “green”) is not a new idea at all. It may be new for people running rooms full of PCs however, demonstrating once again that the baton wasn’t well passed from old technologies to new.

    With a mainframe you had no choice but to leave the CPU, washing-machine sized disk drives, fans and air conditioning equipment running full blast all the time (and if you weren’t doing some form of batch processing around the clock you were doing something wrong in the capacity planning department). Your main option in power management in other words was to keep the machine doing useful work around the clock.

    With clusters (of essentially PCs) I would think more could be done in the area of putting excess capacity into sleep mode (or even powered off completely) when demand was low. But I haven’t heard anyone mention such a scheme.

    I’m also surprised more of these systems aren’t using the “blade” form factor yet. the ones I last work with were 3U with about 16 dual processor cards per row, so you could have a hundred or more processors in a standard rack space. I’ve yet to see pictures of any of the big companies (Google MS etc.) using these, but that may be because they are all only showing us pictures of their last generation technology.

    Anyway, properly set up, racks full of these things make for hot-swappable processors that can be swapped in and out without ever touching a network cable etc. But even when I saw these newer form factors in use they didn’t do anything clever about power management. All the cards ran all the time whether they were being used or not.

  28. Alright guys.

    I will take Thomas and Kristopher on a better meal. If you guys are up for chinese food, I make sure I take you to good healthy chinese food. Robert can come along too. I can get to Sunnyvale easily.

    A good warm meal can give you better rest. Good rest can make you think better and troubleshoot better.

  29. Alright guys.

    I will take Thomas and Kristopher on a better meal. If you guys are up for chinese food, I make sure I take you to good healthy chinese food. Robert can come along too. I can get to Sunnyvale easily.

    A good warm meal can give you better rest. Good rest can make you think better and troubleshoot better.

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