jm + data-centers   4

A Loud Sound Just Shut Down a Bank's Data Center for 10 Hours | Motherboard
The purpose of the drill was to see how the data center's fire suppression system worked. Data centers typically rely on inert gas to protect the equipment in the event of a fire, as the substance does not chemically damage electronics, and the gas only slightly decreases the temperature within the data center.

The gas is stored in cylinders, and is released at high velocity out of nozzles uniformly spread across the data center. According to people familiar with the system, the pressure at ING Bank's data center was higher than expected, and produced a loud sound when rapidly expelled through tiny holes (think about the noise a steam engine releases). The bank monitored the sound and it was very loud, a source familiar with the system told us. “It was as high as their equipment could monitor, over 130dB”.

Sound means vibration, and this is what damaged the hard drives. The HDD cases started to vibrate, and the vibration was transmitted to the read/write heads, causing them to go off the data tracks. “The inert gas deployment procedure has severely and surprisingly affected several servers and our storage equipment,” ING said in a press release.
ing  hardware  outages  hard-drives  fire  fire-suppression  vibration  data-centers  storage 
september 2016 by jm
Google Cloud Platform Blog: A look inside Google’s Data Center Networks
We used three key principles in designing our datacenter networks:
We arrange our network around a Clos topology, a network configuration where a collection of smaller (cheaper) switches are arranged to provide the properties of a much larger logical switch.
We use a centralized software control stack to manage thousands of switches within the data center, making them effectively act as one large fabric.
We build our own software and hardware using silicon from vendors, relying less on standard Internet protocols and more on custom protocols tailored to the data center.
clos-networks  google  data-centers  networking  sdn  gcp  ops 
june 2015 by jm
Is Google building a hulking floating data center in SF Bay?
Looks pretty persuasive, especially considering they hold a patent on the design
google  data-centers  bay-area  ships  containers  shipping  sea  wave-power  treasure-island 
october 2013 by jm
Microsoft admits US government can access EU-based cloud data
interesting point from an MS Q&A back in 2011, quite relevant nowadays:
Q: Can Microsoft guarantee that EU-stored data, held in EU based datacenters, will not leave the European Economic Area under any circumstances — even under a request by the Patriot Act?

A: Frazer explained that, as Microsoft is a U.S.-headquartered company, it has to comply with local laws (the United States, as well as any other location where one of its subsidiary companies is based). Though he said that "customers would be informed wherever possible," he could not provide a guarantee that they would be informed — if a gagging order, injunction or U.S. National Security Letter permits it. He said: "Microsoft cannot provide those guarantees. Neither can any other company." While it has been suspected for some time, this is the first time Microsoft, or any other company, has given this answer. Any data which is housed, stored or processed by a company, which is a U.S. based company or is wholly owned by a U.S. parent company, is vulnerable to interception and inspection by U.S. authorities. 
microsoft  privacy  cloud-computing  eu  data-centers  data-protection  nsa  fisa  usa 
june 2013 by jm

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