Google is way bigger than you realize

Gizmodo has posted a visual representation from Intac showing the approximate number of dedicated servers that major tech companies own. When you speak in terms of numbers, it becomes hard to comprehend just how large these server farms have become. Intel, for example, is estimated to have around 100,000 servers in its arsenal, while Facebook, AT&T, and Time Warner Cable, all fall between 20,000 and 30,000. Without being able to see these server farms with your own eyes, these statistics are merely tossed aside as nothing more than interesting facts.

It's no secret that Google is a giant. But, do people realize just how big they really are? Companies like Microsoft, Amazon, and eBay all have over 50,000 servers, though their exact numbers aren't made public. Google, by comparison, is estimated to have over 1,000,000 dedicated servers, accounting for over 2% of the servers in the world. The graphical representation below allows one to truly understand just how unbelievably huge Google is (especially compared to the other major tech giants). Get your scroll-wheel ready and take a look.

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Now, other than for HW dev purposes, why would Intel have that many servers?
Most of it's sites look simple enough, and IIRC they only serve downloads.

Also, there's almost no database-heavy stuff being run on Intel's website.

All that, or Intel's running it's servers on P1's.

This will surely need to explore further when/if Google start the whole ChromeOS files-in-cloud thing. Which makes me think do we really need to backup several times crappy photos and stuff we don't need - I know I've uploaded stuff to storage websites and never used it. Complete waste. Have a Digital Clearout Friday, clear out personal and online/cloud junk and we'd save a ton of space. And servers. And energy.

Do you think the numbers represent the number of physical servers? If so, WOW! I didn't even think companies needed that many servers!

Does anyone think that those numbers could be reduced with VMs?

In the case of google, using VMs would increase the amount of physical servers required.

To put it in perspective, 1000 servers are required to complete every google search.

jonnytabpni said,
Do you think the numbers represent the number of physical servers? If so, WOW! I didn't even think companies needed that many servers!

Does anyone think that those numbers could be reduced with VMs?

The servers at Google are just ordinary PC's. They are not the specialized IBM servers or Xeon multi-CPU servers. So, the computation power and storage cannot be compared by simply looking at the number of servers.

Wow. That's really amazing... The only thing I wonder though is where Microsoft is... I know they have to have a lot of servers...

M_Lyons10 said,
Wow. That's really amazing... The only thing I wonder though is where Microsoft is... I know they have to have a lot of servers...

Last thing i read they had 220k or so... That was in 2008 i think. And as someone mentioned above they've built a data center in Chicago which could house 300k more. So i'm guessing that they have around the same amount as Google by now.

Edited by Twisp, Apr 15 2010, 9:24am :

Two points.
a) yahoo, MS, and Amazon are not specified so its hard to put these numbers into perspective
b) take these numbers with a grain of salt

brought to you by people who need to be check for paranoia....

That's just a litany of all Google products and saying it in a way that implies it's malfeasant... quite stupid.

doublea2 said,
lol I had to keep scrolling, I though my computer was buggin out on me

I didn't even realize the box was for Google, I thought, they forgot to put Google on the graphic, whattttt??

joysleeper said,
Why Intel need so many servers?

Optimization on wiring and gate positions on a chip. Also, simulating a fully functional processor take a ridiculous amount of computation power.

joysleeper said,
Why Intel need so many servers?

i was wondering too.... What are Intel using those servers for?

I have 2 servers (4 if counting virtual servers)

Last number I know Microsoft had 218000 servers (mid 2008), they new Chicago datacenter's capacity is about 300000 servers... new San Antonio datacenter, new Redmond datacenter... I think they have at least as much servers as Google has, or if not they are probably very close.

HP/EDS - around 400000 servers

IBM - I don't know any number but I believe IBM has an enormous number of servers also (I would be surprised if they are under 500000 servers).

Also, where is Yahoo, Amazon, Oracle/Sun on this chart? There is around 50 million servers in the world and probably a big chunk of that are owned by these giants.

vette said,
Imagines a ddos attack..umm I mean...uh crap pretty colors?

Do you think people owning this kind of servers are fool? ddos is kind of history now companies secure their servers from it.

Edited by Shishant, Apr 15 2010, 8:46am :

Shishant said,

Do you think people owning this kind of servers are fool? ddos is kind of history now companies secure their servers from it.

you can never truely be secured from a good ddos attack. There is only so much load your server/firewall/dataline/whatever can handle. It is however much more difficult than it used to be.

Edited by XerXis, Apr 15 2010, 11:15am :

Do they really need 1 million plus servers? Seriously, how much crap are they pumping out into the atomsphere. Do No Evil my arse.

And Neowin has how many servers?
wasn't there an article few months back on how many servers MS has with Bing and all???
anyways who cares, we know Google is destined to own the Solar system, I can see them having server farms on the moon and Mars by the next millenium.

dimithrak said,

what did he do? that was such a sad comment!

I think you missed the pop-culture reference behind the phrase "I see what you did there".