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Facebook thinks server-makers “don’t get it”

by Scott Bicheno on 26 June 2009, 12:08

Tags: Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), AMD (NYSE:AMD), Facebook

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qast4

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Pull your socks up

At the recent Structure 09 cloud computing event Facebook technical operations VP, Jonathan Heiliger, expressed dissatisfaction with the latest server processors from Intel and AMD and the servers currently on offer from leading OEMs.

"The biggest thing I think that surprised us was...less than anticipated performance gains from new...CPUs from guys like Intel and AMD," said Heilger. "The performance gains they're touting in the press are not what we're seeing in our applications and we're...trying to figure out why. Otherwise we're left with current generation technology."

Additionally, Heiliger stressed how important power savings are to a company like Facebook, which has massive power and infrastructure costs. He thinks flash storage is going to be big. "Flash is going to have a very significant effect...as much as going from single core to multi core CPUs," he said.

Heiliger saved his best broadside for the OEMs and server makers in the audience. "You guys don't get it," he denounced. "To build servers for companies like Facebook and Amazon and other people who are operating fairly homogeneous applications, the servers need to be cheap and super power efficient. And that doesn't just mean putting in a really efficient power supply - it means going all the way from the wall outlet to the processor."

Looks like the server community has some work to do if it's going to please one of its biggest customers.

 



HEXUS Forums :: 17 Comments

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How utterly unspecific, and unhelpful.
To me that sounded like:
"WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Our badly writen code/horrible applications don't run twice as fast when we get a 10% faster CPU!"

Could just be my ingrained loathing of facebloat
Arthran
To me that sounded like:
"WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Our badly writen code/horrible applications don't run twice as fast when we get a 10% faster CPU!"

Exactly. They can't just throw bigger/faster multicore/multithreaded CPUs at a half-assed PHP application and expect a massive performance increase with zero effort on their part. They need to optimise both their app, and infrastructure if they want real performance gains.
"Top Facebook techie Jonathan Heiliger"

Who? l2c (learn to code :D)
Heiliger saved his best broadside for the OEMs and server makers in the audience. "You guys don't get it," he denounced

To me it sounds like FB just order servers from a catalogue.

Do what Google do and cosy up to some manufacturers, not some OEMs. Then you can get your own systems built. This has been covered extensively in recent months.