At Flash Memory Summit (FMS 2016) this past week, Vijay Rao, Director of Technology Strategy at Facebook gave a keynote session on some of the areas that Facebook is focused on for flash storage. One thing that stood out as a significant change of direction was a move to JBOFs in their datacenters.
As you may recall, Facebook was an early adopter of (FusionIO’s) server flash cards to accelerate their applications. But they are moving away from that technology now.
Insane growth at Facebook
Why? Vijay started his talk about some of the growth they have seen over the years in photos, videos, messages, comments, likes, etc. Each was depicted as a animated bubble chart, with a timeline on the horizontal axis and a growth measurement in % on the vertical axis, with the size of the bubble being the actual quantity of each element.
Although the user activity growth rates all started out small at different times and grew at different rates during their individual timelines, by the end of each video, they were all almost at 90-100% growth, in 4Q15 (assume this is yearly growth rate but could be wrong).
Vijay had similar slides showing the growth of their infrastructure, i.e., compute, storage and networking. But although infrastructure grew less quickly than user activity (messages/videos/photos/etc.), they all showed similar trends and ended up (as far as I could tell) at ~70% growth.
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