Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Facebook uses 10,000 Blu-ray discs to store 'cold' data

Facebook uses 10,000 Blu-ray discs to store 'cold' data. Jon Brodkin. Ars Technica. Jan 29, 2014.
Facebook showed a prototype of its Blu-ray data-center storage system at the Open Compute Project summit meeting, which it plans to expand to 5 PB. The system was designed to store data that hardly ever needs to be accessed, or for so-called “cold storage.”  The Blu-ray system reduces costs by 50 percent and energy use by 80 percent compared with its current cold-storage system, which uses hard disk drives.

Why Facebook thinks Blu-ray discs are perfect for the data center. Jon Brodkin. Ars Technica. Jan 31, 2014.
While the Blu-ray storage system is just a prototype, Facebook hopes to get it in production sometime this year and share the design with the Open Compute Project community to spur adoption elsewhere.
"Economies of scale could take over really quickly, and they could start producing those discs for the Open Compute community at much lower cost than they do today because, believe it or not, this is one of those areas where really high-capacity Blu-ray discs are in relatively low demand on the consumer side and in relatively high demand on the data center side."
"Each disc is certified for 50 years of operation; you can actually get some discs that are certified for 1,000 years of reliability. Because the media is separate from the drives, if you ever have a drive issue, you simply replace the drive, and you won't have to replace the data within a disc. From a reliability and operational standpoint it's quite elegant and efficient."
"A large portion of that is going to be warm to cold data, and we need something better than tape and disk to store it."