Facebook Hacks Shipping Dock Into World-Class Server Lab

Amir Michael in the Facebook server lab that isn’t

Amir Michael works for Facebook, so it???s no surprise he???s a hacker. But he doesn???t hack software. He hacks hardware ??? and the occasional shipping and receiving room.

By the end of 2010, the shipping and receiving dock at Facebook???s Palo Alto headquarters was no longer a shipping and receiving dock. Michael and a few other Facebook engineers moved in when they needed more space for the server lab they???d already built in the storage room next door.

You could tell it used to be a shipping dock because there was a huge scale built into the floor. At one point, the scale was used to weigh packages before they were shipped out, but after Michael and his crew moved in, they used it to weigh the server they???d built from scratch. Twelve months after they first sat down to design a machine for Facebook???s new data center in Prineville, Oregon, one of them picked up the finished product and stood on the scale. Then he put it down and picked up one of those mass-produced servers the rest of the world uses.

Not what I thought at first, but still a good read.



About Matthew Peterworth

I currently work as a Technology Specialist at Henderson Engineers in Kansas City – a Mechanical-Electrical-Plumbing (MEP) design firm. Prior to that I was a Project Manager for Information Technology Services (ITS), the central IT department at the University of Texas at Austin. As of July 2008 I am a Registered Communications Distribution Designer (RCDD) through BICSI. And as of June 2011 I am a licensed Professional Engineer (PE) in the great state of Texas. Please follow me on Twitter @mpeterworth. https://twitter.com/mpeterworth

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