Coding Horror

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Google Hardware circa 1999

The always entertaining Dan linked to something I hadn't seen before-- an archived page of the Google server hardware circa 1999:

Google Hardware, circa 1999

Here it is in all its, uh, glory. I don't know what's more impressive, the two dual Pentium II 300 servers, or the 90gb SCSI drive array made from Duplo blocks. Here's a summary of all the systems listed on that page:

  • 2-proc Pentium II 300mhz, 512mb, five 9gb drives
  • 2-proc Pentium II 300mhz, 512mb, four 9gb drives
  • 4-proc PPC 604 333mhz, 512mb, eight 9gb drives
  • 2-proc UltraSparc II 200mhz, 256mb, three 9gb drives, six 4gb drives
  • Disk expansion, eight 9gb drives
  • Disk expansion, ten 9gb drives

That's a total of:

  • 1792 megabytes of memory
  • 366 gigabytes of disk storage
  • 2933 megahertz in 10 CPUs

Humble beginnings, indeed. I'm trying to remember the first time I used Google, and I think it had to be sometime in 2000. This motley bunch of hardware grew to own the internet in a little more than five years. That's incredible.

Written by Jeff Atwood

Indoor enthusiast. Co-founder of Stack Overflow and Discourse. Disclaimer: I have no idea what I'm talking about. Find me here: