The past is never dead.
Two years ago,
Microsoft had sunk its entire data center to the bottom pit of the Scottish sea;
it had 864 servers and around 27.6 petabytes of storage down a 117 feet deep
sea. Now, after two years, Microsoft says that this little experiment showed
that data can survive underwater.
Now you must be
wondering what was the need to throw an entire data to the bottom pit of the
ocean, isn’t it a little strange? But don’t worry, because according to the
hypothesis formulated by Microsoft’s Project Natick team, placing the servers
underwater can result in more reliable and energy-efficient data centers.
There are several
issues on land – humidity, temperature fallouts, corrosion, etc. However, when
it comes to underwater server quarters, the environment is highly controlled as
far as the temperature and crop issues are concerned. Microsoft believes that
such servers are easily developed without having to worry about the size of the
coast and area near them. They also provide better access to cloud-based
resources to nearby areas.
Microsoft has adamantly
stressed on the benefits of underwater servers. It confesses that the
underwater data centers would have one-eighth the failure rate compared to the land-based data center. This is actually a great signal, as it’s extremely
essential to have a lower rate of a power failure because it’s challenging to
service a busted server when you know it’s in an airtight container right at
the bottom pit of the ocean.
This isn’t the first
time Microsoft has tried to explore underwater
possibilities. In 2015, the company dunked a data center near the coast of California for a couple of months just to find out if computers are even
capable of surviving such a trip. The idea was to evaluate how practical this
experiment was to even further the next round of trials and to check whether
these experiments had any real-world application.