I had a chance to see the GeoCities Exodus 1 cage in 2000 when I was at eBay Payments.
It used LaCie JBOD stacked to the ceiling as storage devices, and a 3′ diameter floor fan to move the hot air to other customers’ cages. 🙂
$50 Floor Fan Protecting $millions in GeoCities equipment from outside their colo cage. What could go wrong?
Their cage left an impression on me, and demonstrated how:
- ghetto colo can work
- cages can achieve very high densities
- devices can work at very high temperatures for extended time intervals
- to work your colo provider (there’s no way they got prior approval for that floor fan!)
Below is some photos of one of their cages with Sun and Netapp gear:
Note their use of Veritas Volume Manager.
Until around 1998, linux did not have a journalled filesystem. I started evaluating Reiserfs 3 on Suse Linux at that time on my personal machine. A Suse salesrep a decade later refused to believe that anybody in the USA could have been using Suse back then. 🙂
The other cage from 2000 that left an impression on me was About.com’s, which had a Sun E10k server ($2 million each fully populated). I don’t think they ever launched a product, yet they had the same equipment as eBay’s main cage.
I was talking to some other sysadmins with gear at Exodus 3 and 4, and they mentioned a lot of customers also built out their colo but never launched.