The Ten Largest Data Centers

Many of us use the internet daily without thinking about what goes on behind the scenes; we simply assume that technology will work, and we are frustrated when a site does not respond a split second after we make a request, or our favorite web site disappears from existence. In fact, the internet has increased in usage over 566% between 2000 and 2012, according to Internet World Stats Data centers have integrated themselves into our lives, and are responsible for most of the web’s traffic, and by extension, the internets down time. Here are some details about the ten largest data centers.

  1. Lakeside Technology Center, Chicago

Weighing in at 1.1 million square feet, this data center is not only notable for its size, but also its architecture.  Created from an old building created to house printing presses, this huge data center has retained its architectural heritage while becoming a first rate data center, hosting things like the Chicago Commodity Market.

  1. The Super NAP, Las Vegas

The Super NAP by Switch  Communications is located in Las Vegas, Nevada, and boasts 407,000 square feet of server space, and 7000 cabinets. Most notable about this data center is its claim to run at 1500 watts a square foot, which is two – three times more than most processing centers.

  1. Microsoft’s Data Centers

One should not be surprised to see Microsoft in the largest data center list; the company moved from third party servers to its own data centers in 2007, first producing a data center in Quincy, Washington, and then a sister station in San Antonio, TX. Each data center is capable of storing 3.7 trillion photos. That’s a lot of cute cat pictures!

  1. DuPont Fabros Data Center, Chicago, Ill.

Coming in with 350,000 square feet, this data center in Chicago is the home to companies like Server Central and RackSpace Hosting. Also notable are its backup power sources: 32 two megawatt diesel generators and 200,000 gallons of diesel storage.

  1. Phoenix Data Center

This data center in Phoenix, Arizona features a full complement of solar panels that can generate up to 4.5 megawatts of electricity. This facility was originally the home of a now-bankrupted beverage company, so in addition to the data center, there is a large amount of office space.

  1. Microsoft Dublin

Built to house Microsoft’s European Cloud Computing platform, this data center features up to date cooling and heating systems to optimize performance.

  1. Microsoft Chicago

Another Microsoft data center in Chicago runs their “Live” services, this data center houses a great deal of its racks in steel shipping containers, offering 112 containers filled with 224,00 servers.

  1. Next Generation Data Center, Wales

This Welsh data center was originally built to house an LG semiconductor plant, but was abandoned. This 750,000 square meter plant houses thousands of servers, with room for plenty more.

  1. NAP of the Americas, Miami

This six story behemoth was built before huge was applied to data centers back in 2001. After it survived the dot com bust, it went on to become a part of the infrastructure for the US military and boasts the ability to withstand a Category 5 earthquake.

  1. The QTS Metro Data Center

990,000 square feet and formerly a distribution center for Sears, this giant data center only has 560,000 square feet occupied with servers. Currently 130,000 more feet are going to be filled with servers after the company raise $150 million in private funds last fall.
With all the hosting, cloud computing and database space companies being created every day, these data centers are sure to be around for quite some time; ever expanding as the need for data permeates every part of our lives.


A Look At Awesome Data Centers – An infographic by the team at WhoIsHostingThis.com

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