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How Facebook serves pictures

I caught Facebook - Needle in a Haystack: Efficient Storage of Billions of Photos on Flowgram. First up, I’m not a big fan of Flowgrams - the format is sensible, slide and voice, is excellent, but the delivery in a web browser isn’t optimal… make downloadable videos!

The talk however, was excellent. Do watch it, and learn a bit more about Facebook’s infrastructure. Anyway, some notes I took from the talk:

  • “We’re one of the largest MySQL installations in the world”
  • Use memcache - “We have memcache because databases aren’t fast” (later on in the questions)
  • Separate team focusing on APE (Apache, PHP and Extensions that they work on)
  • 6.5 billion total images, 4-5 sizes stored for each, so 30 billion files, of about 540TB total… During peak? 475,000 images served per second, and growing by …
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