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Inside Google's Server Room: New Video Shows Insider View

Inside Google's Server Room: New Video Shows Insider View

by Stephanie Faris on Monday, March 28 6:00

Google is known as the world leader in the technology, having become one of the world s most valuable companies. With data centers around the globe powering search results, Google s many popular applications, and customer data, Google uses some of the top resources available to safeguard its servers.

Recently, Google released a 360-degree video tour of its data center in Dalles, Oregon, which can be viewed on the company s virtual reality device, Google Cardboard. Those who don t have the device can watch the tour directly in their browsers to get a look at the security infrastructure of one of the top companies in the world. Here are a few highlights of the tour.

Physical Security

From the start, the video shows just how seriously Google takes its building security. The tour host, a developer advocate on the Google Cloud platform named Sandeep, points out that most Google employees can t get into the data center. To gain entry to the complex, Sandeep must enter a code. Once he s in the building, he can only access the data center after going through a biometric scan. The doors are of circle-lock design, which lets only one employee in at a time to prevent someone sneaking in on the heels of an authorized entrant. A security guard can also be seen standing next to the door in the video.

System Design

Sandeep sits down with Noah, an engineer with the company s Site Reliability Engineering team. Noah explains that the systems have been designed from the ground up to handle any failures that might occur. This includes highly redundant power, networking, and serving domains, which means that even if one of Google s servers loses an entire cluster, data will never be impacted. Additionally, technicians are on call 24/7 to immediately respond to any problems.


Inside the server room, Sandeep interviews Virginia, one of Google s network engineers. She describes the immense scalability of Google s network, which means constantly adding capacity at the company s data centers around the globe. Google uses Jupiter because of its hierarchical design. Each of Google s buildings can support 75,000 machines carrying more than one petabit per second of bandwidth, which is more than the entire Internet.

Google s Backbone Network

Perhaps most valuable to Google s millions of users, though, is its backbone network, which houses all of the data centers in the Google ecosystem. Google s backbone network is growing faster than its Internet-facing network. The company needs to be able to consistently maintain the integrity of this network while also keeping consumers safe. When a hard drive is decommissioned, Google has an on-site hard drive shredder that destroys it to prevent the information stored on it from falling into the wrong hands.

By observing Google s processes, businesses with data centers can get a few ideas for their own network storage. They can learn from Google s innovative security measures and scalability to create server rooms that grow with them. To view the entire 360-degree tour of Google, click here.

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