New Google Data Center Network Achieves 1 Petabit Per Second
In data center news, the typically tight-lipped Google recently provided some insight into how the vast number of servers within its data centers are interconnected. The search and data management giant unveiled its current networking protocol, named “Jupiter,” which is the fifth-generation of Google’s networking initiative.
The Jupiter system, like those before it, lies within hardware that is custom-built by Google specifically for its data centers and runs on custom networking protocols. This has resulted in relatively little available information surrounding Google data center networking practices, especially in comparison to those companies who rely on third-party hardware setups.
The revelation of Jupiter is turning heads in the tech world for several reasons, notably the remarkable speeds that Google has achieved with the most recent network. This fifth iteration of Google data center network architecture can deliver 1 Petabit per second of data across two different parts of the network. This outstanding capacity is 100 times more than what they were able to produce with their first-generation of custom-built data center networking protocols.
According to Google, Jupiter would be able to read every single document that is scanned within the Library of Congress archives in under 1/10 of a second.
According to Amin Vahdat, Google Fellow and Technical Lead for Networking, the company uses three essential principles in designing their data center network infrastructure:
We arrange our network around a Clos topology, a network configuration where a collection of smaller (cheaper) switches are arranged to provide the properties of a much larger logical switch.
We use a centralized software control stack to manage thousands of switches within the data center, making them effectively act as one large fabric.
We build our own software and hardware using silicon from vendors, relying less on standard Internet protocols and more on custom protocols tailored to the data center.
This revelation at the 2015 Open Network Summit in Santa Clara, CA has certainly garnered the attention of both journalists and engineers, but Google has still only provided scattershot details at this point. Many are hoping for the company to release a more detailed paper in the near future, providing additional insight into Google’s closely-guarded network infrastructure.