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Microsoft's cloud a little thin?

Although its always fun to point and laugh at the PR scaffolding holding up many blustery corporate initiatives, there some value in it beyond pure schadenfreude. As everyone rushes to play buzzword bingo by building out “cloud” environments these days, its useful to know where companies actually are versus where their slide decks say they are.

Ashlee Vance caught a glimpse under Microsoft’s skirts on the interwebs last week

A crafty web site called iStartedSomething caught Microsoft revealing its metal haul in a promotional video. The question and answer session with Chief Environmental Strategist Rob Bernard included some visual snaps detailing the power consumption, jobs and server count of a number of Microsoft data centers. When totaled all up, you find 15 data centers with 148,357 servers, 17,406 racks and a total power consumption of 72,500KW as of Jan.

Vance does some Googling and finds that, with recent, publicly announced additions, that should bring MS to about 220,000 servers.

Moving forward, however, Redmond will need to try a bit harder if it’s to meet Bill Gates’ goal of owning millions of servers.

Indeed.

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