World Vital Records recently added new hardware to triple our searching capacity and almost 10 times our storage capacity for images. This allows us to collect family trees and historical photos as well as post newspaper images much faster. Our images server now has over 7 terabytes of storage. All of our searching is done using 64 bit operating systems on quad processor boxes with 8 gig of ram.
In addition to bulking up our own server capacity, we are signing on with Amazon’s S3 web service so that we can basically have unlimited storage capacity as index and host genealogical record collections from around the world.
Jeff Barr (visit his blog) who evangelizes Amazon’s web services recently spoke at the Provo Labs Academy and convinced many of us there that Amazon’s huge investments in this area mean that smaller companies can utilize the vast computing and storage power that Amazon is providing to us. We love their passion for this new business. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos spoke at the Web 2.0 Summit last November and was interviewed by TechCrunch: he sounds very committed to this new line of business. I liked this comment on the TechCrunch blog:
Kalpesh Patel: “This is heaven for startups. Imagine having the power of provisioning unlimited space and unlimited computing power. You are actually building your apps using 10-15 years of experience already behind you taking care of scalability and reliability issues. I am very much excited about it. EC2 is still in infant stage but definitely has an early movers advantage in this space. I wonder VMware guys must be having nightmares when it really rocks in.”
With this kind of “unlimited space and unlimited computing power” we can offer free hosting to large non-profit genealogical organizations that have their own web sites and we can work in a flexible manner with anyone who has a large genealogical database that they want us to index, or host, or link to original images. The possibilities are just not constrained by hardware anymore.
Our team is really jazzed about our new in-house capacity and the unlimited capacity that we get through Amazon’s S3 services.