Microsoft's supersize data center plans

Software company is rumored to be adding 12 million square feet of data center space to support its colonization of the Web.

We are in the midst of the digital land grab for Internet users. And a key building block to serve those billions of users on the planet is tens of thousands of servers in data centers processing the bits.

Nick Carr has received hints that Microsoft intends to build out two dozen data centers of about 500,000 square feet or more in size. He said that it was unclear as to when the data centers would be built.

Rich Miller at Data Center Knowledge gives the rumored 12 million square feet of data center space some context:

That's equivalent to filling 65 Wal-Mart Supercenters with servers. It would be a computing footprint more than twice the size of the Vatican; an expansion more than half-again as large as IBM's entire 8 million square feet of data center space. And Nick uses the term "first phase."

It should be noted that this 12 million square foot data center plan is not confirmed. But it is in the realm of reality considering Microsoft's ambition to duplicate its 20th century success in this century. In this cloud era, Microsoft could be one of the biggest customers of its enterprise own software.

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