Grooveshark has outgrown Gainesville

04 May

We have just about completed moving all of our servers from Gainesville to Colo5 in Jacksonville. Why did we have to move? Bandwidth! We simply could not get a fat enough tube to handle all of your music streaming demands into Gainesville. Why Jacksonville? Because it’s cheap, and close! We were considering moving to a similar facility in Atlanta, but Colo5 came in cheaper, while offering the same sort of bandwidth that we could expect to get in Atlanta. How much bandwidth? We should have room to grow up to about 20Gbps before we will have to consider expanding to other facilities. We’re going to need a lot more servers before that can happen.

Although we now have plenty of bandwidth for the near to mid-term future, there are still plenty of other bottlenecks that are starting to pinch us, so don’t be surprised if playback is still laggy sometimes or results to buffering. The next big improvement we need to make is the “bandwidth” we get from our disks. No point having 20GBps of headroom in the tube if we can’t actually get that much off of our servers. We have several strategies we are applying to this end, and I may post more about them later if I have time.

The transition from Gainesville to Jacksonville was, of course, not as smooth as we had hoped. Everything was going along swimmingly until we went to install our crappy “downtime server” in Gainesville to let users know that we were down and why, while allowing us to take the real web servers with us. The server and router simply would not acknowledge each other’s presence. Our laptops could connect directly to either one just fine, but both thought they had no connection when interfacing directly. The solution? A crappy old Linksys hub, which both the router and server were able to see.

Loading up all of our servers containing all of our data into a UHaul was more than a little scary, but we packed everything very carefully using lots of cardboard, furniture blankets and rope. Not a single server was harmed in the moving process!

Ben got a lot of pictures of the whole event, if you’d like to see more. Big thanks to Ed, Skyler, Joe, Colin and Nate for all working so hard to make the transition as quick and painless as possible, and thanks to Paloma for driving us home and letting us sleep on the way back; we were definitely in no shape to drive after all that.


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