Cloud

Characterizing Cloud Computing Hardware Reliability

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Executive Summary

Modern day datacenters host hundreds of thousands of servers that coordinate tasks in order to deliver highly available cloud computing services. These servers consist of multiple hard disks, memory modules, network cards, processors etc., each of which while carefully engineered are capable of failing. While the probability of seeing any such failure in the lifetime (typically 3-5 years in industry) of a server can be somewhat small, these numbers get magnified across all devices hosted in a datacenter. At such a large scale, hardware component failure is the norm rather than an exception. Hardware failure can lead to degradation in performance to end-users and can result in losses to the business.

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