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MacRumors
Jun 1, 2011, 08:53 AM
http://images.macrumors.com/im/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/06/01/apples-north-carolina-data-center-appears-on-google-satellite-imagery/)


http://images.macrumors.com/article-new/2011/06/maiden_data_center.jpg


As noted by Fortune (http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2011/06/01/apples-new-data-center-is-visible-at-last-from-space/), Apple's new data center outside of Maiden, North Carolina is now visible (http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&client=safari&q=maiden,+nc&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Maiden,+Catawba,+North+Carolina&gl=us&ll=35.588731,-81.262307&spn=0.015164,0.022702&t=h&z=16) on satellite imagery in Google Maps and Google Earth, lifting some of the veil of secrecy that has surrounded the project.We knew what it looked like, thanks to the local Fox TV affiliate, a trespassing photographer and a local real estate agent who conducted a couple of video flybys that ended up on YouTube.

But if you asked Google Earth or Google Maps to show you the intersection of U.S. Route 321 and Startown Road -- where the data center is located -- the current satellite imagery stopped a few yards short of the construction site. West of Startown Road, there was, as recently as two weeks ago, nothing but woods and farmland and a bit of driveway that ended abruptly in the middle of a field.We do know that the new imagery showing the data center was live at least a few days before Apple's announcement regarding an iCloud introduction, however, as we saw it over the weekend but did not make note of it as we had not determined if it was a recent development.

Speculation has suggested that Apple may have specifically been working with Google to keep imagery of the new facility off of Google Maps, but that is far from certain as Google's satellite images are updated only periodically, especially in rural areas such as this. Fueling the speculation was the fact the the facility had been located right on the boundary between satellite image data sets that showed a brief hint of the area under construction along its western edge while the remainder of site was covered by older imagery showing only fields and trees.

The new imagery shows cleared land directly to the southeast of the facility where Apple has proposed long-term plans to double the size (http://www.macrumors.com/2010/10/25/new-evidence-of-apples-plans-for-a-second-data-center-building-at-nc-site/) of the center. Also shown at the upper right at the corner of Startown Road and Elbow Road is a new Town of Maiden fire station under construction, a facility that Apple required as part of its decision to locate the data center there as the town's main fire station in the center of town a few miles away was deemed too far away for Apple's liking. The fire station is being built on a small plot of land that formerly contained a modest home that Apple purchased for $1.7 million (http://www.macrumors.com/2010/10/05/apple-preps-for-nc-data-center-launch-paid-1-7-million-to-couple-for-1-acre-plot/) last year.

Article Link: Apple's North Carolina Data Center Appears on Google Satellite Imagery (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/06/01/apples-north-carolina-data-center-appears-on-google-satellite-imagery/)



Consultant
Jun 1, 2011, 08:55 AM
Google spies probably have higher resolution images. ;)

Blakjack
Jun 1, 2011, 08:57 AM
I'd like to see a ground view, that way I could get a better view of how massive it is.

Les Kern
Jun 1, 2011, 08:57 AM
Are my nipples supposed to get hard or what? Jesus, slow news day huh?

Jyby
Jun 1, 2011, 08:57 AM
NASA can read the Bible from space BTW...

Looks very clean compared to the construction days!

slu
Jun 1, 2011, 08:59 AM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8H7 Safari/6533.18.5)

I never do this, but who cares? Really, pictures of the roof of the data center are of interest to anyone? I can't wait for data center "news" to go away. It is so boring.

Yeah, yeah, I know, don't read the article, blah blah blah.

ciTiger
Jun 1, 2011, 09:00 AM
I really don't see how this is news since we all knew about the existence of it... But hey anything to spice up the iCloud is welcome...

justinfreid
Jun 1, 2011, 09:00 AM
Where is the Apple logo? Phil Shiller must be very upset.

ten-oak-druid
Jun 1, 2011, 09:01 AM
It looks like a portable hard drive. I wonder if there are big doors on one end shaped like firewire ports? Better yet, it would be cool if there is a red light on top at the other end that comes on when the cloud goes on line and flickers to indicate read/write activity.

Westyfield2
Jun 1, 2011, 09:04 AM
I want my own Data Centre :/

Full of Win
Jun 1, 2011, 09:08 AM
Meh...my data center (my house) has been on Google maps for years.

d0minick
Jun 1, 2011, 09:08 AM
It's beautiful.....oh.. it is just a warehouse? With like, air condition, and server racks? Ohhh ok. NEXT. :D

Tones2
Jun 1, 2011, 09:13 AM
Jeez, what an interesting story and solves the mystery of what a roof on a large building looks like. Now I can sleep at night. :rolleyes:

Tony

Constable Odo
Jun 1, 2011, 09:13 AM
One down, one more to go. I can hardly wait until completion of the second building so I can put the rest of my music collection in the cloud.

the-oz-man
Jun 1, 2011, 09:13 AM
Why, o why didn't I own that modest house on the corner. I could use 1.7 million reasons to move!

iSee
Jun 1, 2011, 09:13 AM
Huh? It's a picture of the top of a building...
So... what?

BLACKFRIDAY
Jun 1, 2011, 09:14 AM
Are my nipples supposed to get hard or what? Jesus, slow news day huh?

Your nipples get hard if there's a slow news day? Interesting!

frunkis54
Jun 1, 2011, 09:15 AM
Wow you guys are a bunch of Debbie Downers. This is exciting.:D

Themaeds
Jun 1, 2011, 09:16 AM
I'd like to see a ground view, that way I could get a better view of how massive it is.

Thats what she said

rdowns
Jun 1, 2011, 09:17 AM
Worst.Front.Page.Story.Ever. :D

ironsienna
Jun 1, 2011, 09:18 AM
Why, o why didn't I own that modest house on the corner. I could use 1.7 million reasons to move!

Well I can only imagine how much the guys that owed this house got to demolish it. It seems that the street view hasn't updated yet..

http://img818.imageshack.us/img818/3559/screenshot20110601at151.png

theOtherGeoff
Jun 1, 2011, 09:18 AM
Is that a Mercedes with no license plates in the handicapped parking spot by the front door?

;-)

Small White Car
Jun 1, 2011, 09:18 AM
I'd like to see a ground view, that way I could get a better view of how massive it is.

It's pretty frick'n huge.

Check out this rough comparison I did with the Magic Kingdom in Orlando Florida:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1589713/data_disney.jpg

And here it is with the White House in DC:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1589713/data_wh.jpg

OllyW
Jun 1, 2011, 09:24 AM
Worst.Front.Page.Story.Ever. :D

It's the worst one so far today.

What about this gem (http://www.macrumors.com/2000/02/29/girls-dig-it/) from the beginning of MacRumors?

iggypod
Jun 1, 2011, 09:24 AM
Where is the Apple logo? Phil Shiller must be very upset.

Agreed. Surely marketing will slap an apple logo on that roof!

GimmeSlack12
Jun 1, 2011, 09:27 AM
Image (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/06/01/apples-north-carolina-data-center-appears-on-google-satellite-imagery/)



Hooray!

aaronptrck
Jun 1, 2011, 09:29 AM
Looks like a giant IKEA! :p

whooleytoo
Jun 1, 2011, 09:30 AM
"Many Bothan spies died to bring us these images... of a fricken' huge Data Centre that you couldn't miss even if you were looking the other way at night time." Sheesh. :p

.... on the plus side, one proton torpedo down one of those air conditioning vents and... kaboom!

Takeo
Jun 1, 2011, 09:32 AM
1.7 million for that tiny little home... nice! They never saw that payday coming!

Žalgiris
Jun 1, 2011, 09:33 AM
Umbrella Corp.,

Adidas Addict
Jun 1, 2011, 09:35 AM
It's the worst one so far today.

What about this gem (http://www.macrumors.com/2000/02/29/girls-dig-it/) from the beginning of MacRumors?

But they do :D

AidenShaw
Jun 1, 2011, 09:36 AM
NASA can read the Bible from space BTW...

Sure you don't mean NSA, not NASA?

oliversl
Jun 1, 2011, 09:41 AM
I think can see the FOX TV van outside, parked on the road. Street view is really outdated, you can see a nice field where the entrance is.

NoNothing
Jun 1, 2011, 09:42 AM
Bing Maps has had it for months. I am starting to think Google Maps is far past its prime.

acslater017
Jun 1, 2011, 09:43 AM
Huh? It's a picture of the top of a building...
So... what?

-it is intriguing that Apple and Google may have collaborated to keep their data center away from prying eyes

-any aerial imagery gives rival companies an idea of the scale of Apple's data/cloud offerings. If you can see from the street how many stories it is, multiply by the roof area, and you can get a good ballpark area of how many servers can fit in there

-it's interesting that this information is finally released half a week before WWDC. Coincidence or intentional?

mdntcallr
Jun 1, 2011, 09:44 AM
Finally two quotes i agree with:

"Many Bothan spies died to bring us these images... of a fricken' huge Data Centre that you couldn't miss even if you were looking the other way at night time." Sheesh. :p

.... on the plus side, one proton torpedo down one of those air conditioning vents and... kaboom!

Sad sidebar on this new datacenter, as large as it is, when Apple built it, they projected about 50 new full time jobs in it. so it is tons of servers literally,very few real living beings in there.

People are the new Borg collective in the Apple world?

Yes, i am sure Chinese and Russian hackers will try and work their way into Music and Video file servers in there.

Umbrella Corp.
This building is one heck of a place to ride out a zombie attack. Umbrella Corp, umm.. aka Apple, will have one heck of a big building to hide out in the Server labyrinth.

bmturney
Jun 1, 2011, 09:44 AM
Impressive... not very green... but impressive... :D

Glenn.955
Jun 1, 2011, 09:51 AM
NASA can read the Bible from space BTW...
If this is true why can't we see the Lunar Rover on the moon from earth? (Or even from a satellite...)

the8thark
Jun 1, 2011, 10:06 AM
It's the worst one so far today.

What about this gem (http://www.macrumors.com/2000/02/29/girls-dig-it/) from the beginning of MacRumors?
I agree. You never know what if what is on the Mac-Rumors front news page is good. It's total pot luck. Pick a story and hope you get lucky.

And many days all the real gems are on the 2nd page.

Small White Car
Jun 1, 2011, 10:06 AM
If this is true why can't we see the Lunar Rover on the moon from earth? (Or even from a satellite...)

Because the bible-reading satellites are in low earth orbit. We don't have stuff like that around the moon. If there was one, it could do it.

rickieschelfo
Jun 1, 2011, 10:09 AM
Any one know what the massive building just north of it is?

Rafterman
Jun 1, 2011, 10:10 AM
Are my nipples supposed to get hard or what?

It would be weird if they didn't.

batchtaster
Jun 1, 2011, 10:27 AM
I think it's interesting and noteworthy, but that's really the end of it, and the conspiracy/veil of secrecy thing is somewhat overblown. Complete or under construction, we're not going to learn anything of much value from the top of a building, any more than we get standing on the sidewalk of 1 Infinite Loop or satellite shots over Foxconn.

With the possible exception that it seems like a good place to head when the zombie apocalypse comes and the country is overrun with the undead.

Unless of course the design of the iPad 3 is going to be a virtual scale model of the data center...

Thunderhawks
Jun 1, 2011, 10:29 AM
Looks like a giant IKEA! :p

If you check out roof coverings all the suppliers have pictures like this to show how they cover entire buildings with their sprayed on membranes.

Since it's Apple they will never have any leaks:-)

jonnysods
Jun 1, 2011, 10:34 AM
They are cloning Jango Fett in there.

dakwar
Jun 1, 2011, 10:53 AM
I'm surprised there isn't a big Apple logo on the roof of that thing! (said half jokingly)

NoNothing
Jun 1, 2011, 10:57 AM
If this is true why can't we see the Lunar Rover on the moon from earth? (Or even from a satellite...)


Because we never went to the moon and the whole thing was FAKED!!!

farmboy
Jun 1, 2011, 11:39 AM
If this is true why can't we see the Lunar Rover on the moon from earth? (Or even from a satellite...)

286,000 miles is why.

lostngone
Jun 1, 2011, 11:41 AM
They even have the lawn manicured. Come on Apple lets get using this thing!

NightFox
Jun 1, 2011, 11:47 AM
Wow, the Google satellite imagery of my house is about 8 years old. Apple could build a new DC here and nobody would know about it for decades.

farmboy
Jun 1, 2011, 11:53 AM
It's pretty frick'n huge.

Check out this rough comparison I did with the Magic Kingdom in Orlando Florida:

Image (http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1589713/data_disney.jpg)

And here it is with the White House in DC:

Image (http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1589713/data_wh.jpg)

Actually I think the images are not of the same mag. Compare car sizes

mac1984user
Jun 1, 2011, 12:18 PM
Just like Sim City... I always used to build my fire stations near massive data centres. =P

deconstruct60
Jun 1, 2011, 12:32 PM
The new imagery shows cleared land directly to the southeast of the facility where Apple has proposed long-term plans to double the size (http://www.macrumors.com/2010/10/25/new-evidence-of-apples-plans-for-a-second-data-center-building-at-nc-site/) of the center.


Or you could go back to the early photos posted here on MacRumors and see that this land was where the construction trailers, cars, trucks, etc. were parked while the building was put together.

And that land was "downhill" from the current building. ( sure they could regrade that plot).

And that cleared plot is smaller than the current building.

If they did a twin ( no really good reason to "twin" a building that large on the exact same site), closer to a public road is a bad plan.

globalhemp
Jun 1, 2011, 01:34 PM
Very large facility, yet only around 60 parking spaces. Therefore, one could speculate that such a facility will be largely controlled from remote location(s).

This of course makes a lot of sense when one factors in that the tech facility is located in a rural area -- not one where many software/hardware engineers are expected to be around.

Also, due to the rural location, one should expect it to not be any sort of call center, filled with non-engineer workers performing tasks such as tech support, customer services, etc.

The facility is "centrally located" for the East Coast (Maine -- Florida) with the possibility of a "sister" facility (currently) located in Silicon Valley to serve the West Coast (Washington, Oregon, California).

No such facility is known for Central US (Denver - Austin, TX - Chicago).

Meandmunch
Jun 1, 2011, 01:46 PM
I think it is both weird and cool that there is so little parking for a facility so large. Only one explanation for that, Skynet grows within...

scottsjack
Jun 1, 2011, 02:06 PM
That anything suddenly shows up on Google is hardly news. A lot of what's shown is rather old. New intern at the MacRumors office who is unfamiliar with Google Maps?

AidenShaw
Jun 1, 2011, 02:27 PM
Actually I think the images are not of the same mag. Compare car sizes

Maybe Apple employees in North Carolina all drive tiny Smart Cars?

hegor
Jun 1, 2011, 03:10 PM
Very little parking!

localoid
Jun 1, 2011, 03:50 PM
Very little parking!

"North Carolina said the Apple server farm will have about 50 full-time employees."

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-10256583-37.html

microcolt
Jun 1, 2011, 04:05 PM
Is it just me or does the birds-eye-view make it look like the inside of an iPhone 4 with headphones attached to it??

Fast Shadow
Jun 1, 2011, 05:24 PM
Modern data centers are lights out, meaning they have very few dedicated people on-site.

AppleScruff1
Jun 1, 2011, 06:30 PM
Are my nipples supposed to get hard or what? Jesus, slow news day huh?

If you were a true Apple fan, you'd at least have a semi.

caspersoong
Jun 1, 2011, 08:21 PM
Seems like Apple doesn't want to pay Google to keep it secret anymore.

hrishidev
Jun 1, 2011, 10:32 PM
Micheal Scofield has already planned escape route there
:D

PinkyMacGodess
Jun 2, 2011, 06:28 AM
[SIZE=1]I never do this, but who cares? Really, pictures of the roof of the data center are of interest to anyone? I can't wait for data center "news" to go away. It is so boring.

You don't see the machine gun nests at each corner? The fence with razor wire? The kennel with the dogs?

Yeah, lets whip this picture up into a froth of nothingness. Looks like no parking lot unless that huge brown dirt area has been asphalted post picture, but how many people would the place need...

One thing that is pissing me off is the way that the Google Maps screens auto-zoom and move around. Is this a feature of the 'Magic Mouse', and if so, how can I kill it?

PinkyMacGodess
Jun 2, 2011, 06:30 AM
Maybe Apple employees in North Carolina all drive tiny Smart Cars?

Or maybe to add a level of 'Area 51' to it, a bus picks up the employees in the dark and delivers them to the center and then drops them off after dusk... :D

steadysignal
Jun 2, 2011, 07:08 AM
Very little parking!

what do they need the parking for - couple of net admins could keep that place humming along ;)

(j/k)

peteroyle
Jun 2, 2011, 07:20 AM
It looks like a massive chip. Fractal!

PinkyMacGodess
Jun 2, 2011, 07:43 AM
what do they need the parking for - couple of net admins could keep that place humming along ;)

(j/k)

AND do it remotely too...

Steve121178
Jun 2, 2011, 07:57 AM
It's pretty frick'n huge.

Check out this rough comparison I did with the Magic Kingdom in Orlando Florida:

Image (http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1589713/data_disney.jpg)

And here it is with the White House in DC:

Image (http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1589713/data_wh.jpg)

Phwoar! Those pics have given me a huge chubby!

shartypants
Jun 2, 2011, 10:23 AM
What? No Apple logo on the roof? :)

mlts22
Jun 2, 2011, 12:02 PM
"North Carolina said the Apple server farm will have about 50 full-time employees."

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-10256583-37.html

If I were to hazard a guess of what equipment they would be using, it likely would be IBM Power Series 795 boxes coupled with a large amount of DS8000 based SANs. These are nice because AIX machines require a lot of thought for the initial configuration and planning, but once you get the sysplans made, it isn't hard to clone a bunch of these. I can see an onsite admin staff of 50-60 people. It would boil down to:

3-4 IBM CEs for changing out equipment with a stash on site.
5 AIX admins.
1-2 Cisco reps for hardware.
5 network guys.
5-7 for building management (security, electrical, chillers, CRACs, toilets, etc.)
5-10 security guards on site.
1-2 general managers for the above.

Deelron
Jun 2, 2011, 01:08 PM
Wow, the Google satellite imagery of my house is about 8 years old. Apple could build a new DC here and nobody would know about it for decades.

Exactly. The Google map of my home still shows the dead grass in the front from when I purchased it years ago, and I don't exactly live in a rural area.

insider-man
Aug 20, 2011, 06:56 AM
If I were to hazard a guess of what equipment they would be using, it likely would be IBM Power Series 795 boxes coupled with a large amount of DS8000 based SANs. These are nice because AIX machines require a lot of thought for the initial configuration and planning, but once you get the sysplans made, it isn't hard to clone a bunch of these. I can see an onsite admin staff of 50-60 people. It would boil down to:

3-4 IBM CEs for changing out equipment with a stash on site.
5 AIX admins.
1-2 Cisco reps for hardware.
5 network guys.
5-7 for building management (security, electrical, chillers, CRACs, toilets, etc.)
5-10 security guards on site.
1-2 general managers for the above.


Well your guess is completely out.

Think Linux, think VMs - although you would be correct in the make of servers but not the models, thinks blades and think a shared fabric network.