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Google Engineer Urs Hölzle reveals one of Google's data center bills from 1998

Urs Hölzle, the Senior Vice President of technical infrastructure at Google, posted an image of the company's first data center bills from 15 years ago.




Hölzle was one of the company's first engineers, and he also shared some information about what Google's server room looked like in 1998. He was taken on a tour of the Exodus data center, by Larry Page, who co-founded Google.


Hölzle had not joined the company at the time of the tour. When he stepped into the server room, he saw two cages,one very tiny, and another which was three times the size of the former. These cages held the 51 servers which Google owned at that time. He also said that some of the servers ran on a Pentium II CPU.


Even though the search engine giant now pays millions of dollars for their bandwidth and storage, this bill from 1998 will probably surprise you. Their monthly bill costed just $8,850.


Google - Internet Data Services Bill from 1998


In his post, Hölzle says that "A megabit cost $1200/month and we had to buy two, an amount we didn't actually reach until the summer of 1999."


Here is some interesting bit of information we read at the post. The data center was one of the first colocation facilities (server cages, storage equipment,etc.) in  San Francisco's Silicon Valley. The Google data center's neighbors included eBay, and search engine rival companies Digital Equipment Corporation who owned AltaVista, and the Inktomi Corporation, which powered the Yahoo search engine.


via Washington Post.