By Stewart Townsend on Dec 21, 2009
Last.fm is a great case of a Sun Startup Essential customer starting off two years ago by discussing their architecture, and how could Sun help them as a startup, well two years down the line we have saved them money, reduced their output and helped them scale beyond boundaries they didnt think feasible, Mike Brodbelt explains their latest success using SSD's to stream to a new audience, XBOX LIVE.
The music streaming architecture at Last.fm is an area of our infrastructure that has been scaling steadily for some time. The final stage of delivering streams to users fetches the raw mp3 data from a MogileFS distributed file system before passing it through our audio streaming software, which handles the actual audio serving. There are two main considerations with this streaming system: physical disk capacity, and raw IO throughput. The number of random IO operations a storage system can support has a big effect on how many users we can serve from it, so this number (IOPS) is a metric we’re very interested in. The disk capacity of the cluster has effectively ceased being a problem with the capacities available from newer SATA drives, so our biggest concern is having enough IO performance across the cluster to serve all our concurrent users. To put some numbers on this, a single 7200rpm SATA drive can produce enough IOPS to serve around 300 concurrent connections.[Read More]