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Something fishy: Microsoft data centre installs undersea webcam

Image: Adobe Stock / Connect world

Ever wanted to watch fish swim past a data centre with 27.6 petabytes of storage? Well now you can you lucky thing. Microsoft has installed a webcam next to its undersea data centre, offering live views of all the fish that are deciding to check out its storage capabilities.

Microsoft originally sunk the data centre off the Scottish coast in June to determine whether the company could save energy by using the sea as a natural means of cooling. Good thinking guys.

Microsoft has been experimenting with undersea data centres for years, and the current installation in the Orkney Islands will be deployed for around five years. There are 12 racks with 864 servers and 27.6 petabytes (27,600 terabytes) of storage.

The data centre is powered by a giant undersea cable that also connects it back to the internet, and the findings could mean the company will scale this project up to more powerful data centres in the future.

The webcam itself isn’t just in place for fish to vest their interest in cloud data and artificial intelligence however, and there is method to the madness. Microsoft is using the camera to observe the environmental conditions near its data centre as part of an experiment, and of course to monitor just how well it is rusting.

If you do happen to be interested in watching the live feed you can check it out over at Microsoft’s Project Natick site.

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