Summary of Microsoft's Data Center Event - Microsoft Set the Bar

TechHermit has three different attendees submit comments about the Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) Data Center Event. Mike Manos, Christian Belady, Daniel Costello, and the rest of the Microsoft Data Center team are changing the data center industry. 

As good as this event was, the real one people want to get into is if Microsoft does this again for its Iowa Data Center, its next generation data center.

"The facility that we have planned here in Iowa will be something special and unique," said Manos, Microsoft's general manager of data center services. "It will be the first data center that what we consider our next-generation facility."

The new center will "drive significantly better energy efficiency than any center under construction today," Manos said. "Iowa, specifically West Des Moines, was the perfect location."

They could have an event for a whole week and people would gladly pay $10,000 each to attend.

Here are comments from TechHermit's blogs.

Jenny Rator

TH -

Well we just wrapped up the second day and I am now back in my hotel room relaxing after a very busy day.   The day began for me as I visited the presentation by Microsoft Security chief and General Manager Peter Boden.  The program that Microsoft has around security, compliance, audits and the like is unlike anything I have ever seen before.   You never really think about the requirements for security and Microsoft’s program blends the logical and physical in a way that would astound most people.   Microsoft has an impressive list of certifications for their facilities, something you NEVER hear from anyone else advertising software as a service or operational accountability.  More than that, Mr. Boden shared their approach, growth and evolution on how they got there.  These were incredible lessons for those of us in the audience tasked with security requirements

I then attended a question and answer panel emceed by Michael Manos.  The panel consisted of Microsoft’s top mechanical engineers, electrical engineers, architects, and Christian Belady.  Frankly speaking this session was so information packed and the level of sharing of learnings so deep that its actually hard to describe.  You could have done an entire day with just this team and not exhausted the questions and learnings.  Everyone sitting around me agreed that you just dont get access to this type of information from ANYONE or you would have to pay an architecture and engineering company big bucks to get to talk to these kinds of people.   At lunch afterwards in one of the long hallways in the facility I talked about this session with several colleagues who were equally blown away by two key things - the forthrightness of answers and the level of sharing with the attendees. Microsoft has the most intelligent Data Center engineering organization I have ever seen.   If Microsoft ever does this again - This is a MUST ATTEND event.



Like the person who posted yesterday I thought that I would send you some of my highlevel thoughts of this event. 


Microsoft did in one event what the last three years of attending Uptime Symposiums, DATA CENTER WORLDS, and Data Center Dynamics have completely failed to do!  They shared real world examples, real data and engineering, and gave actual users exposure to real data that they could use.  They did all this in a working data center that would completely blow your mind.  The tour and the level of detail they went into on the facility design was just incredible.  Microsoft knows how to build data centers.  Dont let anyone ever tell you different.  I have been in this business for 30 years and nothing even comes close.

The Microsoft event was vastly different than anything I have ever attended before in my career.  It lacked the uppity air and pretentiousness of the Uptime events, and vastly more detailed than anything Dynamics or Data Center World would get into.  As Michael Manos told me in the hall his goal  was to have a conference “by operations people, for operations people, about operations and real world issues.”  At that they totally succeeded.   Everyone I talked to went on about the quality of the sessions and sheer amazement at their open-ness.  

In my opinion, Microsoft did more for Data Center end-users and the Data Center Community than a hundred conferences.  I know you dont want to post about the Uptime controversy anymore but if there was ever a successor to that work, my vote would be for this group to manage it.



I just wanted to send you my personal experience at the Microsoft Data Center Experience event in San Antonio as I see you have an entry about it.  The event was wonderful.   Microsoft executives and technical teams were frank, open, honest, and generally extremely generous with their time.  While we have different design criteria and operations models it was great to see how someone else has approached the same problems.   The tours of the facility, the technologies used, the engineering reasons they have done what they have done was clearly articulated to everyone.   The opening night keynote had an interesting line : ” This event is not to show anyone the right way to do datacenters, the wrong way to do datacenters, just the Microsoft way of doing datacenters.”  I have to say I was somewhat dubious that I would get a lot of sales marketing around their products but the event was all about operations and with the exception of some salesy stuff in the Virtualization track around Hyper-V it was incredibly down to earth.   one of the best events around data centers and definitely the best Microsoft event I have ever attended.  My personal kudo’s goes out to the Microsoft teams for an amazing experience.

I hope this creates pressure on Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) to open its doors or maybe people have given up on finding out anything about Google.. Has anyone else noticed how little news there is on Google's data centers?