Exclusive: First Look Inside the HP POD Data Centers

I traveled down to Houston today to check out a data center geek’s version of paradise — the inside of the factory where HP builds their rack-mounted servers and high-value blade systems. I shot plenty of photos that show how a bunch of chips and boards gets assembled into a blade that I will put in a later post, but I also got to take a tour of the inside of HP’s containerized data center, known as a POD. “Tour” isn’t really the right word, since it’s hard to move around inside the 40-foot shipping container filled with racks, but it was pretty sweet to see all that processing power in one place.

I’ve embedded a three-minute video below with Wade Vinson, a thermal engineer with HP, and pasted a few photos of the outside of the factory. HP isn’t the only company filling shipping containers full of servers to save power and space; Sun Microsystems and Rackable are doing it as well. And IBM and Dell have indicated that they plan to get into the market as companies seek to place computing in remote locations or build out their data centers rapidly.