Gmail increasing it's mailbox?

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Gmail increasing it's mailbox?

Post by L0DER on Thu Feb 12, 2009 11:52 am
([msg=17746]see Gmail increasing it's mailbox?[/msg])

Gmail increasing it's mailbox is it a trick or what?
How can they constantly increase size by bits?
Any explanations? Thanks.
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Re: Gmail increasing it's mailbox?

Post by myhexhax on Thu Feb 12, 2009 12:41 pm
([msg=17756]see Re: Gmail increasing it's mailbox?[/msg])

I'd assume it's because all of the mail is stored in their disaster-tolerant, distributed file system cluster, GFS (Google File System). As they add more servers with more space, the amount of available space in the cluster, as well as the amount of space allocated per person is increased. So the maximum size of your inbox is a percent of the % allocation to GMail from the GFS cluster(s). It's most likely just an estimate, and possibly an inflated one.

Think along the lines of fractional reserve banking. It is very possible that if everyone that had a GMail account fully utilized their 7GB, that they would run out of disk space on the cluster. Think, 7GB*1,000,000 mailboxes (guesstimate!) = 7,000,000 GB, or 7 Petabytes. To put this into perspective, Isohunt has about 1.1 petabyte of files contained in torrents indexed (cite:wiki)

BUT! They can reasonably expect that most people will not utilize the maximum storage amount of their Gmail account(s), and can say Average Usage is only 10% of our users' 7GB, so it's reasonable to assume that they will not be using all X Petabytes of disk storage, so we can advertise as having more available to the users. It isn't unthinkable to also consider the fact that they do have the storage space that they are advertising to their users, but it would be a waste of space for that to be 'allocated'.

I hope this helps, let me know if you have any questions.
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