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Cloud Data Storage

Amazon: a Single Disaster Made Us Rethink Our Cloud Supply Chain (datacenterfrontier.com) 37

1sockchuck writes: At this week's AWS re:Invent conference, Amazon Web Services introduced new features and looked ahead to a future in which enterprise computing shifts to the cloud. But AWS also looked back at how a disaster reshaped its supply chain. In 2011, an unusually heavy monsoon season led to massive flooding in Thailand, which at the time manufactured nearly half of the world's supply of hard disk drives (HDDs). Prices soared and shortages developed, and Amazon's usual vendors were unable to deliver the volume the company sought to support its fast-growing cloud computing platform. "When a single flood hits half the manufacturing supply, and you don't have a direct relationship with suppliers, it turns out to be hard to get what you need," said AWS executive Jerry Hunter. So AWS executives jumped on a plane, flew to Thailand, and began building direct relationships that would support their shift to company-built hardware.
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Amazon: a Single Disaster Made Us Rethink Our Cloud Supply Chain

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 09, 2015 @06:08PM (#50696173)

    Seems ironic.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Had my own personal cloud last night. It's wild what a tin of baked beans will produce. Careful with those matches.

  • by PRMan ( 959735 ) on Friday October 09, 2015 @07:08PM (#50696441)
    I looked at the time, and Intel lost so much money on CPUs and motherboards that they would have been better off upgrading people to SSDs for free.
  • And nothing changed (Score:4, Informative)

    by guruevi ( 827432 ) <.eb.ebucgnikoms. .ta. .ive.> on Friday October 09, 2015 @07:15PM (#50696461) Homepage

    So they flew to Thailand and cut out the middle man. Besides a small savings on their purchases, the next monsoon they'll still be without their drives. The problem wasn't that the distributors were piling up stocks, it's that they were physically unable to manufacture them.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Yeah.. re-thinking would be finding a way to source their storage needs that was less geographically centralized.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      What's funny is that I've heard from people inside one of the big drive manufacturers (mid-level management based in Thailand) that production capacity wasn't really impacted by the flooding at all. They said it was more of a psychological and market-reaction storm than anything else.

    • The problem wasn't that the distributors were piling up stocks, it's that they were physically unable to manufacture them.

      Nope, the problem was that Amazon couldn't get ahold of the first ones manufactured when they did get going again. Timing matters.

      You build relationships to call in favors. The minor price savings of "no middle-man" was just a side-effect.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    They could have just bought the drives from Amazon.

    Right?

  • You can skip this one. The linked article contains nothing more about hard disk supply, it just explains what Amazon Snowball is.

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