Apple woos data center guru away from rival Microsoft

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
The man who helped build data centers for Microsoft's cloud operations is said to have left the Redmond, Wash., software giant to work for Apple.



Kevin Timmons, general manager of datacenter services at Microsoft, has left the company to pursue other career opportunities. And according to Data Center Knowledge, Timmons is headed to Apple, but his position and responsibilities are not known.



The report indicated that Timmons will not fill the position vacated by the passing of Olivier Sanche last year. Sanche, Apple's global data center director, died suddenly last November. He oversaw Apple's preparations for its $1 billion North Carolina data center, which the company has said is on track to open this spring.



Timmons reportedly sought to drastically reduce data center costs by as much as 50 percent during his tenure with Microsoft. He also played a key role in the Windows maker's latest data center in Quincy, Wash., which features a lightweight exterior filled with highly customizable containers that are packed with servers, storage, and power and cooling infrastructure.



"Timmons has forged a reputation for building efficient Internet-scale data centers on a budget," author Rich Miller wrote. "At Microsoft, Timmons oversaw the deployment of massive new data centers in Dublin and Chicago shortly after his arrival in mid-2009, but then moved to streamline the company's data center design and cost structure."



Prior to working at Microsoft, Timmons was vice president of operations at Yahoo, where he also oversaw build-out of data centers and infrastructure.



Kevin Timmons speaks at a 2010 event in Quincy, Wash. Photo via Data Center Knowledge.



Apple is expected to introduce a major overhaul of its MobileMe Internet application service this year. According to The Wall Street Journal, the cloud-based service will add a digital "locker" that would store personal files such as photos, music and videos, and that content could be streamed to Internet-connected devices like iPhones.



AppleInsider first reported on Wednesday that Apple is assembling a small team that will build "the future of cloud services" from the company. And in December, Apple revealed it was expanding its cloud-based services for iOS devices like the iPhone and iPad.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 39
    imoanimoan Posts: 56member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    The man who helped build data centers for Microsoft's cloud operations is said to have left the Redmond, Wash., software giant to work for Apple.



    To the cloud!



    When are they going to open this thing anyway?? It takes forever for a movie rental to stream to my Apple TV and I'm hoping this will improve after the data center opens.
  • Reply 2 of 39
    bwinskibwinski Posts: 164member
    Another one of Balmer's Flying Monkeys gets a new jug of Apple-Aide.... Har..Har...Har....
  • Reply 3 of 39
    myapplelovemyapplelove Posts: 1,515member
    I can't wait for the new mm, can anyone?
  • Reply 4 of 39
    cvaldes1831cvaldes1831 Posts: 1,832member
    I've no choice but to wait.
  • Reply 5 of 39
    bloggerblogbloggerblog Posts: 1,796member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by iMoan View Post


    To the cloud!



    When are they going to open this thing anyway?? It takes forever for a movie rental to stream to my Apple TV and I'm hoping this will improve after the data center opens.



    My vids stream fine. Try getting a fasted connection 10Mbps+ and wiring your ATV to your router will give you a big speed boost even if you're wireless over an 'n' WiFi network.
  • Reply 6 of 39
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bloggerblog View Post


    My vids stream fine. Try getting a fasted connection 10Mbps+ and wiring your ATV to your router will give you a big speed boost even if you're wireless over an 'n' WiFi network.



    You may want to factor in Thunderbolt technology into your thinking. It is coming (probably) to all Apple devices ... max data rates are 20 mbs ... full bidirectional. Mini-display port is a key port in all of the standard Macs. Mobile Apple devices will likely use the 30 pin common port with the newly announced Thunderbolt adapter.
  • Reply 7 of 39
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bloggerblog View Post


    My vids stream fine. Try getting a fasted connection 10Mbps+ and wiring your ATV to your router will give you a big speed boost even if you're wireless over an 'n' WiFi network.





    I only watch Netflix, I mean try to watch Netflix. So many stalls and rebufferings that it is basically unwatchable. I'm very suspicious of my cable company. I think they may be intentionally screwing with my connection to Netflix because everything else is really fast. Unless Netflix servers are that overloaded. Hard to tell without poking around into the network packets.
  • Reply 8 of 39
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Apple woos data center guru away from Microsoft for cloud services



    A more accurate title for this article would likely be: Another rat flees the sinking ship that is Microsoft for the safety and comfort of the rising star Apple
  • Reply 9 of 39
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    I only watch Netflix, I mean try to watch Netflix. So many stalls and rebufferings that it is basically unwatchable. I'm very suspicious of my cable company. I think they be intentionally screwing with my connection to Netflix because everything else is really fast. Unless Netflix servers are that overloaded. Hard to tell without poking around into the network packets.



    Well that would make you believe it is Netflix's servers, and not Apple's.
  • Reply 10 of 39
    bobringerbobringer Posts: 105member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by iMoan View Post


    To the cloud!



    When are they going to open this thing anyway?? It takes forever for a movie rental to stream to my Apple TV and I'm hoping this will improve after the data center opens.



    Yep... my video from Apple streams instantly. The bottleneck is not @ Apple.
  • Reply 11 of 39
    _hawkeye__hawkeye_ Posts: 139member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Timmons reportedly sought to drastically reduce data center costs by as much as 50 percent during his tenure with Microsoft.?



    "Timmons has forged a reputation for building efficient Internet-scale data centers on a budget," author Rich Miller wrote.



    Wonder if he used Unix in the data center?? or if he was hobbled by servers running Windoze?
  • Reply 12 of 39
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PatsFan83 View Post


    Well that would make you believe it is Netflix's servers, and not Apple's.



    Well. I'm just implying that there may be major media wars in the making as all of these companies are trying to grab or keep market share. The FCC is going to have to get involved big time. Cable and wireless consolidation, digital downloads versus pay-per-view, etc. It is going to get ugly. Apple may have the best data center out there but if the major delivery channels screw with your connection, it doesn't work. Net Neutrality is a political hot potato.
  • Reply 13 of 39
    [greg][greg] Posts: 78member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    I only watch Netflix, I mean try to watch Netflix. So many stalls and rebufferings that it is basically unwatchable. I'm very suspicious of my cable company. I think they may be intentionally screwing with my connection to Netflix because everything else is really fast. Unless Netflix servers are that overloaded. Hard to tell without poking around into the network packets.



    I'm a netflix-only user myself. No problems whatsoever. My ATV is not wired. I have "regular" roadrunner, and an Airport Extreme Base Station.
  • Reply 14 of 39
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by _Hawkeye_ View Post


    Wonder if he used Unix in the data center?? or if he was hobbled by servers running Windoze?



    Probably Windows but it wouldn't matter in data center design, the OS is irrelevant.
  • Reply 15 of 39
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by madhatter61 View Post


    You may want to factor in Thunderbolt technology into your thinking. It is coming (probably) to all Apple devices ... max data rates are 20 mbs ... full bidirectional. Mini-display port is a key port in all of the standard Macs. Mobile Apple devices will likely use the 30 pin common port with the newly announced Thunderbolt adapter.



    I don?t expect to see Thunderbolt in their routers. Besides other issues, the distance is too short for the cooper Thunderbolt compared to Ethernet. Maybe if gets cheap enough and optical in introduced, but I think that timeframe is option is too far away to even begin to consider.
  • Reply 16 of 39
    bobringerbobringer Posts: 105member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    Well. I'm just implying that there may be major media wars in the making as all of these companies are trying to grab or keep market share. The FCC is going to have to get involved big time. Cable and wireless consolidation, digital downloads versus pay-per-view, etc. It is going to get ugly. Apple may have the best data center out there but if the major delivery channels screw with your connection, it doesn't work. Net Neutrality is a political hot potato.



    mstone, absolutely. I am a died in the wool Republican until they address technology issues. They were/are wrong about Microsoft 15 years ago and they are wrong here.



    The GOP mistakingly believes there is a free market in content distribution. There is NOT. There is ZERO competition. I have Cablevision. I have no other option. I need to use their GARBAGE cable box and where I want to use a Tivo box, my service is crippled on that box (limit # of HD channels). It is impossible for new competitors to pop up (ask the CLEC's of 10 years ago).



    The current system is SLOWING innovation, not helping it. Apple has mostly avoided this game for exactly the reasons I mentioned (despite the amazing technology they could put in the living room). Sometimes congressional Republicans always take the position that ANY regulation in this area is bad without actually knowing the issues. Then again... congressional Democrats take the opposite position without knowing the issues (hence our Ethanol mess).



    Ok... rant over. Back to being a Republican.
  • Reply 17 of 39
    _hawkeye__hawkeye_ Posts: 139member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bobringer View Post


    I am a died in the wool Republican



    Condolences.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bobringer View Post


    The GOP mistakingly believes?



    ?a lot of things.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bobringer View Post


    Sometimes congressional Republicans always take the position?



    Which is it: Sometimes, or always?



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bobringer View Post


    Then again... congressional Democrats take the opposite position without knowing the issues (hence our Ethanol mess).



    I'll grant you that the Democrats aren't any better. The just ?aren't as bad,? in my opinion. Until we have a viable third party to mix things up a bit, we'll have nothing but nonsensical partisan politics, petty bickering, and gridlock in Washington, D.C. It was bad before, but it's getting a lot worse now.



    I don't like the Democrats very much, but am getting ever so tired of Republican hypocrisy and revisionist history. Whenever the GOP has been in power in recent decades, we've run up astronomical deficits, trashed environmental regulations, and deregulate critical systems which lead things like the airline traffic control mishaps, and the Great Recession/World Economic Crisis.



    <rant> Democrats may be bad? but Republicans are worse! </rant>



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bobringer View Post


    Back to being a Republican.



    Back to condolences.
  • Reply 18 of 39
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,588member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by _Hawkeye_ View Post


    <rant> Democrats may be bad? but Republicans are worse! </rant>



    Whoever you vote for the government always gets in (and as we all know deep down government is run by corporate interest groups)
  • Reply 19 of 39
    imoanimoan Posts: 56member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bloggerblog View Post


    My vids stream fine. Try getting a fasted connection 10Mbps+ and wiring your ATV to your router will give you a big speed boost even if you're wireless over an 'n' WiFi network.



    I have Fios and a time capsule with Wireless N. Everything is updated software wise. As an end user, I shouldn't have to do anything else.



    Besides, it doesn't happen all the time. Could be Verizon throttling bandwith, could be Apple transitioning over to the new center. Who can know?



    I'm not digging into it until after they open the new data center. Then I'll know for sure it's not Apple.
  • Reply 20 of 39
    ozonerozoner Posts: 9member
    Hmmm. I am also on FIOS, and am seeing the exact same symptoms as you, with approximately the same setup.



    In doing some troubleshooting, I also noticed that there are vast areas of the US where my speeds drops to abysmal levels. Using speedtest.net andpingtest.net, I was seeing near-rated speeds (20Mbps) when hitting a server in my home state (Washington) or relatively nearby. However, when I change to a midwest or east coast server, my throughput drops by a factor of 10, and I see sub-2Mbps download speeds and >200ms ping times.



    Also, I noticed that there are a few sites that I simply cannot get to when on FIOS at home; for example, http://seat61.com - I get a Site Not Found.









    Quote:
    Originally Posted by iMoan View Post


    I have Fios and a time capsule with Wireless N. Everything is updated software wise. As an end user, I shouldn't have to do anything else.



    Besides, it doesn't happen all the time. Could be Verizon throttling bandwith, could be Apple transitioning over to the new center. Who can know?



    I'm not digging into it until after they open the new data center. Then I'll know for sure it's not Apple.



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