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Second Life has too many servers, in danger of eating Internet

CNet has an interesting article questioning Second Life’s fiscal sanity:

“Second Life” currently runs on 2,579 servers that use the dual-core Opteron chip produced by AMD. Each server is responsible for an individual “sim,” or 16 acres of virtual “Second Life” land. At peak usage that means that each server is handling about three users.

Well, uh, thats… um… I’ll let everyone’s favorite pirate respond.

“My understanding of (Linden Lab’s) back-end requirements are that they’re absurd and unsustainable,” said Daniel James, CEO of Three Rings, publisher of the online game “Puzzle Pirates”. “They have (about) as many peak simultaneous players as we do, and we’re doing it on four CPUs.”

Philip Rosedale, Linden’s CEO, responded that their architecture was similar to Google, so no worries. Not mentioned: Google has slightly more concurrent users than Second Life, and probably serves more than, uh, three users per server. A more tenable response is that SL actually sells server space; owning “land” in SL can run a user up to $200 a month, which is in line with many rack-mounted server solutions for other web applications.

When thought of as another type of internet daemon, this almost makes sense. When thought of as a game server, it makes my wee head explode into goo.

(Thanks to AFKgamer for the link)