Why Twitter Needs to Scale Horizontally, not Vertically?
By on July 4th, 2008

When I had heard about twitter initially the question that had popped in my mind was What the hell is twitter?, at this point the question I have in my mind is What the hell is twitter doing?, though after two years the question has not changed drastically but the meaning definitely has.

There have been several downtimes with twitter of late and we even showed you the funny way you can take in the downtimes, but this problem is serious and nevertheless needs a bit of thinking by the folks at twitter. They have to sit down and think how they can grow horizontally by supporting everything that they have right now, before some other service bulldozes them to death.


There has been a exponential growth of people who have started using twitter in the past 6 months and the infrastructure twitter had in place has simply collapsed. Can we blame that on bad specifications they had in the first place? Absolutely no, twitter was doing fine just 6 months ago, the sudden surge of usage has almost led them to their knees.

In my opinion I blame twitter team for not sitting down and thinking about scalability, adding new hardware to a system definitely does not solve scalability problems as many of you perceive, if the underlying software needs upgrading no matter how many servers you keep on adding, you are bound to fail.

A example where hardware can only scale as good as the software is, can be accomplished by having a PC with a Quad 2 Core processor and 4 GB ram running on a Windows 98 operating system, of course Windows 98 would never be able to utilize the hardware capabilities, because the underlying software is incapable of doing it. You would have to upgrade your operating system to XP 64 bit or Twitter,Twitter Scalability,Twitter Growth,Twitter Rantings

Author: Keith Dsouza Google Profile for Keith Dsouza
I am the editor-in-chief and owner of Techie Buzz. I love coding and have contributed to several open source projects in the past. You can know more about me and my projects by visiting my Personal Website. I am also a social networking enthusiast and can be found active on twitter, you can follow Keith on twitter @keithdsouza. You can click on my name to visit my Google+ profile.

Keith Dsouza has written and can be contacted at keith@techie-buzz.com.

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