The Size of Second Life

Andrew Linden spoke to one of the people in engineering, I suppose the engineers in this case are the hardware and operations people that deal with running Second Life®. It was one of these engineers that got Andrew (more of a software engineer) the current size of the Asset Database.

Image by puuikibeach - Flickr

A couple of days ago Andrew guessed the database was about 4 terabytes. He did know a garbage collection run recently completed and reduced the database by 85%. But, Andrew’s guess was off a bit…

The engineer told Andrew the Asset DB is now 192 terabytes…

Working backward and knowing the current size that is 15% of the previous pre-garbage collection size we can deduce the Asset DB had grown to 1,280 terabytes or 1.3 petabytes or 1,280,000,000,000,000 bytes. That was a huge database and the post-garbage collection size isn’t exactly small.

While I was concerned that unused items were being collected and moved to the garbage pile, Andrew says most of the data removed was taken from Inventory Trash, the things users have deleted. Andrew describes is as, “Actually the main source of the garbage assets were things that were taken to inventory trash, and then deleted and never given out, stored in other objects, or otherwise referenced. So, not from too many “uploads” from the viewer such as textures, mesh assets, and note cards.

I suppose my shoes are safe.

From other sources we have various measures of size. For instance: Tyche Shepard’s Grid Survey gives up to date information on the land in Second Life. As if May 12, 2012 Tyche Shepard’s site shows 29,952 regions online in the main grid. As each region is 256×256 meters or 65,536 square meters that gives us 1,962,934,272 sq m or 1.9 billion. On average 6.4 gb of assets per region… fortunately most of the assets are sitting in our inventories not on the ground in regions.

3 thoughts on “The Size of Second Life

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