How Facebook dealt with its big data problem

For a social media company that manages billions of messages and photo uploads per year, Facebook’s ability to keep on top of that didn’t come without experiencing some “growing pains”, according to former technical lead Kannan Muthukkaruppan.

Muthukkaruppan, who now works at Nutanix in the United States as an engineer, spent almost six years at Facebook from 2007 to 2013, a time when the social media company made significant changes to its data storage due to growing pains.

Muthukkaruppan gave an example where all user details, which included people’s profiles and list of their friends, were kept in an MySQL open source data base.

“MySQL is good for some workloads but not data intensive workloads. Everything was bursting at the seams in 2007 so we had to look at this,” he said.

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