Microsoft to get huge datacentre in China

Microsoft to get huge datacentre in China

Summary: Big clouds and big datacentres are big in China. Local company 21Vianet is building a new datacentre which should be completed this year - ready for Microsoft to move in.


Chinese datacentre provider 21Vianet is building one of China's largest datacentres, which will occupy a space about the size of six football pitces.

Cloud and hosting company 21Vianet announced this week it had started construction on the datacentre in the Daxing, a southern district of Beijing.

Construction of the 42,000 square metre facility is expected to be completed by the end of 2013. During the first phase of operation, it will be capable of holding 3,000 cabinets and will later expand to 5,000 cabinets.

Microsoft will be involved in the project from the outset. 21Vianet's CEO, chairman and founder Josh Chen, said in a statement: "We will also utilise this datacentre to power Microsoft's premier commercial cloud services" — presumably Azure.

The Shanghai municipal government, 21Vianet and Microsoft "joined hands" in 2011 to celebrate 21Vianet's licence to provide Office 365 and Azure cloud computing, storage, database, integration and networking services across China.

21Vianet operates the cloud services from a datacentre located on the high-rise filled Pudong side of Shanghai's Bund, providing a locally hosted alternative to direct Microsoft Office 365 services that are delivered from other facilities across the Asia-Pacific region. Promoting its own Office 365 offering, 21Vianet noted that time: "Services from these [foreign] datacentres will be subject to relevant the laws of regions in which the datacenters are located."

Although large, 21Vianet's Daxing datacentre pales in size to the cloud datacentre IBM and Chinese firm Range Technology are developing in northern China province Heibei. The 620,000 square metre datacentre will be about 96 football fields in size, or as Forbes put it, nearly the same size as the Pentagon.

That facility is expected to be completed by 2016 and was touted by IBM as Asia's largest cloud computing centre. 

Topics: Data Centers, Microsoft, China

Liam Tung

About Liam Tung

Liam Tung is an Australian business technology journalist living a few too many Swedish miles north of Stockholm for his liking. He gained a bachelors degree in economics and arts (cultural studies) at Sydney's Macquarie University, but hacked (without Norse or malicious code for that matter) his way into a career as an enterprise tech, security and telecommunications journalist with ZDNet Australia. These days Liam is a full time freelance technology journalist who writes for several publications.

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  • I wonder about the legal implications of that

    For example, does this give the Chinese government the legal privilege of demanding any info MS might have on subversive activities by Chinese expats, even if the data aren't hosted on servers physically located in China?
    John L. Ries
    • legal

      The legal implication is that China and Chinese being fellow human being has the right to its own data, information and ethnic dignity. Not the defamation, spins and lies level to them by your 'democratic' presidential election candidate.
      Kay Li
      • And what does that have to do with my post?

        Does this mean that the Chinese government has the right to any and all data on Chinese citizens, regardless of where they live? Or does it just have the right to be free of criticism from ignorant foreigners like myself?
        John L. Ries
  • Why overseas?

    FedEx just completed a huge datacenter in Colorado, on the foothills of the Rockies. Takes advantage of the cooling provided by the climate.
    Peter Sabin
    • I bet the network latency from anywhere in China to Colorado and back

      made it not a great choice for serving Chinese customers. Plus they dont have to worry about the obama electricity tax.
      Johnny Vegas
    • Just for your information

      Just for your information there are over one billion human being in China. Human the same as those in USA. They also have the right to accurate data not corrupted by USA, CIA, Google and western media.
      Kay Li
      • Chinese Secret Police

        But snooped over by the Chinese Secret Police. The US only has one Political/Terror Internment Camp In Guantanamo Bay, though compliant with US Military Law. How many Political Gulag's do Chinese Communist Party lacky's run in China ?
      • Of course they do

        The question is, do Chinese, or any other country's citizens have the right to access data, "corrupted or not", not approved by their governments, but otherwise publicly available?
        John L. Ries
  • What's a football pitce?

  • PLA and Microsoft

    Does the PLA own 50 percent of Microsoft or does Microsoft earn 50 percent of the PLA ? Maybe they are one and the same, it all ends in Cybergeddon.