Outlook.com: just how much is 150 petabytes, anyway?

petabyte tweetToday Microsoft announced that they’ve completed the transition of all 300 million Hotmail accounts to Outlook.com (while apparently adding another 100 million users, as Outlook.com is boasting 400 million active accounts according to today’s Outlook Blog post).  The move took only 6 weeks, and encompassed the moving of some 150 petabytes (a petabyte is 1 million gigabytes) of user data.  All of this took place while keeping both Hotmail.com and Outlook.com online, processing billions of transactions per day:

When Outlook.com came out of preview in February, it already had more than 60 million active accounts. However, Hotmail was still one of the most widely used services, with over 300 million active accounts. This made the magnitude of the process incredible, maybe even unprecedented. This meant communicating with hundreds of millions of people, upgrading all their mailboxes–equaling more than 150 million gigabytes of data–and making sure that every person’s mail, calendar, contacts, folders, and personal preferences were preserved in the upgrade. Of course, this had to be done with a live site experience that was handling billions of transactions a day.  With your help, we were able to do all of that in just about 6 weeks. We’ve spent the last few weeks ensuring that everything was completed in line with our high quality expectations.


So just how big is 150 petabytes of data, anyway?  An infographic posted over at the Microsoft News Center seeks to quantify just that, and offers up some rather startling comparisons:


6 Mt. Everests of DVDs? Wow!

Now that the transition to Outlook.com is complete, what do you want to see next for Outlook.com?  The blog post promises “lots more to come” as Outlook.com strives towards a billion inboxes – what are you waiting for?