As many people would be aware, Facebook has become some what of a phenomenon of late. Over the last 12 months, the site has seen growth that most internet companies could only dream of. If that wasn’t enough, in May 2007 Facebook announced that it was going to open up the service with what they called the Facebook Platform.
The Facebook Platform allows third parties to develop plugins or ‘application’s which work in concert with Facebook. When your application is loaded by a Facebook user, it passes information into your application which communicates with your own services. Of course, the dependence of your Facebook application on your own hosting, means that the more popular that your Facebook application becomes – the more web hosting capacity that you must have. There are some great tales of the struggles that companies like iLike faced when they launched their product and trying to keep up with the incredible demand. The insane popularity of Facebook means that if even a small percentage of their users load your application, it can translate in literally millions of web server requests and hundreds of gigabytes of data transferred; far more than any normal person could afford.
To help combat the problem, Joyent have teamed up with Dell and Facebook to offer over USD$3 million dollars worth of their accelerator hosting for free. We’re not talking about cheap Facebook application hosting, this offer from Joyent is absolutely free. The free Facebook application hosting offer from Joyent includes a complete virtualised environment with everything you’d need to get your Facebook application up and running using popular programming languages like PHP, Python and Ruby. Joyent are pushing the product as an on demand, scalable architecture which is built on top of their very successful Accelerator product. The beautiful thing about the Joyent Accelerators, is that their free hosting offers a seamless upgrade path into something more substantial if your Facebook application takes off.
To make sure that the offer isn’t abused, Joyent have some pretty straight forward terms. You’re application must be active and in use on Facebook for you to be eligible. The free Facebook application offer provides 1 year worth of free application hosting for your Facebook application – after that point you’ll be required to pay for a normal plan. Joyent are offering 3500 accounts with their free Facebook hosting offer. That might not seem like a lot, however if your application is dormant for more than 60 days – your account will be reclaimed.
If you’re looking into building a Facebook application or already have and the hosting costs keep going up, check out the Joyent offer – it might just be your saving grace.