Since the arrival of AnandTech's very own Google Mini, Google has issued several updates to this little blue box. We're taking a look at Google's present-day Mini to provide up-to-date insights on this search solution for small-to-medium-sized businesses. The Mini product line currently sports four different licenses, ranging from $1,995 for the ability to search through 50,000 documents, to $8,995 for a machine that will handle up to 300,000 documents. Buyers can opt for an extra year of customer support, which will raise the price by $995. The Google Mini's hardware is identical, regardless of which license one chooses, and all the license plans offer full functionality.

Google's updates to the Mini resulted in a physically smaller enclosure and quite a few new features, some of which we will discuss specifically later in this article. We also investigated the benefits of the Mini's integration with Google Analytics, and to top it off, we did some benchmarking to see exactly how the Mini performs.

Scratching the surface
Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • Genx87 - Thursday, December 27, 2007 - link

    The lack of security takes this out of an serious contention for a small or medium size business who can afford this device. The cost takes it out of the contention for business's who are small enough to not care about security as much.

    Having worked for a small business ~30 people. There is no way they would authorize me to spend that kind of cash on a device that indexes our documents. At my current employer which is ~200 people we would have the budget, but the lack of security will put the smackdown on it.

  • bfoster68 - Tuesday, December 25, 2007 - link

    just to clear something up. You don't implement a raided solution as a form of backup. You implement it for fault tolerance so that if a drive fails your system stays up. I don't know what market segment google planned for this appliance but my company would require a fault tolerance solution providing 4 9's uptime.

    my guess is this appliance is for the small business segment and the hardware was designed with this in mind.

    Any solution for a fortune 500 company would require at a minimum dual redundant power supplies and a hardware based, hot swapable raid configuration, Error corrrecting ram and many other features.

    I am not very familiar with this product so please feel free to correct any inaccuracies.

    Just my two cents.

  • dblevitan - Friday, December 21, 2007 - link

    Has anyone tried taking out the hard drive, connecting it to another computer, and looking at what's on it? I'm sure it can't be too hard to see what's actually running on the computer.
  • n0nsense - Sunday, December 23, 2007 - link

    You'll probably find Linux based system inside running MySQL and the engine :)

    For the rest, the prescot CPU and 1 HD used because they cost less.
    When you save 100$ on each box, it is 100,000$ for 1000 boxes :)
  • Lizz - Saturday, December 22, 2007 - link

    Getting inside the Mini is probably not impossible, and we considered quite a bunch of methods, simply out of curiosity.

    However, the focus of this review is to give our readers a look at what the Mini actually offers those interested in purchasing one, so we decided not to give it too much focus. :)
  • drothgery - Friday, December 21, 2007 - link

    At least on my employer's Google mini, I found that I could add cookies to the request header.
  • andyleung - Friday, December 21, 2007 - link

    For green purpose, maybe google will do the magic of using AMD Geode or VIA CPU that consumes no more than 5W of power in peak time and still process 250 queries per second. Good job google, I am looking forward to seeing you doing this one day.
  • Taft12 - Friday, December 21, 2007 - link

    Agreed, especially given the light load required for this appliance's purpose. In the meantime, if they must use a chip single-core desktop chip, why not one of the Core 2-based Celerons?

    Great review! I knew it would get bogged down in a hardware discussion though given the audience here.
  • PBMax - Friday, December 21, 2007 - link

    This device is an appliance. It is not a "computer" in the traditional sense of a multipurpose server. I had to fight that idea when my previous company went into the appliance business. When you buy an appliance you buy what it can do and not how it does it. They sell these systems as 50,000 document and 300,000 document systems. So that is the benchmark for performance. As for RAID. This is an entry level system and as such is stripped down. I'm sure the higher end models support RAID. I went to a Google Enterprise seminar and they were talking about search appliances from the Mini to the OneBox and prices ranged from $1500 to over a million. Also I don't think the sysadmin has access to the machine at a level that they can backup anything but the settings. But since this is a search appliance they should be able to restore the box and import their settings and have it reindex their network.
  • HotdogIT - Friday, December 21, 2007 - link

    "In closing, we'd like to thank Peter Griffin of Google, who helped us out a great deal while exploring the Mini's features."

    Peter. Griffin.


Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now