Simon Willison’s Weblog

Why does Facebook chat use subdomains so aggressively?

My answer to Why does Facebook chat use subdomains so aggressively? on Quora

Probably because it involves long-running connections. Browsers have a limit on the number of connections you can have open to the same domain at the same time (I think it’s 8 in most browsers these days). If Facebook chat opened a connection to www.facebook.com and you opened up 8 Facebook windows you would no longer be able to navigate to any more Facebook pages, since all 8 connections would be taken up by the long lived chat connections. By connecting to a different subdomain for each connection this problem can be avoided.