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The Cloudcast - Weekly Cloud Computing Podcast
The Cloudcast #262 - Understanding Dropbox's Infrastructure Transition
August 02, 2016 Aaron Delp and Brian Gracely
Aaron and Brian talk with James Cowling (@jamesacowling; Storage Team Lead @Dropbox) about the Dropbox migration from AWS, project “Magic Pocket”, building distributed systems, lessons learned and how much better something must be before making a massive change.

Show Links:
Show Notes:
  • Topic 1 - Welcome to the show. You’re a little bit Internet-famous due to the Wired Magazine article this year, but give us your background and how you got involved with Dropbox.
  • Topic 2 - There were obviously business reasons why Dropbox did this, but walk us through your thinking about the challenges of designing “Magic Pocket” (codename of the project).
  • Topic 3 - What does the application and operations team of a large distributed application (or platform) look like? What are the roles? What are the primary concerns and focus areas?
  • Topic 4 - What did you get right on Magic Pocket and what surprised you as it went into production? What lessons could other people learn from your experience?
  • Topic 5 - Are you able to share any “today” measurements about where Dropbox is today vs. 2012? People are obviously interested in big migrations and if it was worth all the time/cost/effort.
  • Topic 6 - What lessons could people learn from this huge migration effort? What was the thought process between business decisions and technical decisions….and how did the process work over the timeframe?
Feedback?
Aaron and Brian talk with James Cowling (@jamesacowling; Storage Team Lead @Dropbox) about the Dropbox migration from AWS, project “Magic Pocket”, building distributed systems, lessons learned and how much better something must be before making a massive change.

Show Links:
Show Notes:
  • Topic 1 - Welcome to the show. You’re a little bit Internet-famous due to the Wired Magazine article this year, but give us your background and how you got involved with Dropbox.
  • Topic 2 - There were obviously business reasons why Dropbox did this, but walk us through your thinking about the challenges of designing “Magic Pocket” (codename of the project).
  • Topic 3 - What does the application and operations team of a large distributed application (or platform) look like? What are the roles? What are the primary concerns and focus areas?
  • Topic 4 - What did you get right on Magic Pocket and what surprised you as it went into production? What lessons could other people learn from your experience?
  • Topic 5 - Are you able to share any “today” measurements about where Dropbox is today vs. 2012? People are obviously interested in big migrations and if it was worth all the time/cost/effort.
  • Topic 6 - What lessons could people learn from this huge migration effort? What was the thought process between business decisions and technical decisions….and how did the process work over the timeframe?
Feedback?
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