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.
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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?