Principal Systems Engineer – Hardware - Technical.ly

Principal Systems Engineer – Hardware

Linode |  Philadelphia | Dev / Eng

Job Description
Perks + Benefits
Company Culture
Technical.ly Coverage

Working as a Systems Engineer at Linode involves managing infrastructure for the largest independent open cloud provider in the world. We have 11 global data centers, thousands upon thousands of physical machines, and we aim to deliver a world-class experience to customers. To uphold these standards Linode must remain creative as it relates to solving problems and technological innovation.

We’re looking for a Principal level Systems Engineer with a focus on hardware to develop and implement Linode’s next generation of infrastructure. We need an “outside the box” thinker who can strategize and implement an infrastructure strategy to ensure our hardware is the fastest, most reliable, and most secure on the market. This will require creative thinking combined with deep domain expertise on Linux, hardware components, and performance tuning.

To find success in this role, you are a natural problem solver and a motivated individual. You are someone who is conscious of uptime and stability while living on the bleeding edge of hardware. Most of all, you’re generally curious and thrive when presented with an opportunity to learn something new.

TECHNOLOGIES

You don’t have to have experience with all of these, but you should have experience with some of them and an interest to learn the others:

  • Linux and Tools – Debian, NUMA, resource allocation, CPU pinning, hyperthreading, cgroups
  • Kernel – Debugging, Tuning, Configuring, Building
  • Hardware – Benchmarking, RAID, Server Engineering, Performance Tuning
  • Data Center Engineering – Provisioning and deploying servers, storage, and networking solutions
  • Scripting / Automation – SaltStack, Python, Bash, etc.
  • Infrastructure Services – DHCP, DNS, SSL, NTP, etc.
  • Alerting & Metrics – Nagios, Prometheus, ELK, Grafana
  • Version Control – Git, GitHub

What’s expected of you:

  • Expert level experience in a Hardware, DevOps, SysAdmin role, preferably working with large scale distributed systems.
  • Mastery of hardware administration and automation skills, best practices, and process innovation and efficiency
  • Scope and implement Linode’s next generation hardware iteration(s) and make recommendations that influence the Linode hardware roadmap
  • Expertise working with the Linux Kernel and experience with compiling and tweaking kernel for performance / stability
  • Make component and configuration recommendations based on workload and benchmark results
  • Experience with hardware and systems automation
  • Continuously create and iterate on the specification for new hardware builds
  • Proactively seek out gaps in technical understanding, especially cross-functional, and work with the entire organization to educate and inform.
  • Support and mentor other engineers within the department, act as an ambassador for systems across Linode, and provide education, mentorship, or guidence outside of the department
  • Act as a final escalation point for critical services and infrastructure

The nice-to-haves:

  • Familiarity with best practices of systems architecture, design, and high-performance tuning
  • Experience with KVM/QEMU or similar virtualization technologies
  • Experience architecting large scale database server hardware
  • Experience with racking and stacking hardware
  • Experience in a hosting environment or other cloud-based IAAS or SAAS
  • Presence in the open-source world. Contributions to open-source projects as well as your own portfolio to show off is a huge plus

Work With Us

  • Philadelphia Office: HQ is one of the coolest tech buildings in Philly; join us on N3RD street! (https://www.linode.com/press-release/past-meets-future-in-old-city-philadelphia/
  • Flexible work hours: We have remote work options, flexible start times, and a very generous paid time off package.
  • Unbelievable benefits: We provide comprehensive health insurance, 401(k) contributions, a profit-sharing program, and pension plans.
  • Monthly wellness reimbursements: up to $100 towards gym memberships, diet plans, massages, etc.
  • A MacBook Pro: to use around the office and at home.
  • Free hosting service: Take advantage of some Linode service – we’ll pick up the tab.
  • Linode Lunch: What goes better with technology than food? Nothing. We’ll bring in a catered lunch every week.
  • Competitive salary: It all begins with fair compensation. We believe in paying people well and rewarding those who go the extra mile.

Equal Employment, Equal Treatment, No Judgment
Linode is committed to a culture that creates a sense of inclusion and belonging. We understand that teams perform their best when they include people with diverse backgrounds and differing perspectives, but also that to achieve greatness, people need to feel like they can be themselves; they need to be equal, included, and comfortable in order to perform at their best. Linode stands for equal pay, equal treatment, and equal experiences for all of our people, past, present, and future, regardless of age, race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexuality, socioeconomic class, disability status, or any other differentiating factor. We strive to make sure every last person who we interact with feels like they belong and has the same opportunities as everyone else.

Since 2003, Linode has been providing cloud computing services to customers around the world. Linode offers compute, storage, and networking services from data centers in regions spanning North America, Europe, Asia, and Oceania. We are committed to making Linode the most simple, powerful, and reliable hosting provider that thousands of customers—from the fastest-growing startups to established enterprises—trust. This industry moves fast, but we strive to hire the kind of people who can stay a step ahead and keep us – and themselves – at the top. We are an equal opportunity employer and we are committed to building a diverse, inclusive, and welcoming workplace for all.

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Health & Wellness
  • Dental Insurance
  • Health Insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • Short Term Disability
  • Vision Insurance
Parental Benefits
  • Family Medical Leave
  • Flexible Work Schedule
  • Parental Leave
Perks & Discounts
  • Casual Dress
  • Lunch Provided
  • Offsite Company Events
  • Snacks Provided
  • Special Discounts
Professional Development
  • Tuition Reimbursement
Retirement & Stock Options Benefits
  • 401K
Vacation & Time Off Benefits
  • Paid Holidays
  • Paid Sick Days
  • PTO

What does Linode look for in prospective employees?

We constantly seek people who are not only qualified to do the job, but who are passionate about doing it well. We have a unique environment where our projects aren’t segmented or siloed — every employee owns what they’re working on and gets to see how it impacts our users and how it fits into high-level strategy. We look for people with a strong interest in learning and growing - personally and professionally.

Furthermore, empathy is the name of the game, and though it might sound cheesy, our number one requirement is a desire to help people. Assisting customers is the core of the job for every employee at Linode. If you’re not motivated by solving problems and making people happy, you’re at the wrong place.

What about technical skills?

Linode employees, especially those on the support team, often come to the company from a variety of non-technical backgrounds. That said, technical aptitude is a must. All employees pick up the Linux command line. The work we do is specific to Linux.

Technologists should know that while historically we’ve been a Python shop leveraging Flask, Django, and React, a lot of our next-gen systems are built with Go and Kubernetes. On top of that, we use SaltStack for configuration management, Docker for containerization and Jenkins for continuous integration. We don’t care so much about years of experience with particular languages, frameworks, and libraries as we care about passion, aptitude for learning new technologies, and eagerness to work with the best tools for each job.

We run a six-week training program for anyone new going into support and there's a two week mentorship after that before you even answer a call. It helps grow a strong support team,  but it also creates a wonderful resource for the rest of the company whether moving into engineering, marketing or technical documentation.

What does a typical day of work at Linode look and feel like?

When it comes down to it, you can and should have a good time working at Linode. We empower our employees to use their knowledge to do the job the best way, to have constructive debates, and ultimately to do things that will produce the best results. We’ve held on to our startup feel, but with the benefit of being a market leader in a booming industry. At the end of the day, our employees are passionate about the things they work on which makes for a rewarding environment.

Linode strives to be communicative and open, both with our open source community and with each other. Employees are encouraged to offer their input on how to make the company and platform better, and that feedback is always evaluated.

A lot of our internal folks were customers of Linode before they came to work at Linode. It's really easy to hear the voice of the customer when it's also the person sitting across the table helping you build the product.

How does Linode encourage professional growth and learning?

Linode offers a unique opportunity for those looking to launch or continue a great career in tech while learning new skills on the job. We’ve cultivated a culture of continuous learning and self-improvement. Professional aspirations aren’t limited here, and new roles are often created based on personal goals and company needs.

We have a Day-in-the-Life program where employees interested in another role can spend a day shadowing someone in that position. We create paths naturally instead of sending you out to get a certification. 

A new ‘Work From Home’ policy allows employees to work remotely two days a week, three if they are on the Support team. Many feel the new policy has increased their productivity, as well as eased the burden of finding that elusive balance between life and work.

What new projects or partnerships is Linode excited about?

Linode recently secured a premiere partnership with Limelight—an edge services platform delivering high-performance digital experiences. The partnership has been a win-win for both companies. Linode has gained access to a world class content distribution network, inciting its expansion into a new customer vertical of larger Enterprise customers, while Limelight reaps the benefits of Linode’s specialized computing expertise.  

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