Netflix reveals challenges in the Cloud

Technology managers at video distributor Netflix Inc. have started a remarkably candid blog about their experiences with mission-critical cloud computing.

Technology managers at video distributor Netflix Inc., which last year took a big plunge into the public cloud, have started a remarkably candid blog about their experiences with mission-critical cloud computing.

Netflix redeployed most of its customer-facing applications -- including its Web site, search, recommendations, video streaming and huge data stores -- to Amazon.com Inc.'s cloud service. It's been a "Herculean effort," wrote John Ciancutti, one of three Netflix vice presidents of engineering, in The Netflix Tech Blog ( http://techblog.netflix.com ).

One reason for moving to the cloud was the need to completely rethink IT strategy as the company's business model moved from mailing DVDs to streaming video over the Internet, he said. It made sense to have Amazon handle data center infrastructure so that Netflix engineers could focus on innovation and customer experience.

But Ciancutti acknowledged some big challenges. "There were some dark days as we struggled with the sheer size of the task we'd taken on, and some of the differences between how [Amazon's cloud] operates vs. our own data centers," he wrote.

For example, Netflix must cope with hardware failures and slow response times in the cloud, where IT resources are shared with other tenants. "Co-tenancy is hard," Ciancutti said. To address that problem, Netflix developed a software architecture that it calls "Rambo," in which each application can succeed even if related systems fail, he said.

Read more about data center in Computerworld's Data Center Topic Center.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Configuration / maintenanceamazon.comhardware systemsnetflixData Centercloud computinginternetOracle

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mitch Betts

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?