Author Archive

Tuesday, July 5th, 2011

Job: Be LibraryThing’s Systems Administrator

John chatting with Abby and Jeremy at the colo.

After four happy years at LibraryThing I’ve decided to take up an offer to move on to a new role. This means we need to a find a sysadmin to replace me!

LibraryThing is the labour of love of a small group of smart, dedicated people who work hard to do a lot with a little.

Qualifications: We’re looking for someone with broad systems administration experience, who can quickly pick up unfamiliar technologies, diagnose problems and keep everything running smoothly. You need to be calm under pressure, cautious and an excellent communicator. We’re a small team, so when things break at 4am, you need to be available.

LibraryThing is “headquartered” in Portland, Maine, but the servers are in Boston and many employees are in neither. You can be anywhere—I’m in Tasmania!

Experience: Applicants need considerable experience running websites. Experience in Linux systems administration is essential; we use RHEL and CentOS, but you’ve probably got professional experience with at least half a dozen distros. Experience with MySQL is also important, including replication, monitoring and tuning. You will need to be able to demonstrate experience with remote server administration including lights-out management techniques and equipment.

Technologies. Here’s a partial list of the technologies we use.

  • Apache
  • Nginx
  • Memcache
  • Solr
  • Subversion
  • PHP
  • Python
  • Bash shell scripting
  • Munin
  • rrdtool
  • Xen virtualisation
  • NFS
  • LVM
  • iscsi

Abby looking at the space where the new servers should go.

How We Work. LibraryThing has a somewhat unusual development culture. It is not for everyone. We develop quickly, knocking out features in hours or days, not weeks.

We develop incrementally and opportunistically, assuming that member feedback will sometimes overturn our plans in mid-course, and that some projects will fail. Everyone who works for LibraryThing must interact directly with members.

LibraryThing is more than a job for us. We work long, hard and usually sober, but not necessarily during “regular” hours. We love what we do. We want someone who will feel the same way.

Compensation. Salary plus gold-plated health insurance. This is a full-time job.

How to Apply.

Email: Tim and I will read your applications.

Send an email with your resume. In your email, go through the sections of the blog post above, and indicate how you match up with the job. Be specific. Do not send a cover letter.

Labels: employment, jobs, servers