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WeAreDelphix: Meet Sara Hartse

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In our newest employee spotlight, meet Sara Hartse, an engineer on the platforms team. Learn about why she was inspired to join Delphix, her involvement with the open source community, and her secret talent for quilting.

What do you do at Delphix and what inspired you to join the company? 

I’m an engineer on the platforms team, and I work on the interface between our product and the operating system(s) it runs on—including ZFS, an open source copy-on-write filesystem. Through ZFS, I’ve had the amazing opportunity to engage with the wider open source community, where I’ve also given talks at the OpenZFS Developer Summit and BSDCan about the features and performance enhancements I’ve built with the team at Delphix. 

I also contribute as an engineering release lead, where I’ve gained a lot of appreciation for the collaboration that takes place between teams within Delphix. I’m continually inspired by how my teammates are always striving to improve our processes and drive a better experience for both engineers and customers. 

I joined Delphix over 2 years ago after my summer internship, when I fell in love with the  engineering culture. Our company emphasizes collaboration, creativity, and most importantly, growth. We’re made up of a compassionate community that seeks to foster inclusivity and encourage people to be their whole selves. Because of this inclusive environment, I’ve never felt self-conscious about asking questions or voicing an idea —which struck me as the kind of place I could grow into the best engineer I can be. 

You can ask me anything about…?

Moving Delphix from Illumos to Linux. In order to better support of goal of enabling the Delphix platform to run wherever it’s needed—especially different cloud platforms like AWS, Azure, and GCP—we made the decision to move our product from a Solaris-based OS onto a Linux one for our upcoming 6.0 release. This meant finding all the different pieces of our product that interact with the underlying operating system and plugging them into Linux. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed stumbling upon the differences, big and small, of both operating systems and figuring out how to translate each aspect from one world into the other. 

What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on at Delphix? 

My favorite project so far has been improving the performance of dataset clone deletion on ZFS. It’s a really intriguing problem at a high level because it has to do with the importance of destroying something quickly. I did a deep dive into the tradeoffs that a copy-on-write filesystem provides and developed an algorithm that takes advantage of existing data structures in ZFS. I especially loved having the opportunity to perform real-world experiments to test my theories. You can learn more about it here

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? 

Figure out what success looks like to you. It serves as a reminder to stay focused on my own goals and journey without comparing myself to others. Because at the end of the day, success is about defining my own rules and celebrating all the wins, both big and small.  

What’s your secret talent? 

Quilting.

Quilt

Quilt

 

What song instantly puts you in a good mood? 

“Dirty Computer” by Janelle Monae

What drives you everyday? 

The fact that there’s so much to learn in the world of engineering. Every day coming into work, I look forward to exploring deeper into various systems challenges as well as software security, programming languages, and distributed systems.