Designing and launching the next-generation database system @ Slack: from whiteboard to production

Wednesday 12:50PM-1:40PM

@ Room E


50 minutes conference


Developer, Operations

Slack is a messaging platform for teams that brings all communication together, creating a single unified archive accessible through powerful search.

MySQL is the primary storage for all our customer data and we currently execute billions of transactions per hours. As more users join the service, and Slack becomes a more critical part of their workflow, the system become more complicated and difficult to manage. What started out as a simple MySQL database was only the starting point for a long journey redesigning our entire database infrastructure.

This talk will analyze how our operations team took Vitess, a bleeding edge, poorly-documented open source software developed by Google and then hardened, tested and shaped it for our infrastructure and host all our mission critical data. This presentation will to thought the technical challenges that faced to successfully deploy this project (AWS instance upgrade i2 -> i3, storage SSD -> NVMe, kernel 3.13 -> 4.4, MySQL 5.6 -> 5.7, replication type async -> semi-sync, etc..) the key decisions that we took, what went well, what didn't and the course correction that we made along the way.

Attendees can expect to hear details about how we took some whiteboard conversations and turned them into battle-tested, production-caliber systems.


Guido Iaquinti

Guido Iaquinti (Slack)

Operations Engineer


I'm a system engineer with academic background and experience in high volume/high availability Internet architectures. I'm a technology enthusiast excited about open source software. My passion is to develop, scale and automate complex systems.


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