Facebook Production Engineer Interview Questions in San Francisco, CA | Glassdoor

Facebook Production Engineer Interview Questions in San Francisco, CA

Updated Mar 4, 2017
19 Interview Reviews

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Helpful (30)  

Production Engineer Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA
Declined Offer
Negative Experience
Average Interview

Application

I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA) in April 2016.

Interview

I was shocked by how unprofessional the process was. My recruiter from the beginning was super flaky. They would not call me when they said they would and then call at completely random times catching me off guard. I appreciated that they tried to help me prepare for interviews, though, which they don't really "have" to do. Then, after the on site, they basically told me I had to commit to coming to Facebook before I would receive an offer. It basically seemed like the recruiter didn't want to go through the effort of filling out paper work if I wasn't going to come. This was pretty shocking after having spent a month jumping through all the hoops and spending basically a whole day on their campus for interviews. I was already leaning slightly toward another company and that really clinched my decision. Then when I told the recruiter I wasn't going to come they got really aggressive contacting me repeatedly over call/text/email trying to get me to change my mind. Still without giving me anything in writing! I was so shocked that a company with the reputation Facebook had would operate that way.

Facebook Response

Jun 6, 2016 – Your Friends at Facebook

Thank you for recently interviewing with our team. We're sorry to hear that you did not receive the best possible interview experience with our team. We'll take your feedback and work to improve the ... More

Other Interview Reviews for Facebook

  1. Helpful (14)  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 4 weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (San Francisco, CA) in March 2016.

    Interview

    I was referred by a former colleague, and was immediately contacted by the recruiter, who was extremely nice. He asked 20 basic questions involving coding, networking and systems. Then there were 3 phone interviews, each technical, consisting of coding, systems, and networking.

    The coding interview was straight forward and it was clear that this was a skill that is necessary, but not as important as the others.

    The systems interview was where I personally had the biggest issue. Not because of the material, but because of the content, and interviewer. The interviewer was the stereotypical Silicon Valley Nerd bully who even warned me before we started that he comes of "a little d*uchey." The moment he said that I knew that the interview was not going to go well. He would not clarify ANY of his questions, he would assume that my sub questions revealed lack of understanding or knowledge. The questions were ridiculous, down to how certain flag options affect the output of certain commands. I understand that a production engineer must know these details, but it is extremely stupid and unrealistic to think that these details cannot be looked up.

    Long story short, I feel like they didnt even test how much I actually knew about how Linux actually works, just how to look for certain arcane items that vary from distro to distro.

    Following this disaster, I was informed by the recruiter that they were "not able to offer me the position", as well as "not able to share feedback." Very bitter taste in someones mouth that had been studying and preparing for weeks, sometimes at the expense of my current job, just to be told "no" with zero accountability as to why.

    Oh wait, but there is more. After a long weekend of sadness and self reflection, I was called again by the recruiter, to say that "they actually want to continue the process to the networking interview, due to the fact that there are many PE teams that deal a lot more with networking than with systems." Naturally, I was ecstatic, seeing as how I am currently in the networking field, and would be able to crush any interview regarding networking.

    The networking interview came along, which I aced completely. I was contacted the next day, told that they were "not able to offer me the position" and "not able to share feedback"... again. Very weird and ridiculous considering the fact that they called me specifically to test my networking knowledge, only to ask super basic networking questions, have me get them right, then tell me no, and waste yet another week of my time and energy.

    The Recruiter at facebook was fantastic, the overall experience was not. All of the interviewers were fantastic, except for the systems one. All it takes is one egomaniac that thinks only the worthy should have the chance to work alongside them.

     Big attractive companies get away with lack of accountability in the interview process, and literally do not care at all about providing legitimate reasons as to why they think you cant do a job that you know you can do.

    Interview Questions

    • 20 questions

      coding - counting things in a logfile, basic algorithms

      systems - literally know every single detail of what could arise in a system and how to fix it exactly, hope and pray they ask you something that you have memorized

      networking - super basic, whats your favorite protocol. questions about DNS  
      Answer Question

    Facebook Response

    Jun 6, 2016 – Your Friends at Facebook

    Thanks for sharing your feedback. We're so sorry to hear about your interview experience. Every candidate moment matters to us and we'll leverage this feedback to improve our experience.

  2.  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 6 weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA) in February 2016.

    Interview

    It's a intense and length process with multiple steps, but all the interviewers were fair and helpful. Despite of the hard level of the questions, I left all interviews with a good feeling that I could show my skills and I could understand clearly my mistakes and week spots. The recruiter has also very responsive.

    Interview Questions

  3. Helpful (3)  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2+ weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (San Francisco, CA) in January 2016.

    Interview

    I passed the first 2 then failed at system level interview, the interviewer is great and the env is very nice. They really set up one good question for people to understand easily at first then hold your back finally. I finally failed that but love to work with them in future.

    Interview Questions

    • when you saw many system interrupts, what could be the possible reason in linux   1 Answer
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  5. Helpful (9)  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA) in September 2015.

    Interview

    Phone screen, then code-over the phone, followed by in person with 6-8 people in 4 interview sessions. The initial phonescreen covers typical techbusiness shibboleths, the coding interview was REALLY fun, and I was excited to do the inperson, but that when everything fell apart.

    For some reason, facebook has decided that at the inperson interview, you have to write your code on a whiteboard, and it can't have any bugs in it. They even tell you to practice coding on a whiteboard before the interview, because apparently, whiteboard coding is a big part of working at facebook. I'll just go ahead and say it, no one writes software longhand, it's not how it's done, and to expect people to write nontrivial things on a whiteboard in 2015 is beyond ridiculous, especially considering that part of facebook's own process is a code interview where you write a program using a computer!

    If you're interviewing a lumberjack, do you have him draw a chainsaw on a whiteboard?

    The most important thing to keep in mind if you want to get a job at facebook is that they reinvent everything. Every question they ask will be about how you would reinvent something. I was unprepared for the amount of guessing I was required to do (I'm terrible at guessing.) Remember when you're answering them that they have basically UNLIMITED RESOURCES and are willing to reinvent any wheel. I'm not saying what they're doing is bad, I'm saying it's completely different than anywhere else I've worked in many years in the business, and I think I'd be working there now if I had approached the questions with that in mind, instead of my instinct, which is to leverage the work of others as much as possible to my advantage, eg I look at what's out there on the internet, and then do whatever I need to. If there's something already there, I use that, if not, I'll write my own, or somewhere inbetween -- like everyone not working at facebook does. Don't blow it like I did, remember it's not a normal job, it's facebook, where there are always hackers hacking, and they have more money than Canada to hire more hackers to hack on whatever they've hacked together.

    The recruiters are nice, the management seemed friendly and capable, lunch wasn't very good but I was probably just stressed out. If you've ever been to the office when it was Sun Microsystems, be ready for a shock, also the cafeteria was like the mall at xmas.

    I'd love to work there, and on a different day I may have gotten the gig, but at the end of the day, you've still got to make it through a long gauntlet of bored looking engineers, looking to exclude you.

    They have unique problems there and it would be a super cool job, so I hope this helps someone else. As for me, I'll never go through it again.

    Interview Questions

    • How would you design a cache API?   1 Answer
    • reimplement 'tail' in a scripting language   1 Answer
  6. Helpful (48)  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA
    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA) in March 2015.

    Interview

    Quick tech quiz with the recruiter over the phone. Then we scheduled two phone screens, one on coding, one on systems, both of them 1 hour long. Once you pass the phone screens you'll have to schedule an on-site visit which consists of 5 interviews, 45 minutes each: systems, networking, cultural, system architecture, coding. If you're not from CA, they'll fly you over to SFO, preferably on a Monday.

    Interview Questions

    • The quiz was pretty simple, you'll be asked basic questions about Linux.

      Battleship game: write a function that finds a ship and return its coordinates.
      Write a script that connects to 100 hosts, looks for a particular process and sends an email with a report.
      What is a filesystem, how does it work? File permissions, properties, file types. A write operation failed with an error, how do you figure out what happened? What's a signal and how is it handled by the kernel? What's a zombie process?

      Talk about an iostat output (what does user vs system cpu load mean, what does iowait% mean, cache vs buffers, why do we need caching, how much cache is needed, how can disk performance be improved, where is the bottleneck)
      How do TCP, UDP work? Describe what happens when a client opens a web page. How does DNS work? How does HTTP work? How does a router work?
      Various questions about your current experience, talk about a conflict situation and how you handled it.
      How would you design a system that manipulates content sent from a client (e.g. clean bad words in a comment post)?
      Write a function to sort a list of integers that looks like this [5,2,0,3,0,1,6,0] -> [1,2,3,5,6,0,0,0] in the most efficient way.  
      Answer Question
  7. Helpful (4)  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2+ weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA) in April 2015.

    Interview

    They recruited me at a conference. I had a recruiter phone screen followed by two engineering phone screens. One was focused on coding and the other on systems. This was followed by an all-day interview at the Facebook Campus. The all-day interview was 5 sessions with different engineers, 45 minutes each. Each interview focused on a different area like Architecture, Coding, Networking, and Systems.

    Interview Questions

  8. Helpful (8)  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA) in March 2015.

    Interview

    I was contacted by a recruiter through LinkedIn. He asked several simple questions and then set up two phone screens, one for "systems" and one for "software engineering." A few days later I was invited to Menlo Park, CA for a day of interviews. There were 5 45-minute sessions: software engineering, networking, manager, and design. The interviewers varied in quality, but we generally pretty good.

    Interview Questions

    • Under NDA to not reveal interview questions however they are very predictable questions which could be easily understood based on the names of the interviews. There were no odd trick questions like "deploy SSH to 10,000 servers on the moon."   1 Answer
  9. Helpful (1)  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Menlo Park, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 1+ week. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA) in February 2015.

    Interview

    A recruiter reached out to discuss a position that
    may be a good fit with my skillset. It started with a
    phone interview followed up with a code review interview.
    The process took about 10 days.

    The interview questions were not difficult, some with
    several answers. Unix Process, networking, tcp/ip stack,
    and system administrative commands.

    The process was casual, I did notice before the interviews
    even started. Their coordination was awkward, after receiving
    numerous misspelled emails and wrong phone numbers. I was a
    little leery of working for them. Nonetheless, I continued
    with the 45-min code review interview and answered the question.

    Overall, the interviews were comparable to other companies. Also,
    they were efficient with their responses and answering questions.

    Interview Questions

    • Given a sentence convert the sentence to the modified pig-latin language:

      Words beginning with a vowel, remove the vowel letter and append the letter to the end.
      All words append the letters 'ni' to the end.
      All words incrementally append the letter 'j'. i.e. 'j','jj','jjj', etc...  
      2 Answers
  10. Helpful (13)  

    Production Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Facebook (Menlo Park, CA) in March 2014.

    Interview

    Was initially contacted via LinkedIn by an internal Facebook recruiter that dealt specifically with this role. I was impressed with the recruiter's technical knowledge, always a good sign, and agreed to go through the screening and start the interview process.

    The process is 5 steps:

    * Call with recruiter about position
    * Phone screening with a few trivia questions regarding systems administration.
    * Co-operative coding phone interview
    * Systems phone interview
    * On-Site interview

    The call with the recruiter was mostly about the position description and duties, and assessing whether both sides think it's a good fit. The phone screening, also done with the recruiter, is just a few questions that anyone who has administered Linux for an organization would be able to answer off the top of their head.

    The coding interview was done using a collaborative editing tool, so both parties could see what was being typed. The coding questions were not your typical abstract data manipulation questions, but rather questions that required systems knowledge, and in my case were most easily answered with shell scripts.

    I didn't actually do the systems phone interview, as they considered my programming interview strong enough to simply skip this step. I'm informed this is not uncommon.

    The on-site interview loop included five 45-minute segments: Programming, Systems, Networking, Solution Architecture, and meeting with the Manager (not in that order). Additionally, lunch with the initial recruiter and a brief chat afterwards with a different recruiter that dealt with the financial and logistics portions of the interview and negotiations.

    One thing that struck me during the entire process is that *everyone* I spoke to, and I mean *everyone* because I asked them all, absolutely loved working there. Every time I asked someone how they liked working at Facebook, their face lit up and they started listing off reasons they loved working there, and everyone had the same reason: They liked everyone around them, felt trusted and respected, and trusted and respected the people around them. This was unanimously the first reason, usually followed by "and the work is really interesting".

    Interview Questions

    • What options do you have, nefarious or otherwise, to stop people on a wireless network you are also on (but have no admin rights to) from hogging bandwidth by streaming videos?   3 Answers

    Negotiation

    My negotiations were all pre-offer. There is a compensation department that comes up with an offer based on your years of experience, strength during the interview process, and current pay. They will almost certainly exceed your current pay if you disclose it, though I should probably point out they didn't verify mine. In my case they offered base pay approximately 10% higher than my prior base pay, and I presume this is fairly standard.

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