Microsoft Corporation Research Intern - Programmable SSDs in Redmond, Washington

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Microsoft Research provides a dynamic environment for research careers with a network of world-class research labs led by globally-recognized scientists and engineers. Our researchers and engineers pursue innovation in a range of scientific and technical disciplines to help solve complex challenges in diverse fields, including computing, healthcare, economics, and the environment.

Programmable SSDs

The move toward software-defined control for IO devices and co-processors has played out before in the data center. Both GPUs and network interface cards (NICs) started as black-box devices that provide acceleration for CPU-intensive operations. Internally, they implemented acceleration features with a combination of specialized hardware and proprietary firmware. As customers demanded greater flexibility, vendors slowly exposed programmability to the rest of the system, unleashing the vast processing power GPUs and a new level of agility in how systems can manage networks for enhanced functionality like more granular traffic management, security, and deep network telemetry.

Storage is poised at the cusp of a similar transformation. Modern Flash SSDs rely on sophisticated processing engines running complex firmware, and vendors already provide customized firmware builds for cloud operators. Exposing this programmability through easily-accessible interfaces will let storage systems in the cloud data centers adapt to rapidly-changing requirements on-the-fly. Fully programmable storage will provide opportunities to better bridge the gap between application/OS needs and storage capabilities/limitations, while allowing us to innovate in-house at cloud speed.


Interns put inquiry and theory into practice. Alongside fellow doctoral candidates and some of the world’s best researchers, interns learn, collaborate, and network for life. Interns not only advance their own careers, but they also contribute to exciting research and development strides. During the 12-week internship, students are paired with mentors and expected to collaborate with other interns and researchers, present findings, and contribute to the vibrant life of the community. Research internships are available in all areas of research, and are offered year-round, though they typically begin in the summer.


In addition to the qualifications below, you’ll need submit a minimum of two reference letters for this position. After you submit your application, a request for letters may be sent to your list of references on your behalf. Note that reference letters cannot be requested until after you have submitted your application, and furthermore, that they might not be automatically requested for all candidates. You may wish to alert your letter writers in advance, so they will be ready to submit your letter.

Required Qualifications

  • Must be currently enrolled in a PhD program in Computer Science.

  • Must have at least 1 year of experience of using open-channel SSDs.

  • Must have at least one in-depth paper associated with flash SSDs.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Must be familiar with the Ubuntu environment.

  • Must be able to collaborate effectively with other researchers.

  • Must be able to demonstrate ability to develop research agendas.

Microsoft is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, ancestry, color, family or medical care leave, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, national origin, physical or mental disability, political affiliation, protected veteran status, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws, regulations and ordinances. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements. If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation due to a disability during the application or the recruiting process, please send a request via the Accommodation request form at .

Benefits/perks listed below may vary depending on the nature of your employment with Microsoft and the country where you work.