Thursday, August 7, 2008

Tech-ed 2008 – Part 1

This is a collection of my thoughts on Tech-Ed 2008. It is not all about the technology, but also about my experiences. I mainly focused on System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) due to my current focus at work, but tried to squeeze in different technologies here and there.

Day 1

goodtimeAfter a rocky start to my day – including a little mess-up with my plane booking – things just got better.

The keynote presentation this afternoon covered most of the technologies that will be focused on in the next couple of days, as well as the technologies to come from Microsoft.

Of course, my main focus for the next couple of days will be the System Center suite, particularly SCOM, but there are a couple of other technologies that have captured my interest, like Hyper-V and SCVMM.

I enjoyed the presentation on Microsoft Round Table immensely, as well as the integration between Visual Studio Team Server and Expression Blend. The husband and I both agreed that it is now time to start redeveloping our current home ASP-based intranet using .Net and Silverlight.

Tonight’s party was sponsored by my company, and it was great, as always. I am incredibly proud to work for this company, and enjoyed seeing everyone wearing bags, t-shirts and caps wearing my company’s branding.

I may have had a little too much wine at the party, but managed a little bit of networking and smiling at the camera.

And, I just have to say, it is nice to see the ocean again, even if it is just from my hotel room window.

 

Day 2

We woke up super early this morning, despite only getting to bed around 2am (due to a spontaneous drinking session at a club on the beach close to our hotel). This was the view from my hotel room this morning:

IMAGE_298

I felt a little rough, but full of energy and ready to fill up my brain.

The day started with a great session on System Center Virtual Machine Manager. My husband has been playing with the technology for a while, and I have read a bit about it, but I am really interested to see this technology in production. I also like the integration between SCVMM and SCOM. The System Center suite is really becoming very powerful, and this is an exciting space to be in at the moment.

dos-application-128x128The next session was an overview of SCOM, that I ended walking out of, due to the lack of presentation skills of the speaker. Luckily he didn’t really cover anything I didn’t already know, so it wasn’t a bit loss.

Next up was a brilliant presentation on building distributed applications in SCOM. The presenter was funny and engaging and had us rolling in the isles while imparting a bit of very handy knowledge. This is one of the main strengths of SCOM, and will have such big benefits in our current environment. I cannot wait to start building my own distributed applications.

After lunch, I attended another session by the same presenter on managing Web farms, AD and clustered SQL with SCOM, where, yet again, the importance of properly written applications was highlighted. One of the biggest struggles we face is getting developers to properly instrument their applications to allow products like SCOM to correctly monitor them. I ran into the development manager from my customer shortly after this session, and we had a quick chat about this very point.

Another SCOM session followed, this time a practical session on fixing common errors in Reporting Services for SCOM, as well as a couple of tips on how to create custom reports. This was really informational, and exposed, yet again, the power of this product.

By this time, my brain was completely fried, and I took a session’s break just to get some fresh air. This was also good, as it gave us some time to discuss the possibilities of SCOM and its integration not only in the environment I work in, but also my husband’s work environment.

We ended the day with part 1 of planning for the deployment of SCOM. It would probably have made more sense to have this session before all the others, but it was still a good session.

While not attending sessions, we spent some time in the exhibition areas, and also hunted MVPs. We had to collect MVP signatures to win a T-shirt. This was not as easy as one would imagine, considering there are currently only 14 MVPs locally. But, I got my 5 signatures in the end, and collected my Geek T, which I will be wearing tomorrow.

This evening was a free evening, for which I am eternally grateful. My brain is completely fried, and I am appreciating the time off to just do nothing.

1 comment:

Emm said...

That view is awesome - very pretty!

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