7 August 2008

Tech-ed Africa 2008 – Part 2

Day 3

control-panel-128x128 By now, I am tired. Buggered. But the brain is buzzing, and I have lots of space still to fill up.

The day started off with a continuation of the System Center session that I attended yesterday. Fantastic info allowed me to think about the architecture of my potential deployment. My husband and I also came up with a new architecture for his deployment after this session.

I then took a break for a session to try and download my work mail, because my mailbox was full. I was, unfortunately, not entirely successful – mostly due to non-performance of my laptop. I managed to get the mail down later in the afternoon though.

Next up was a brilliant session on managing Windows 2008 server with SCOM by my favourite presenter at Tech-ed Africa 2008. I also attended a session on authoring management packs after lunch by the same presenter.

Over lunch, I attended a session on Windows Home Server, that was cute, funny and informative. WHS has come a far way since I installed the Beta a year or so ago. It is also priced right for a home environment. Apparently, the software itself is placed at just over R1000, and a WHS device (headless server with software) comes in at around R5000 – which is the same price as a standard desktop these days, but WHS gives you all the benefits of a server. I loved the presentation, that was done in cartoons, and still giggle at the “when a mommy and daddy loves each other very much, they give each other something special: a server” line.

My last session for the day was on the Core Infrastructure Optimisation model. While not strictly in my current focus, it was good to think about the high level stuff again.

The beach party was a blast. I also met a couple of the presenters, and had some interesting (but possibly senselessly drunk) conversations with them. After the beach party, the husband and I walked back to the hotel along the beachfront, and ended up talking to the fishermen on the pier – giving us a slight reality check.

Day 4

configuration-settings-128x128 I am not sure I would have made it to day 5, had there been one. With a sum total of 7 hours sleep between Sunday and today, I am running on empty by now. Lots of coca-cola and the thought of going home was all that got me through today.

The first session this morning was on System Center Service Manager. This product will be a service desk solution that plugs into the System Center suite, and in particular SCOM, quite nicely. I look forward to beta testing it when the B2 refresh is available later this year.

The last session for today before the keynotes was a Notes from the Field on the System Center suite. Part of the session included a great case study on a local company’s SCOM deployment that was rather impressive and inspirational.

The closing keynote had a hint of sadness, because the post Tech-ed depression was near. The highlight of the keynote, for me, was the presentation by Stephen Attenborough, Commercial Director for Virgin Galactic. When I grow up, I want to work for VG :)

I am going to do a separate post on the key learnings for me from Tech-Ed Africa 2008, because there are some very specific things I have learnt, or thought of, not just in sessions, but in the conversations I had with various parties. I will also include links to some (or all) of the products I have mentioned in these two posts.


Emm said...

As you know, I am the least technological savvy of all of your friends (I'm sure).
But Windows Home Server sounds interesting. Will it help the three of us at home to access each other's files quicker and reduce the 15 minutes or so it is taking us to transfer episodes of NCIS over so we can watch them from the laptop?

Vanessa said...

@Emm: it may not reduce the speed of your copies, but it will help you with things like automated backups of your important files and make it easier to stream media across the network, so you don't need to copy the files :)

I think I should write a little overview of Home Server :)

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