Thursday, November 11, 2010

Tech-Ed Berlin 2010 – Day Four

The last whole day of Tech-Ed. Tomorrow (Friday) there are only sessions planned for the morning. At 13:30 hours the conference will be closed. I started today later than usual, so it was a bit busy at Messe Süd:

Today started for me with staffing the OpsMgr booth on the TLC floor from 9:45 AM until 1:00 PM. David Allen joined me in order to cover the DPM side of things. Even though many people visited the OpsMgr/DPM booth I wasn’t that busy. Most questions were about DPM. So while David was very busy (thank you David) I had time to look around and have some good talks with other attendees.

Session 01:
The first session I attended was organized by Alexandere Verkinderen, a much respected SCOM MVP. He was in charge of a BOF (Birds of a Feather) session, all about System Center, titled: ‘Shoot your System Center questions!’. The people attending could ask any kind of SC related questions and get them answered. Alexandere was assisted by Maarten Goet and Simon Skinner, both of them SCOM MVPs as well. So enough experience and knowledge was present in order to cover just as many area’s of the SC Suite.

Even though not all too many attendees were present it was a good session since many questions were asked and even better, got answered. So it was time well spent and good to see how Alexandre ran the session. Respect!

I skipped a session or two in order to visit some booths at the Expo. I talked with some companies who build MPs for SCOM and/or connect with SCOM in order to create additional value. Good to know about the additional possibilities so I can inform my customers about it. Also good to see that many companies deem SCOM important enough to build additional MPs and software. This will most certainly help keeping the product in a good shape and alive as well.

Session 02:
This session was all about the X-Plat (Cross Platform) extensions and third-party monitoring options that integrate with System Center. The speaker of this session was Periong Liu, the Sr. Program Manager of the SC X-Plat & Interop.

Many demonstrations were given. First I was a bit skeptical since the demonstrations weren’t done live but existed out of a set screen dumps. However, the way she explained them and highlighted the most important things per screen dump, made it very clear and ruled out the Demo Devil, thus enabling her to run multiple good and spot on demonstrations.

I was impressed and learned a few things as well. Also how to approach demonstrations. Sometimes they can be done by a series of screendumps, as showcased during this presentation.

Session 03:
All about AVIcode, one of Microsoft’s recent acquisitions. Impressive it was. It is a showcase what a good MP can do for a SCOM environment. I haven’t seen many times MPs bringing the total SCOM environment to a whole new level of monitoring but AVIcode is one of them.
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The AVIcode MP is meant for monitoring applications based on .NET Framework. The strengths of this MP is based on two facts: the applications which need to be monitored by this MP don’t need to have their code changed AND the load this MP creates on a monitored application is between 3 and 5%!

Another very good thing about this MP is the data the MP collects when something goes wrong. It contains everything the developers require in order to debug the application. The Alert Context tab of the Alert shown in SCOM plays an important role here. AVIcode has extended that tab to a huge extend. Everything required for proper debugging is to be found there:

This session went way too fast. I really enjoyed it.

Another great day at Tech-Ed, old fashion style: all about the SC Suite. A day without the Cloud. Met some good friends and learned a lot today. Nice!

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