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TechEd day 2

June 5, 2007

Day two was another long slog through the world of technology.  I didn’t sleep well last night so I got a bit of a late start and missed breakfast.  BUMMER!  Needless to say I didn’t have much energy for the day.

The first session I went to, though, was great.  It was an overview of the new version of Office Commuications Server 2007, which is essential corporate instant messaging, presence, and voice/video.  SWEET!  Very excited about this product and how companies can leverage it to collaborate across multiple sites.

I then hung around the Technical Learning Center area where all the Microsoft product teams have stations.  I scoped out some more info on Exchange 2007, OCS 2007, and some of the components in Windows Server 2008.  I really like the “Server Core” concept that allows you to deploy a small footprint OS and only turn on the services you want (IIS, DHCP, DNS, DFS, AD, etc.).  This will be quite handy for virtual machines and remote office boxes.  I asked if they saw this as a code base for Windows Server appliances, and got a resounding yes.  Cool.

I also sat in on a session about what’s new in Windows Mobile 6 and a showcase of a number of different device formats.  I’m still not impressed.  They’re sluggish and just not clean when it comes down to the UI and responsiveness.  Blackberry still has the market beat.

Speaking of Blackberry I stopped by their booth in the Partner Expo.  The new “Curve” device has launched!  It’s perfect!  Hopefully I can score one while I’m here.  If not I’ll get one before too long.

After a quick lunch and a trip to the wrong end of the convention center (this place is HUGE) I sat in another Exchange 2007 session, this time on migration and co-existence between 2003 and 2007.  Gleaned a few tidbits, but I don’t really like the presentation style of the guy doing these core Exchange sessions.  Oh well.

I sat in on Steve Riley’s lecture on “Making the Security Tradeoff: Be Secure or Get Work Done.”  What an amazing session.  Quite eye-opening on how to make wise and sane security policy decisions (don’t say no just for the sake of saying no – something I’ve long believed) and how to communicate with business leaders about security topics in ways that make sense to them ($$$).  Pretty cool stuff

I then went to a crappy session on Microsoft’s Virtual Machine Manager (you need to read more than the slides buddy!).  Didn’t get much out of this one at all.

Later in the evening, after a jaunt back to the hotel for dinner, I sat in on a “Birds of a Feather” session entitled “The Physical Datacenter in a Virtual World.”  This was a great discussion of how virtualization is impacting datacenter architecture design at all levels, from power/cooling to networking to load balancing to high availability to backups and recovery.  Awesome session.

I capped off the night with a trip over to Universal Studios City Walk area where a couple TechEd sponsors had rented a club for the evening (last night too).  Had a couple beers with a coworker from Portland and critiqued the musicians (who were all conference attendees who hopped up on stage and played).  It was …. loud.  That’s all I’ll commit too publically.  🙂

Okay – I need to get up in 5.5 hours.  Oye vay.

Will have to get some gift shopping in tomorrow for my daughter and her best friend, who just got a new baby sister this evening!  Congrats to B & C, and little R!  Welcome Melissa!

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