TechEd 2011 Day 3

Day three starts with some time in the HOLs again. I knew today was going to be better than yesterday when I saw the notice that the HOL’s were going to be available online after the conference ends.  I worked on three labs, “First Look at DPM 2012”, “Installing Ops Manager 2012”, and “Introduction to Ops Manager 2012>” The DPM lab was odd because you actually use DPM 2010 with patches that make the 2012 functionality available. No 2012 interface and no mention during the tasks of what exactly was new. Not very useful.  The Ops Manager labs were better, but took too long to finish the Intro I had to leave for my session.  Guess I’ll be working on the other HOLS I want to do from work after I get home.

First session was VIR371 Best Practices in Virtualizing RDS and Virtual Desktops.  This was an interactive discussion so we voted on topcis, and unfortunately we never made it to the topic I was interested in, virtualizing RDS hosts, but the discussion was still interesting.  The presenters were form Project VRC (Virtual Reality Check) which they consider TopGear for desktop virtualization.  Check out their site,, for unbiased vendor-neutral analysis.  If you’re using VMware for VDI, check out their presentation “vSphere on Red Bull” for a simple way tro get 20+% performance improvements.

Of to the dining hall for som food, then back to the Expo Hall for some time in the Blogger’s Hub) where I discovered the iPad isn’t so good for blogging. (See So Much for Blogging for background).  My next stop was B101 for VIR305 Packaging with App-V 4.6 SP1. Only problem was I couldn’t figure out where B101 is. After a lot of going in circles and backtracking, I finally decided that the room was actually inside the HOL. I didn’t feel so bad since nearly everyone else commented on what a bear it was o find the room if you hadn’t been there before.

SP1 has some useful improvements.  Getting rid of the requirement for 8.3 names and an actual Q: drive on the sequencing machine get rid of a couple annoying aspects of the App-V product.  Good to see them shedding more of the SoftGrid legacy bits and pieces.  Even better are the package accelerators which bring packaging best practices and info from app recipes right into the sequencer itself.  Little by little, we’re getting close to the point when apps start being deployed this way from the beginning.

I made a quick detour to B3050to say hi to Scott Hanselman (he used to work for one of my college suitemates), then a break in the alumni lounge before hading to the hotel to get ready for try 2 for the UC Roundtable.  Since the Roundtable is Jeff Guillet’s baby, I’ll let him tell this part of the story again. 

Jump over to Jeff’s blog and read the rest of the story. (Kind of sounds like something you would hear on Paul Harvey’s radio show.)

And we’re back…  A few of us left the Roundtable and grabbed cabs to head to the Springboard Party at Ventana’s so we could get there early enough to receive our free copy of Zero Day. We exited the taxi only to see a long line around the corner, which made everyone sad. But wait, since we have green wristbands, we were able to to jump the line and head to the book signing, making everyone happy! The party was quite the event.  Had my picture taken with the three Marks: Mark Russinovich, Marcus Murray, and Mark Minasi. Spent the rest of the evening hanging out with The Krewe.  Party ended at 11, but it was after midnight by the time I managed to get outside.  Having to move people out via elevator really slows things down.

I headed back to my hotel, and the night was so pleasant and my hotel sits right next to Centennial Park, so I figured I’d pop in and just sit and relax for a bit.  I was there for maybe 20 minutes, just enjoying the moment, before I headed back to the hotel. There aren’t a lot of opportunities to relax while you’re at TechEd so you have to grab them where you can.