Upcoming Activities (March 2010)

In this post, I discuss some of my activities for the next couple of months. These include the INTERalliance TechOlympics, SharePoint Saturday Michigan, and continuing efforts to get the SharePoint 2010 Disaster Recovery Guide ready for product launch.

2010 is in full-swing, and there seems to be no shortage of activities for me to jump into!  If anything, I need more free time to take on some of the stuff I really want to sink my teeth into (such as a SharePoint 2010 CodePlex project I want to have ready for RTM).  Until I have something more tangible in hand, though, I’ll avoid talking about that topic any further.

Here are some of the things occupying my free time in the short-to-mid term:

TechOlympics Expo 2010

The TechOlympics Expo is the type of event every adult geek wishes they had when they were in high school – a weekend lock-in featuring technical competitions, cool toys, games of every imaginable sort, and pretty much everything else that would get a teenage gearhead jazzed-up.  The underlying goal of the event is to get high school kids interested in technology, careers in technology, and technical opportunities in the Cincinnati area.

The event (on March 5-7) is being put on by the INTERalliance of Greater Cincinnati, and my involvement in the event is kind of a curious thing.  My primary client of the past 2+ years is a big backer of (and heavily invested in) the INTERalliance, so naturally they kick-in help whenever events come up.  I helped the INTERalliance through a last-minute (and somewhat ugly) technical hurdle involving SMS voting for their PharaohFest event last October, and I suspect that played a part in my being asked to help out with the TechOlympics.

With the TechOlympics, I’m part of a team that’s working to make all the “technical stuff” (behind-the-scenes and otherwise) happen.  My responsibilities seem to shift a bit each day, but the bulk of what I’ve been working on is coordinating network logistics and services, translating “the vision” into technical infrastructure, providing some guidance on applications being written to support the event, and generally doing my best at “collision avoidance” to ensure that we don’t miss anything important for the event.

I’m confident that the event is going to be incredible, and it’s been a lot of fun doing the planning thus far.  Seeing everything come together is going to be neat – both for me and for everyone else who has been laboring to make the magic happen!

SharePoint Saturday Michigan

What would an “Upcoming Activities” post be without a SharePoint Saturday announcement!  The next one I’ll be attending is SharePoint Saturday Michigan in Ann Arbor on March 13th.  I’ll be presenting “Saving SharePoint,” the disaster recovery talk that John Ferringer and I have been delivering at various SharePoint Saturday events around the region.  I’ll be flying solo this time around, though, as John has some other things going on that weekend.

SharePoint Saturday Michigan As always, SharePoint Saturday events are free and open to the public.  If you have any interest in learning more about SharePoint, getting some free training, or simply networking and meeting other professionals in the SharePoint space, please sign up!

SharePoint 2010 Disaster Recovery Guide

This announcement is last, but it’s definitely not least.  Some of you are aware, but for those who aren’t: John and I have been working on the SharePoint 2010 Disaster Recovery Guide for a while now.  I’m not going to lie – it’s slow going.  Personally, I’m a very slow writer, and the process itself is exceptionally labor-intensive.  Nevertheless, we’re making progress – one page at a time.

Our goal (and Cengage’s goal for us) is to have the book ready for SharePoint 2010 RTM.  I haven’t seen or heard anything official from Microsoft, but rumor has it that SharePoint 2010 will probably be out sometime in June.  If that’s the case, then John and I are on-track.

If you have suggestions for us, particularly if you read the first book, we would love to hear them.  We’re incorporating a few that we already received (for example, a chapter that covers some real world use-cases), but our ears are open and listening.  We know that DR isn’t a topic that gets everyone overly hot and bothered (unless they’ve lost everything at some point, of course), but our goal is to make the book as useful as possible.  We’d love your help!

Additional Reading and References

  1. Site: CodePlex
  2. Event: TechOlympics Expo 2010
  3. Organization: The INTERalliance of Greater Cincinnati
  4. Event: PharaohFest
  5. Event: SharePoint Saturday Michigan
  6. Partner In Crime: John Ferringer on Twitter
  7. Book: SharePoint 2010 Disaster Recovery Guide

Upcoming SharePoint Activities (January 2010)

In this post, I cover the upcoming SharePoint Saturday Indianapolis event and a couple of its sessions (including one of my own).

You can’t turn a corner these days without running into a SharePoint Saturday event!  At the end of this month, Indianapolis will be holding its SharePoint Saturday on January 30th.

SharePoint Saturday Indianapolis

My disaster recovery (DR) cohort-in-crime, John Ferringer, and I will be presenting “Saving SharePoint” within the event’s IT Pro track.  We’ve given the talk together a handful of times, and the session tries to communicate some of the more important concepts from our DR book, such as the importance of undertanding RPO/RTO, tools that are available for DR out-of-the-box, and more.  We’ll also be covering how the landscape will be changing a bit for DR in the upcoming SharePoint 2010 release.

One of my team members, Steve Pietrek, will also be presenting his new SharePoint and Silverlight presentation – one that I am very anxious to see.  Steve’s been doing an exceptional amount of work in “constrained” SharePoint environments recently, and he’s found all sorts of ways to bend Silverlight to his will.  I’m sure developers will walk away with some novel ideas.

As always, SharePoint Saturday events are free to the public; all they’ll cost you is some time.  Sign up today!

Additional Reading and References

  1. Event: SharePoint Saturday Indianapolis
  2. Twitter: John Ferringer
  3. Book: SharePoint 2007 Disaster Recovery Guide
  4. Blog: Steve Pietrek – Everything SharePoint/Silverlight
  5. Site: SharePoint Saturday Indianapolis sign-up on Eventbrite

Upcoming SharePoint Activities (November 2009)

In this post, I discuss events that I’ll be participating in during the month of November. Events include a SharePoint Conference recap presentation for Microsoft, SharePoint Saturday Cleveland, and a webcast for Idera on SharePoint disaster recovery.

November was looking like a pretty busy month for me before this year’s SharePoint Conference (SPC) in Las Vegas, but the excitement about SharePoint 2010 both in and around the conference seems to have ratcheted things up a notch.  Here’s where I’ll be and what I’ll be doing (in “order of appearance”) in the month of November:

Microsoft “Best of SPC 2009” Event

Many of the folks who wanted to attend the Microsoft SharePoint Conference in Las Vegas this year weren’t able to so for a variety of reasons.  To “share the love” a bit, Microsoft is holding a series of one-day events that brings select sessions from the SPC to cities around the country … or at least around the state of Ohio.  Yes, I’m extrapolating a bit with “around the country,” but it’s an educated guess :-)

In any case, I’ll be delivering a session titled What’s New for SharePoint 2010 Administration and Governance to the crowd that will be attending the event at the Microsoft office in Columbus, Ohio, on November 10th.  The abstract for the session reads as follows:

SharePoint 2010 includes many new and improved tools for providing a flexible and controlled environment and this session will provide an overview of those innovations.

I caught this session while I was at the SPC, and I found it to be good, solid information for IT professionals.  I’m very much looking forward to delivering the content myself!

SharePoint Saturday Cleveland

SharePoint Saturday finally makes its way to Ohio!  SharePoint Saturday Cleveland will be held on Saturday, November 14th, at the Embassy Suites on Rockside Woods Blvd. in Independence, Ohio.

SharePoint Saturday Cleveland

John Ferringer and I will be delivering our SharePoint disaster recovery (DR) talk titled “Saving SharePoint.”  It will differ a bit from previous presentations on the topic in that we can now include SharePoint 2010 content.  After the talk, I’ll be sure to post our slide deck here on my blog.

SPS Cleveland is less than two weeks away, but there are still seats open.  As with all SPS events, there’s no charge for those in attendance – all you need to do is show up and take it all in!

“SharePoint Disaster Recovery Essential Guidelines” Webcast

The “week of whirlwind activity” (roughly speaking) will conclude with a webcast for Idera.  John and I will be presenting SharePoint Disaster Recovery Essential Guidelines on Wednesday, November 18th, and it will be similar to the SharePoint Saturday presentation we’ve given in the past (and will have given a few days earlier at SPS Cleveland).

Todd Klindt recently presented a DR webcast with Idera; if you saw it, you might be asking “do I really need another DR webcast?”  Probably the biggest differences between Todd’s webcast and ours are scope and target audience.  I caught Todd’s presentation, and his webcast was aimed more at the solidly SharePoint admin/IT pro crowd.  John and I include some of the same content and focus, but our webcast is packaged with more of a lean towards classic DR concepts (RTO, RPO, BCPs, etc.).  I would also say that our webcast targets IT decision makers and DR planners as much as it does IT pros, though I feel that both groups will find something of interest in what we have to say.

If our webcast sounds like it would be of interest to you, hop over to Idera’s site and sign up!

Additional Reading and References

  1. Events: Microsoft SharePoint Conference 2009
  2. Events: SharePoint Saturday Cleveland
  3. Company: Idera
  4. Blog: Todd Klindt’s SharePoint Admin Blog
  5. Events: SharePoint Disaster Recovery Essential Guidelines webcast

News Regarding the Upcoming SharePoint Conference 2009

The Microsoft SharePoint Conference 2009 is less than three weeks away. This post covers some news regarding the book signing and “Ask the Experts” panel in which I’ll be sponsoring.

As most folks who work with SharePoint know, Microsoft’s SharePoint Conference 2009 (SPC09) is coming up in just a couple of weeks.  This conference is the premier gathering for SharePoint professionals from all over the world, and this year’s conference promises to be chock-full of exciting sessions and announcements.  Many of the announcements will undoubtedly revolve around SharePoint Server 2010, its capabilities, and (hopefully) some better information regarding its release timeline.

Book Signing

For me personally, the conference includes a couple of very special events.  First, the great folks at Idera are sponsoring a book signing session for John Ferringer and me on Wednesday, October 21st, at 6pm.  If you’re one of the first 50 people to come by the Idera booths (#811 and #813), you’ll get a free copy of the book … and it’ll be signed by John and me.  What more could you ask for?!?!  (and yes, I say that tongue-in-cheek)

Ask the Experts Session

On Monday, October 19th, from 6pm until 7:30pm, Idera will also be sponsoring an “Ask the Experts” session for SPC09 conference participants.  Eric Shupps, Errin O’Connor, John Ferringer, Shane Young, Todd Klindt, and I will be taking (and hopefully answering) questions pertaining to the SharePoint platform, including SharePoint Server 2010.

Each of us on the panel has an “area of expertise.”  For John and me, it probably comes as no surprise to learn that we’ll be fielding questions pertaining to SharePoint DR and backup/recovery.  If you’re going to be at the conference and are interested in attending the session, swing by Idera’s booths (again, #811 and #813) for more information!

Additional Reading and References

  1. Event: Microsoft SharePoint Conference 2009
  2. Company: Idera
  3. Event: “SharePoint 2007 Disaster Recovery Guide” book signing
  4. Event: “Ask the Experts” session

Some Summer SharePoint Activities

In this post, I discuss a couple of the SharePoint-related activities I was involved in over the summer — specifically, the SharePoint Saturday Ozarks event and the creation of a disaster recovery (DR) whitepaper for Idera.

In addition to the more formalized blog posts I’ve been assembling, I wanted to start detailing and informing readers about some of the upcoming SharePoint activities I’ll be involved in.  With the SharePoint Conference 2009 (SPC09) taking place in just a few weeks, there will actually be quite a bit for me to announce.

Unfortunately, I’m not yet able to announce a few specific items on the horizon due to certain “restrictions” … so, in the absence of news on upcoming events, I figured I’d recap some of this summer’s activities.  Hey, even “old news” is still news!

SharePoint Saturday Ozarks

"Saving SharePoint" with Sean and John

SPS Ozarks was held in Harrison, Arkansas on July 18, 2009.  The event was put together and coordinated by Mark Rackley, an all-around great guy who invested a tremendous amount of time and energy to ensure that everything was successful.

For those who aren’t familiar with SharePoint Saturdays: these events have been popping up all over the country and abroad.  The SharePoint Saturday concept is the work of Michael Lotter of B&R Business Solutions, and the SPS events serve to educate and inform anyone willing to spend a Saturday learning about SharePoint.  SharePoint Saturdays are free to attendees, and in addition to being highly informative, the events are a great way to meet and interact with members of the SharePoint community.

John Ferringer (my co-author on the SharePoint 2007 Disaster Recovery Guide) and I presented “Saving SharePoint.”  A picture of us getting set to present appears above and was taken by the lovely Lori Gowin (Thanks, Lori, for allowing me to use your shot!)

Here’s the description that was published for our “Saving SharePoint” session:

A look at the options available for preserving your SharePoint environment and why disaster recovery is so much more than using a tool or running regular back ups. John Ferringer and Sean McDonough, co-authors of the “SharePoint 2007 Disaster Recovery Guide,” will be discussing the benefits, limitations, and potential scenarios for the many tools Microsoft makes available to backup and restore SharePoint, with a focus on finding the right fit for a variety of situations and environments. They will also cover disaster recovery concepts and strategies, explaining terms such as recovery time objectives and recovery point objects and why DR is so much more than just backing up your SharePoint sites.

“Saving SharePoint” was well-received, and both John and I had fun presenting together (a first for us).  It was also great to meet and spend some time with so many of the folks (other presenters) with whom we interact in the SharePoint space!

The slides we used during the delivery of out presentation can be found here.

SharePoint Disaster Recovery Whitepaper

WhitepaperSmall John and I were also approached by Idera over the summer to write a whitepaper on SharePoint disaster recovery.  Idera produces a number of very useful tools for SQL Server, SharePoint, and PowerShell.  Given that they’ve made backup/recovery one of their focuses in the SharePoint space, the whitepaper seemed like a good fit.

Titled “Protect Your SharePoint Content: An Overview of SharePoint 2007 Disaster Recovery,” the whitepaper can be freely downloaded from Idera’s site.  In the eight page paper, John and I walk through a number of the high-level considerations one should bear in mind when beginning the process of developing a SharePoint disaster recovery (DR) strategy.  The whitepaper target audience is IT decision makers and those relatively unfamiliar to DR – not administrators and other technical personnel looking for DR “how to’s” or tools recommendations.  Quite simply, DR is far too big a topic to cover in eight pages; that is, after all, why we wrote a 400 page book on the topic.

If you’re interested in SharePoint DR or tasked with assembling a strategy, have a look at the whitepaper.  After all, it’s free!

Additional Reading and References

  1. Event: Microsoft SharePoint Conference 2009
  2. Event: SharePoint Saturday Ozarks 
  3. Blog: Mark Rackley
  4. Blog: John Ferringer
  5. Book: SharePoint 2007 Disaster Recovery Guide
  6. Blog: Lori Gowin
  7. Slides: Saving SharePoint
  8. Company: Idera
  9. Whitepaper: Protect Your SharePoint Content: An Overview of SharePoint 2007 Disaster Recovery