Tech Ed 2012 – Important Resources

Hello All! We are a mere 10 days until Tech Ed Day 0, with that in mind I’ve began throwing my schedule together and getting organized! I wanted to provide some links and quick notes on important things for you to know. I expanded on some of the quick notes with details about how I handled them.

Useful Links:

Quick Notes:

  • Plan sessions you want to attend
  • Take notes
  • Be involved with #TheKrewe
  • Network with other attendees
  • Pack appropriately
  • Be prepared for little sleep

#60Days2MCSE Challenge – Week 6 Update

Personal Updates:

Over the past 3 weeks I’ve been in and out quite a bit from the twitter conversations; however I have still been following along. Things became a bit overwhelming switching from being a student to full time and the opening of my pool and Diablo III coming out was extremely distracting too. I am not too far off from my current plan; however I do feel I need to catch up considering I still do not have a fully functioning lab. I had given up on the unified installer after wasting tons of time on it and decided that it would be more beneficial for me to build everything out manually. Building everything manually is much much more time consuming however I feel I have greater in-depth knowledge doing it this way and do not regret this decision at all.

In the past 3 weeks most of my time has been spent building my lab; but I’ve also spent time watching videos and finding new resources. I’ve watched a few of the MMS videos and below I have two that I feel are very beneficial to everyone and I’ve also found a new resource that I haven’t gotten to use yet but I do believe will be greatly beneficial.

Useful Resources:

Moving Forward:

I can already feel this is going to be a very challenging Tech Ed, I am excited to see everyone and I strongly encourage everyone continue their studies even after Tech Ed is over!

#60Days2MCSE Challenge – The Plan – The Resources

Challenge Summary:

On April 15th @MichaelBender challenged the readers of MS Learning’s Born To Learn blog. The challenge is to complete the Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert: Private Cloud Certification. This certification requires five exams, I have completed three of these already so I decided that I will take on the challenge of completing two of these exams by/at Tech Ed! I am required to complete two exams, however there an extra exam that is a possible substitute. The exam is the 70-659 (Windows Server 2008 R2, Server Virtualization), which will count as the 70-247. Throughout this blog post I am going to outline my tentative schedule and some of the learning resources I’ve already gathered.

Quick Tips:

  • Read Born To Learn
  • Follow Hash Tag #60Days2MCSE
  • DO LABS! – This is the best way to learn is by doing!
  • Watch Videos – I personally gather more watching than reading

Lets Go To TechEd 2012!

This week at work I was informed that I was approved to go to TechEd 2012! Last year was my first year going, and getting to go back again sounds fantastic to me because it is such a fun and educational time! However planning everything can get a bit tricky because there are so many hotels to choose from, and it gets a lot more complicated planning what all break-out sessions you want to go to. This article is written to help you get approval to go, and getting travel arrangements made. Once time gets closer to the actual convention I will be writing articles on ways to best plan your schedule there.

What do you DO?

I get this question almost daily. It seems like a very easy question to answer, but when it comes to a technical job it becomes much more challenging to answer. When I started working as a Support Technician it was pretty easy. I am the guy who fixes computers, pretty much everyone understands that; even the older people I told it to. I usually got a reply like “OH! You are the guy that hates when they see me calling.” This is always fun to laugh off and tell them nah I love hearing from you it means I have a job!

When you move from front line defense in computer disasters it became much more challenging. Usually the questions start out at with “Where do you work?” The simple reply is I work at Apparatus, and I get another followup question “Oh, what do they do?” This is where it starts getting tricky. I usually just answer we are an IT consulting and managed services company, I know it isn’t the friendliest reply but I’ve yet to come up with an easier way to explain it.

Then it gets to the really tricky part of “What do you do there?” Most people can simply reply with their job title like I used to. However when you say I am a Systems Analyst people get a really confusing look on their face. So you try to clear it up, but when it comes to managing a small web server that supports one website to a server farm of 12+ servers that run just a few websites it gets much more challenging.

There is no simple answer to what I do, but I can say pretty simply you know all those websites you visit online. Things like Facebook, Google, and YouTube. I manage the computers that run websites like those, the websites I manage aren’t quite as popular as those however they still have anywhere from a couple people visiting it daily to over 10,000 thousand people visiting it per day.

The sad part of the answers I can provide are just a small portion of my job. Making the servers work isn’t everything, it goes into creating the servers, to helping people work using the software on the server. I also spend a good chunk of times in meetings about new environments and even teaching people about the environments you know about.

Overall when you want to know what I do… just trust me when I say that what I do makes the world what it is today.