SPS Munich – What an event!

Ryan YatesConsultant

Just a dude in his 30's doing things in Tech & trying to break the stigma's around talking about Mental Health

Ok so I’ve neglected the blog recently and that is because I’ve genuinely not had time to think about it.

This has consisted of 2 different SharePoint Saturday’s – one as an attendee (Munich) which I’ll cover in this post & one as a “presenter” (Oslo) and I’ll come back to SPS Oslo in another post.

Firstly, SPSMunich was the first SharePoint Saturday that I’ve attended as a just an attendee and I must say that we were very much spoiled in many ways. It was a great event with such an amazing line up of Speakers, I also submitted sessions but on seeing the ending line-up I genuinely understood that my submitted sessions could not compete with the line-up but to be totally frank that was a good thing as I thoroughly enjoyed being there as an attendee and who can blame me when it was immaculately delivered.

So firstly the Keynote from SPSMunich was delivered by Jeremey Thake (@jthake) in which he delivered some amazing stats including how Office 365 is using 470+ Petabytes which is 470,000Tb – That’s a lot of storage!

After that I went to the session on Building FAQ Functionality in SharePoint delivered by Paul Hunt (or @cimares if you are on twitter) and as have been come to be expected the session was informative and captured all of the key points that you would need to be able to walk away from the session and implement this in your organisation – something that I would recommend you really investigate as SharePoint really is fantastic for that type of information store.

After that we had a coffee break which is something that between sessions really is needed to give attendees change to digest the information delivered to them in which I opportunity to briefly catchup with some of the speakers that I had met at SPSLondon – Maarten Eekels, Thomas Votchen, Elio Struyf, Hans Brender and a few others too throughout the day.

Next up I attended the “Scaling SharePoint 2016 farms with Minrole and other tools” session delivered by Spencer Harbar (@harbars) – now this was an interesting session that for me left me thinking that the implementation of MinRole is just another example of how there are teams at Microsoft that just “Do it our way” and the SharePoint team seem to have been really good at doing this over the years – or at least so it seems from my view.

Next up we had an amazing lunch can if you view the SPCAF Blog - SPSMunich Recap you will see there is a flicker album which goes to show how well the event was orchestrated – you can also find all of the Speakers Slide decks there as well.

After the truly amazing Lunch the next session I attended was none other than that of Erwin van Hunen (@erwinvanhunen) and his session on getting started with the Office Dev PnP Provisioning Engine and it was a tough call between that and the session by Thomas Votchen & Elio Struyf about “An IT Pro & a Developer walk into a bar – SharePoint Search Happy Hour” (a session that I need to have a look through the slides still) although I feel that on the day I made the right decision as the PnP Engine and some of the related PowerShell Cmdlets are proving to be very interesting for me – this is an opportunity for me to diverge from writing cmdlets/functions in actual PowerShell and write them in C# so a good learning opportunity, so I would expect to see more from me on this in the upcoming months.

After this I went to Wictor Wilén’s (@wictor) session on PowerShell DSC & Azure Resource Manager for Deploying SharePoint Farms like a Champ. This was a packed session and there were some great questions being asked by the audience which for me as a more inclined PowerShell guy was great to hear that this was a very much interested in subject for those with SharePoint Bias. One of my key takeaways from this session was that there is too big a gap in knowledge between someone that spends their time learning PowerShell to use as a dynamic language for multiple application administration to those that just want to use it for the application that they are managing. This means that to me there is a real need for there to be simpler and more structured training for those that will likely only use PowerShell for a very small subset of their work. However, that was my takeaway from the questions being asked by the audience, Wictor on the other hand demonstrated some really good and useful points on using DSC to build out your SharePoint Farm and I can only hope that more organisations take this on board in future and look at this as a real possibility (once the xSharePoint Module gets all of the core features built into it)

Next up for me was going to be a difficult one because again there were a few sessions that I wanted to attend – SharePoint Performance Monitoring & Troubleshooting and How to Secure your data in Office 365 – however I ended up going to the Search Queries Explained - A Deep Dive into Query Rules, Query Variables and Search Orchestration by Mikael Svenson (@mikaelsvenson) as I felt that I needed to think about some diversification in my knowledge and as everything covered in Mikael’s session would be stuff that in more development scaled role would be useful to me to understand the mechanics behind it. I certainly left the session wondering when I could try out putting some of this into practice and unfortunately like most things lately it has just not happened.

And lastly the final session of the Day that I attended was Jeremy Thake’s session on Building Slick Office Add-ins to impress your boss where we were shown a number of add-ins that are already available that will boost productivity for those that use them as well as a very quick demo on creating an Office Add-in which was made more entertaining by the fact that the whole demonstration was not being presented from Jeremys device.