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E2EVC Barcelona 2017

On Friday the 17th of November E2EVC Barcelona 2017 started. The unique event by and for the community. I really enjoyed attending this conference for many times in the past and again it was a wonderful experience this time. Traditionally I have blogged my experiences in this blog of all three days.

As I was flying in on Friday morning so I just arrived at the moment that Alex was opening the event. So the first session I actually attended was  the ControlUp session by Eugene Kalayevin (which is traditionally the first actual presentation on E2EVC. The nice thing about ControlUp that the whole session is actually showing the product instead of marketing slides. Eugene started off with some well-known features of ControlUp (if you already have seen the product or presentations earlier). Based on question Eugene explains about the current status of monitoring VMware Horizons (which is on the road map). Next question was about Linux support, which is currently actively researched and is aimed for H2 2018. Next topic was about monitoring AWS and Azure, where ControlUp also shows the costs of using the cloud for AWS. Azure is currently not supported. Next topic was Control Insights, the product for historical analysis. Eugene explained the product and showed in a live demo. Beside the cloud version there is on-prem version available based on another product that gathers data. Some new features in 7.1 were shown, like support for Citrix NetScaler and support for vGPU monitoring.

Next session was Your Modern Workplace Strategy by Adnan Hendricks. After a big promo to get E2E VC to Capetown Adnan really started with his presentation starting with the Win10 releases. Adnan discusses that Microsoft is changing the rules regularly. Next topic was EMS (different version, new is Intune for Education) and Windows auto-pilot. Also paths to Modern Management were discussed (cloud first, big switch transition, group by group transition, iterative/co-management), where Adnan dived a bit into more details about the co-management transition. Adnan also traditional versus modern were compared on topics like management options and configuration & security. Adnan showed the MDM Migration Analysis Tool. Last topic was about modernizing applications.




Claudio Rodriguez, Christiaan Troll and Thomas Poppelgaard were next on stage with the session Manage and share your PowerShell script collection with OneGlass. Claudio kicked off with the problem: different consoles for products (from the same vendor), several vendors involved, automation takes time to build (vendor dependent). The solution of Claudio is single plan of glass for building and management environment: They called it OneGlass and exists of four different modules. Christiaan dived into more detail about the PowerShell modules which has the following characteristics: Organizing/Sharing, Command Orchestrator, RoboGUI. The showed the product in real life for example running a migration from one supplier to another. They discussed about PowerShell Paint Point, which can be made easier via RoboGUI.

After this session it was time for lunch time. We did some import networking (read we went eating at Spanish style with a nice group of people) so I missed some session I would like to see (but happily they are recorded and will become available somewhere in the future) as networking took a sometime 😊. I also needed to check-in into the hotel. After the sessions there was a nice party on the roof of the hotel and logically after that it was (again) time to continue networking during a nice diner with some good Dutch guys.

Day two started at 10:00 with the session Graphics Acceleration for Office Workers Part by Rasmus Raun-Nielsen. He started off with explaining the GPU use cases, where Rasmus is focusing on the Office Workers. He continued with a recap of his results of the test of last year presentation, followed by the results of Windows 10 and Office 2016 (including his set-up used for the tests). Check the slide deck for all figures but in general the process of the application CPU wise don’t make a difference, however with vGPU on DWM process. Exception is IE, which shows that hardware rendering is utilizing less CPU with a vGPU (on most cases). Rasmus also discussed NVENC versus NVDEC shortly. Rasmus summarized that all user type could benefit from a GPU because of the CPU offload.

After the session I had a meet-up with some other people with Bas van Kaam to go through the portfolio of Liquidware (Stratussphere and Profile Unity). Always good to be updated with the products available in the market, that is also E2E VC.

Next session I attended was Microsoft RDS – current state and future vision by Benny Tritsch and Freek Berson. They started off with explaining their REX Analytics (Benchmarking too) and the tests were executed on request of the Microsoft RDS Team. Benny showed the comparison test for example RDP10 versus PCoIP. RDP10 was performing better on low bandwidth and it consumes less bandwidth and use the GPU better. Next topic was project Honolulu. Benny discussed the architecture of Project Honolulu (HTML5 new Server management utility via Gateway/Web Server). Benny showed the utility in a live demo) for the basic functions.  Freek continued with project Honolulu specifically for RDS, followed by RDmi (which will be roles). Freek discussed RDmi (no domain joined servers required, no inbound ports anymore, updated RD client to authenticate to Azure). Also Freek demoed the current beta of RDmi both on the back-end sides (incl PowerShell and RESTAPI) as the client side. It was nice that the RDS team allowed to show the RDmi preview by Freek and Benny.

After executing my second passion (photography) and some networking again I went to the session Comparison between display protocols by Bram Wolfs and Rasmus Raun-Nielsen. They started off with the available remote display protocol, where Bram and Rasmus are focusing on RDP, Blast and HDX and the characteristics of the protocols based on bitmap remoting codec, video codec, video codec with text optimization). Next topic was NVENC and NVDEC and how they are available in the protocols. Bram continued with Remote Display Analyzer. He mentioned the new features in version 2.0. Next topic was a comparison of video codecs, but it was not comparing apples with apples as RDP did not have the same coded. They show the video comparing the protocols. HDX: high compression, decent frame quality, Blast: high frame and CPU usage, RDP: good frame quality, highest bandwidth usage. Bram also tested with a PDF as a bitmap test (HDX: very low bandwidth, great caching mechanism, Blast: highest bandwidth, RDP: Medium bandwidth). Rasmus continued with takeaways. They had some time left, so Bram showed a video in which he compared the different HDX codecs. No video codec: lowest CPU, highest bandwidth, highest GPU, Entire screen: highest CPU, Lowest bandwidth, For active changing regions: best of both worlds.

After again a good diner with another nice group of people and some sight-seeing (actual a walk from one place to another) day three started with a session of Helge Klein about Podio and Globiflow. Helge started explaining that data is actually imported. Helge shared some rules he is using (e-mail is for outside only, keep conversations in context, topics should be self-documenting) and Podio helps with all of the above. Helge continued with explaining Podio (visual database, notifications/activity stream, commenting everywhere, tasks, chat, good search [except chat]. Podio premium required for Globilfow automation, $ 24 dollar per user per month). Next topic was where Podio can be used for: centralize information, store data only once, team collaboration, workflows (with a help of Globiflow). Helge continued explaining workspaces, apps and some little gems available. Helge also mentioned some things that could be better: tables, webform, recurring checklist. Helge continued with explaining Globiflow enabled good workflows possibilities according Helge. Workflows can be triggered (create, update, by another flow and other options). He described the possibilities of workflow actions. Helge demoed the Globiflow functionalities by showing the Create PDF Quote they are using and auto-calculating time sheet.

Between those session Alex did a quick end keynote and the shuttlebus service was started. Also the mystery of the forgotten name of the 4th E2EVC Grandfather was solved, it appears that I was that 4th new Grandfather 😊.

Last session I attended before going to the airport again is the session of Simon Frost about Citrix Workplace. Simon started off explaining Citrix Workspace and which components are involved (identity knowledge, login, broker/SSO/condimental access, conditional authentication, just enough policy). Simon continued with explaining the Citrix Cloud Identity Control, followed by the smart context use. Next the deployment scenarios were discussed (Citrix cloud with on prem, SaaS/Web Apps, Smart Spaces was the next topic Simon was discussing, followed by the admin experience. Also the Analytic Service was part of the presentations.

After that session it was time for the shuttlebus. During the ride to the airport we had some good discussions about topics for upcoming events and the event in general. The next EU spring event will be held in Amsterdam from 8-10 June. Registration is already open, so you can already register (and if you care about community you should). Rumors about the location for the autumn event are already there. I heard Athens or Lisbon, but maybe other cities could apply as well (should I remember Alex to wonderful cities like Madrid, Valencia, Milan or Budapest).