Tips For Presenting Remotely

Published On: 2020-08-03By:

Presenting a conference session to a large number of IT professions is probably one of the most nerve-wracking things that an IT professional can do. Generally speaking, we aren’t trained in public speaking, and a lot of the time we are introverts.

Giving the current Covid-19 pandemic that’s affecting the entire world, all the conferences that haven’t been canceled have gone to a virtual model where the conference is being held online. This introduces some additional challenges to the presenters as suddenly you are presenting to your computer screen for anywhere from 5-10 minutes for a lightning talk (or Speaker Idol session) to 6 hours (or more) for a pre-con.

As we prepare for the PASS Virtual Summit that’s coming up in a couple of short months, Joey (b|t) and I wanted to take a little time to talk through what the presenters who are presenting remotely are going to have, what they are going to want near them, and what they can expect when giving a remote presentation.

We obviously aren’t clairvoyant, but between the two of us we do have hundreds if not thousands of hours of remote presenting experience. So we’ve seen the good and the bad. And we’ve experienced tons of problems as well as successes that we want to share in our upcoming webcast. The webcast is September 17, 2020 at 11am Pacific / 2pm Eastern / 6pm UTC and we hope to see you there.

Denny

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Practical Security for Your Enterprise Application /s

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I’ve written of bunch of blog posts on the right way to architect your cloud or on-premises network applications. Those are pretty popular posts–but yet we continue to see organizations (ahem, Garmin) have major problems with ransomware, but security is hard, and as we’ve seen in the last few months, people can’t even do easy stuff like wearing a mask to prevent the spread of a deadly pandemic. So let’s talk about some security stuff you can do that doesn’t require any effort on your part. I recently had a chance to talk to Flip Jupiter, CTO at a stealth startup Software as a Service company about their security practices.

SQL Server Runs Faster as SA

This is a secret I only tell my best clients, that Microsoft hides from you. You see when you login to SQL Server and execute a query, there’s an in-memory cache that gets checked to see if you have permissions against an object. You know how to fix that problem? Make everyone SA and you bypass that cache, and your workload can now run .00004% faster. You also probably want to run all of your queries with NOLOCK hints, because everyone knows locks are stupid and slow everything down.

Firewall, Shmirewall

Many organizations have tiers to their networks, and limit traffic between these tiers. While this is typically enforced at the network layer, operating systems like Windows and Linux have software firewalls which provide an additional layer of overhead that you have to deal with when trying to connect disparate systems. If you keep these “security enhancements” in place, it means you actually have to understand your network traffic and know what ports talk to which other other ports. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

vintage black windmill during sunset
Photo by Tom Swinnen on Pexels.com

Networks should have the Topology of the Netherlands

Many organizations have layered networks that limit the flow of traffic from one segment of the network to another. This requires a network administrator that knows what they are doing in their job, and means you probably can’t play CandyCrush on the same network your production servers are on. Worse, it means, you might actually have to have a jump host, or learn how to run commands remotely. That sounds hard–I really prefer to RDP directly to my production servers. (Pro-tip–if you give your servers a public IP address, you can RDP to them without “the man” monitoring your web traffic over the company VPN). It also means you should be able to access all of your customer data from every laptop in the company, we don’t want to delay our metadata sales process.

Patches? We don’t need no stinking patches

We’re a serious enterprise, and that means our servers need 12 9s of uptime (yeah, I know, but we didn’t have budget for that second node, or second data center). And since one time, my cousin’s friend’s sister bricked her eight year old laptop because of a Windows Update bug (or maybe the battery died, but who can be sure) we can’t risk the downtime to patch production. Everyone one knows software is best the moment its shipped and gets better all the time, which is why our production workloads run on Windows 2003 and SQL Server 2005.

Security Team? We need more Devs

Security is such a boring topic–you can tell because no one goes to security talks at IT conferences. Besides, security features don’t sell–everyone knows that. So we killed our security team and replaced them with a team of offshore devs. We saved money, and those security people were always nagging us about our network. The offshore dev team is writing some excellent code with their entity framework toolkit.

Kerberos, or Spot as we call it.

One of the key tenants of Active Directory is Kerberos, which is named for the dog that guards the gates of Hades in Greek mythology. We like to call that spot. Kerberos is complicated, with its identities, SPNs, and that damned double hop problem. We solved for this by making all of our users domain admin. Some people say this might be a “security risk”, but we trust all of users, and we know that they won’t do anything like click on a phishing email or download software from the Russian mafia.

You Made it This Far, What’s the Punchline?

In case you haven’t figured it out yet, Flip Jupiter is not a real person, and I’ve just walked through six of the worst security practices that you can possibly do. You should note you should never, ever do any of these practices in real life (though I’ve shutdown Windows Firewalls in way too many demos because I procrastinate). Security should be at the front of mind for all IT professionals whether they be administrators, developers, DevOps, or CTOs. Security isn’t a tool you can bolt on to your killer app, you need to think that way from the beginning. Note: for those you who are really dense: this post is sarcasm and you shouldn’t do any of this

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Zeroing In: DCAC’S Zero-Downtime Cloud Migration Wins 2020 People’s Choice Award

Published On: 2020-07-28By:

The American Business Awards® announced that Denny Cherry & Associates Consulting’s new “Zero-Downtime Migration” cloud solution has won the People’s Choice Award for Migration-As-A-Service.

OCEANSIDE, CA, July 28, 2020 /24-7PressRelease/ — After six weeks of voting and more than 87,000 votes cast worldwide, the American Business Awards® announced that Denny Cherry & Associates Consulting’s new “Zero-Downtime Migration” cloud solution has won the People’s Choice Award for Migration-As-A-Service.

Stevie Awards
People’s Choice Logo

DCAC’s Zero-Downtime Migration was also the judges’ Gold Medal pick at the American Business Awards® in June, thanks to DCAC’s well-documented methodology and history of breaking migrations into parts for seamless cloud transformations. While zero downtime is the focus of their cloud solution, the team’s record also includes saving companies up to 30% on their IT infrastructure.

DCAC CEO Denny Cherry commented, “On behalf of DCAC, we’d like to thank each and every database administrator, IT executive, and friend that took the time to vote for us. We’re grateful every day for your support.”

With more than a dozen awards for IT Consulting, DCAC is now renowned as the premiere boutique data solutions and cloud solutions consultancy in the U.S. With more than 80% of their staff Microsoft MVP’s, DCAC offers a host of data and cloud services expertise including architecture, migration, modern data platform, data warehousing, cloud security, and performance tuning.

“On behalf of DCAC, we’d like to thank each and every database administrator, IT executive, and friend that took the time to vote for us. We’re grateful every day for your support.” – CEO Denny Cherry

About Denny Cherry & Associates Consulting

Award-winning Microsoft Partner and Gold Platform certified Denny Cherry and Associates Consulting assist companies with reliably attaining IT goals such as Azure Migration, HA, scalability, SQL Server virtualization and acceleration, while finding ways to save on costs. With clients ranging from Fortune 50 corporations to small businesses, their commitment to each is the same: to provide a deft, high-speed IT environment that maximizes every aspect of their platform: from architecture, to infrastructure, to network.

About the American Business Awards®

Stevie Awards are conferred in seven programs: the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards, the German Stevie Awards, The American Business Awards®, The International Business Awards®, the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, the Stevie Awards for Great Employers, and the Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service. Stevie Awards competitions receive more than 12,000 entries each year from organizations in more than 70 nations. Honoring organizations of all types and sizes and the people behind them, the Stevies recognize outstanding performances in the workplace worldwide. Learn more about the Stevie Awards at http://www.StevieAwards.com.

Media Inquiries may be directed to:
Kathleen Hannon, Publicist:
704-912-0209
kathleen@dcac.com

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Office 365 Backups

Published On: 2020-07-27By:

One of the big assumptions that people have about Office 365 is that the data within your Office 365 account is backed up and will be recovered in the event of a failure of the Office 365 services. It won’t be. In the event of a failure of the Office 365 servers that host your mailbox, Microsoft makes no guarantee that there will be any email in your mailbox. Believing me isn’t requires, go check your Microsoft O365 EULA, I’ll wait.

A person using a laptop with a women in the background.

As you can see from the EULA there’s nothing that Microsoft guarantees about being able to recover your mailbox data in the event of a failure.

This is why DCAC offers a backup service for people using Office 365 which allows for a robust enterprise solution for email, calendar, OneDrive, SharePoint, Groups, Tasks, Teams, and Contacts.

There are lots of CSPs that will sell a company an Office 365 license with no thought of taking backups. Many don’t even tell their clients that this is something that they should be looking into. In fact, I’m not the only person who thinks so.

Not having a backup solution for an Office 365 is just a plain dangerous idea. Recovery from system failure is just one reason to have backups. Backups also protect you from a Ransomware attack where a Ransomware attack has encrypted all the emails in the mailbox. It also protects you from a rouge employee that deletes all their emails before leaving the company. Without proper backups, the emails that they deleted are simply gone, with no recourse.

To get backups for your Office 365 solution, contact our team today and we can get that set up for you in a few minutes. If you have purchased Office 365 through a reseller or integrator, that’s fine. We can still set up your backups for you through our solution in just a few minutes.

Denny

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Globally Recognized Expertise

As Microsoft MVP’s and Partners as well as VMware experts, we are summoned by companies all over the world to fine-tune and problem-solve the most difficult architecture, infrastructure and network challenges.

And sometimes we’re asked to share what we did, at events like Microsoft’s PASS Summit 2015.

Awards & Certifications

Microsoft Partner   Denny Cherry & Associates Consulting LLC BBB Business Review    Microsoft MVP    Microsoft Certified Master VMWare vExpert
American Business Awards People's Choice American Business Awards Gold Award    American Business Awards Silver Award    FT Americas’ Fastest Growing Companies 2020       Best Full-Service Cloud Technology Consulting Company
   Insights Sccess Award    Technology Headlines Award    Golden Bridge Gold Award    CIO Review Top 20 Azure Solutions Providers
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