Category Archives: MVP

Experts and Community unite again at Experts Live Europe in Berlin

Last week I was back at this great Community conference, previously known as System Center Universe Europe (SCU Europe), and this year for the first time under the name Experts Live Europe, part of the Experts Live network (http://www.expertslive.org). This conference is well known for its great content, top speakers, sponsors and great community, where you meet friends old and new, and generally have a great time the 3 days the conference lasts.

This year the conference was held in the BCC by Alexanderplatz in Berlin, the same venue as last year. With almost 400 people from 28(!) different countries, I was very proud again to be among the great set of Experts and MVPs presenting sessions on topics from Cloud, Datacenter, Management, PowerShell, IoT, Azure, EMS, and more.

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I presented two breakout sessions, the first one was about how to “Take your Azure AD and Intune Management Skills to the Next Level with Microsoft Graph API and PowerShell”, a practical and demo-heavy session.  The PowerShell script I used in the demos can be found in my GitHub repository: https://github.com/skillriver/ELEU2017-Public

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The second session I presented was on “Mastering Azure Active Directory v2”, where I discussed features in the new Azure AD Portal for Azure AD Administrators that have previously used the classic portal or Office 365 admin portal for managing users, licenses, and admin roles and more. We also looked at the Azure AD v2 PowerShell, that will replace the v1 (MSOL) cmdlets. Look to my Gist repository for several examples on using Azure AD v2 cmdlets, https://gist.github.com/skillriver.

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I also had the pleasure to be in a discussion panel with Microsoft Intune Principal Program Manager Simon May, CDM MVP Tudor Damian and my fellow Norwegian EMS MVP Jan Ketil Skanke, where we had good questions and discussions from the attendance on the topic Identity, Security and Compliance.

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The days went by really fast, and soon it was time for the closing note and the traditional trivia with funny stories and facts from the past conferences. One of the questions was how many have attended all 5 conferences (speakers, sponsors and attendees), the correct answer was not known, but the audience who had done this was invited onto the stage, and 10 people (in addition to Marcel) had their loyalty appriciated with claps and cheers from the room. And, I’m one of those that has been to all conferences 🙂

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So with that ended the 5th annual conference that used to be SCU Europe and is now Experts Live. I have made some great friends there, and the conference has a family feeling going back there every year. There has been some early mornings, and some late nights, as it should be.

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Thanks for me, Berlin and Experts Live, next year it will another place, it will be exiting to see where it will be. I know I will be back, hope you will to!

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Renaming and rebranding my blog

I have been thinking about this a while, as my previous blog URL address systemcenterpoint.wordpress.com and title SystemCenterPoint not longer accurately reflected the blog content I produce.

When I created the blog for over 4 years ago, I was heavily invested in System Center products, and especially Service Manager and Operations Manager, and most of my content published on the blog was related to that.

These days, I still work a lot with SCSM and SCOM, and with partners such as Cireson, SquaredUp and itnetX, but also more and more with Cloud and Azure based solutions such as Operations Management Suite. The same with System Center Orchestrator, where I now automate more with PowerShell and Azure Automation than Orchestrater Runbooks.

In addition, being awared Microsoft MVP for Enterprise Mobility I also focus a lot on Identity and Access Managment and Security with Azure AD and EM+S!

So, what to rebrand my blog URL and Title to?

When I was at the MVP Summit recently I was very inspired by James Whittaker that had a session on the importance of story telling. And he challenged us, what is your story?

My story is not finished, it is a working progress. But if I should start somewhere I would be saying to anyone that asks that: “I’m the Go To Guy!”

I realize that this title is not exclusive to me, many people are Go To Guys in their workplace or community. But I’m already labelled (one of the) Go To Guy in my workplace, amongst many customers and as a MVP I’m aspiring to be a Go To Guy for many in the communities I participate in.

So, thats why my blog now has a new URL: http://gotoguy.blog ! And the blog title has been updated to GoToGuy Blog.

Looking forward to produce more great content on the blog!

(PS! All old references to systemcenterpoint.wordpress.com will of course work for the future until eventually not needed anymore)

Sleepless in Seattle – Impressions from MVP Summit 2016

As I’m just back from attending my first ever MVP Summit, I wanted to take to opportunity to recap some of the impressions and experiences I had. One note though, the first rule about the MVP Summit, is not to talk about the MVP Summit! The reason for this is that generally all that is shared with us MVPs from Microsoft is under NDA. All the while, there are some general information that can be shared, which shows the importance this Summit not only has for the MVPs, but also for Microsoft and the Product Groups, the Community and in the end, the customers themselves.

As the title of this blog post refers to, sleep can be hard to come by. Both because of many MVPs are travelling from far and beyond, myself fighting a jetlag and time difference of 9 hours to Norway, but also that the fellowship of MVPs in official and unofficial social gatherings on the evenings quickly see hours fly away.

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What is the MVP Summit?

The MVP Summit is held once a year at Microsoft Campus in Redmond, just outside of Seattle, Washington. All active MVPs from around the world are invited, and many will attend. At the Summit MVPs will have sessions with the Product Groups, where discussions and feedback are central, as well as looking forward to what might or will come in the future. This is where the NDA is vital. In addition to the sessions there are a lot of networking with fellow MVPs and the members and managers of the Product Groups.

Most MVPs stays at selected hotels in Bellevue outside Seattle, not far from Redmond, with the Hyatt Regency as the social hub, and we get transported to and from Redmond.

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My impressions of the MVP Summit

As this was my first MVP Summit, I had 3 things I looked forward to:

  1. Meet fellow peers and MVPs
  2. Meet the Product Groups
  3. The NDA stuff!

And I can safely say that it delivered on all 3 points! Over the years I have met and been introduced to many MVPs in the community, but know I had the chance to first hand see and meet many of the community leaders I have read blog posts from or followed on Twitter.Always nice to see and meet the rock stars 🙂

It was also very nice to meet of with the Product Groups and engage with them in sessions, it’s always helpful with a name and a face, and they are genuinely interested in any feedback we can give from our own opinions and from our customer experiences.

A lot of information, roadmaps, features, private previews and more were shared as well, which of course are under strict NDA. So you will have to wait for that, no need to ask, but wait patiently for exciting things to come.A general feeling is that Microsoft is more open and engaging than ever, and the best of times are yet to come!

So with that I will conclude this short blog post, and although I cannot share any more details I can assure that Microsoft and MVPs together are working together for the benefit of customers and end users. It has been great attending my first MVP Summit, and hopefully I will be back next year!