N2TUG 2023

It’s been a while since we reported on an N2TUG meeting, which was in June of 2019. For reasons we all know too well, there was no meeting held in the intervening years, but that changed on June 15th this year!

We started our planning in a more conservative way than in years past, as we didn’t know what kind of response we’d get. In reviewing 5 different venues, we focused on one with a smaller footprint and budget target. But we were very pleasantly surprised that, within 24 hours of inviting Sponsors, we had reached pledges for most of our targeted revenue. And it only went uphill from there.

We came together at the Hurst Conference Center in Hurst, Texas. This event facility is adjacent to a Hilton Garden Inn, providing a convenient place for our out-of-town attendees and sponsors. Our theme for the event was “Together Again After 3 Years,” as we had been unable to be together for those consecutive years. We left the topics for our sponsors open to their choice, and as a result, we got a very good mix of Security, Continuity, and Utility as a bonus.

The day kicked off with breakfast at 8, and at 9, brief opening remarks by the N2TUG planning committee (President Bill Honaker of XID Software, Inc. and Hewlett Packard Enterprise Liaison Justin Simonds). Next, HPE took to the stage with a double-header of Karen Ramirez, HPE’s North American Director of NonStop Sales, and Roland Lemoine, NonStop Product Manager. Karen led off with a quick look at the 2023 Highlights for the NonStop division, and then Roland got deep into the Futures of the product line.

Richard Buckle of Pyalla Technologies, Industry Consultant to our Platinum Sponsor NTI, followed with a talk on Continuous Adaptation, including a look at the newly-released Partner Portal.

Next up, we brought a special guest. Our former HPE Liaison, Diane Funkhouser, is now involved with a charity that is dear to her heart, and she brought a fantastic story of why that is. She shared the story of Camp Esperanza, run by the Bridewell Foundation. They provide week-long camping sessions for kids that are battling life-threatening disease. Diane’s presentation gave insight to her own family’s successful fight against cancer, delivered as only Diane can! Plus, everyone had a great chance to catch up with Diane, which was a big plus.

This year, we had 2 sponsors that are new to N2TUG, and we are very thankful for their support. 4Tech Solutions couldn’t be there in person at the last minute, but sent TANDSoft’s Jack Di Giacamo to speak briefly on 4Techs’ product, and to discuss Business Continuity and Ransomware from his company. And Rich Greene from Ascert came to share their long-time success in Software Development automated testing.

The Conference Center turned out to be a pleasant surprise, from their modern, clean facility, their attentive staff, and especially the meals they provided! We had a nice breakfast buffet, a lunch buffet with Steak and Chicken (and a particularly sinful Chocolate Cake), and some creative hors d’oeuvres for the evening reception to go with the wine and beer.

Richard Conine of HPE was given the challenging task of presenting after that really great lunch while keeping everyone’s attention. He succeeded with a discussion of the great challenges that Ransomware exposes, that affect even your NonStop systems, and what steps you should be taking to prepare. Paden Holenstein of Gravic talked about the ways that Shadowbase software helps manage important company and customer data. Jeff Boyer of our Gold Sponsor XYPRO followed with a Security Update from his team.

Up next, Mauricio Mier from OmniPayments discussed not only their premier OmniPayments product but also some tools to help with data sharing and systems management. Ed Adams of comforte described how to identify all of the sensitive data you have on your NonStop systems. Rich Greene of Ascert was next (see above), and finally, Peter Mehta from CSP talked about managing vulnerability as well as compliance issues.

The day ended with door prize drawings for the end-user attendees that had made it through the entire day. Prizes were given by NTI, Gravic, and TANDSoft, and we at N2TUG really appreciate it!

The audience stayed very interactive the entire day! Seems that our members really missed the in-person nature, which didn’t really surprise us. But in addition, the sponsors and attendees all found ways to contribute to Camp Esparza to the tune of over $7,500!

Finally, we wish to thank all of our sponsors for making this event possible. In addition to the speakers mentioned above, we’d like to thank our Silver and Breakfast sponsor Odyssey, Platinum and Breakfast sponsor NTI, and Breakfast sponsor Blackwood Systems. as well as sponsor XID Software for providing Bill Honaker’s time and expertise.

We’re looking forward to seeing many of you at NonStop Technical Boot Camp in Denver this September and of course, we hope to see you and your associates at next year’s N2TUG Meeting. Given how well this year’s event went, we have some exciting ideas in store!

Photo Gallery from the 2023 N2TUG meeting

Hurst Conference Center Entrance
Hurst Conference Center Entrance
Lunch was held on the Mezzanine
Lunch was held on the Mezzanine
Attendees at the Keynote
Attendees at the Keynote
Roland Lemoine of HPE giving his Keynote
Roland Lemoine of HPE giving his Keynote
Tim Dunne and Cody Newton, from our Platinum Sponsor NTI
Tim Dunne and Cody Newton, from our Platinum Sponsor NTI
The HCC Atrium
The HCC Atrium
N2TUG Entrance and Registration Area
N2TUG Entrance and Registration Area
This area was available for vendor tables
This area was available for vendor tables
Diane Funkhouser sharing why she
volunteers for Bridewell
Diane Funkhouser sharing why she volunteers for Bridewell
Jack Di Giacamo presenting in the early afternoon
Jack Di Giacamo presenting in the early afternoon
This view shows the whole meeting space, including sponsors
This view shows the whole meeting space, including sponsors
Paden Holenstein makes a point to the audience
Paden Holenstein makes a point to the audience
The audience was still attentive later in the day
The audience was still attentive later in the day
Jeff Boyer representing the Diamond sponsor, XYPRO
Jeff Boyer representing the Diamond sponsor, XYPRO
Jeff Greene speaking for one of our newest sponsors, Ascert
Jeff Greene speaking for one of our newest sponsors, Ascert
4 customer attendees took home Door Prizes
4 customer attendees took home Door Prizes

Author

  • Bill Honaker

    Bill Honaker is a consultant with XID, Ltd., serving the company as its Chief Technology Officer. He has over 44 years of NonStop experience as a Solution Architect, Performance Analyst, Systems Integrator, System Manager, Database Designer, and anything else our customers will pay us for. XID has been keeping its customers satisfied since 1989 by treating them as we would want to be treated. Bill has been a volunteer with both ITUG and Connect since 1988, which partially explains his gray hair. In the past, he served as both editor and director for the Connection magazine, Treasurer in 1993 and 1994, Vice President in 1995, and as ITUG President in 1996. He currently serves as the President of the N2TUG Chapter of Connect, and the Lead of the ITUGLIB Engineering team.

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