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Why am I Excited for "Some Assembly Required: Making Your IT Tools Work Together?"

Community Manager

Why Am I Excited for “Owning Your Inheritance: An Orion Zero to Hero Journey?”

I had the privilege of hearing Ben speak at our New York and Phoenix SWUG about his monitoring journey. His story isn’t unlike many other IT pros: he walked into a job, was provided a computer, given a login, and then was handed this “thing” and was told it was now his responsibility. Ben and I chat about some of the challenges when walking into an existing Orion Platform install and the tough questions you need to ask to get the most out of your time and the monitoring solution.

Like him, like myself, and probably like many of you, inheriting an Orion Platform install can be a challenge because you weren’t there for the initial care and feeding of the solution. Now it’s your responsibility and you have no idea where to even begin. Ben will provide some tips and tricks on figuring out where to start and what to do when you decide you’ve finally had enough. We’ve all asked in our heads (and maybe out loud), “What was the previous admin thinking?”

Why Am I Excited for “Intro to APIs for People Who Hate to Program?”

First off, I get to chat with Leon and Casey about programming and APIs. There’s no doubt this is good company. Aside from the good company, I really enjoyed hearing about Casey’s experiences, which led me to better understand how RESTful APIs work in real-world scenarios and how Leon’s using APIs to monitor previously difficult-to-monitor network gear. We each share some examples of how we use APIs and how they can be used by the IT pro to have a better understanding of your infrastructure.

Oh! Did I forget to mention we pay homage to one of the greatest science fiction franchises of all time? Come for the API goodness—stay for the pop culture geekiness. If you listen closely, you might even catch an audio cameo by MrsSigma.

Why Am I Excited for “When a Map? Why a Map? How a Map? Why Orion Maps Are for Everyone?”

Kevin from years ago was very much the “I don’t need a map” guy. I knew what was connected to each other, I knew how to figure out what was talking to what, and I knew where to look for the things I didn’t know about immediately. I guess that means I knew where all the IT bodies were buried. No node or application could hide from me. But in the intervening years, I’d like to think I’ve matured (at least regarding my opinions on maps) and part of this is thanks to Jeff, who explained to me why maps are so important to providing a good monitoring solution.

If you’ve heard Jeff talk about maps, you’d think he talked about nothing else. The man loves his maps, and I can’t help but love them a little myself because of his passion. The great thing about Jeff is he can talk about maps and how they can help your monitoring infrastructure for hours. The bad thing about Jeff is he can talk about maps for hours.

Let’s see if we can keep Jeff to the reasonable time limit this time!

Why Am I Excited for “Crating Alerts that Get Noticed?”

I hate alerts.

Let me rephrase: I hate alerts that have the wrong information or are organized so badly, you can’t get the gist of the alert in a scant few moments. You ever get an email with a raw SNMP trap message in it full of OIDs and varbinds? Yeah. Those ones. I hate those. And do you know what ultimately happens with those alerts? Yep—right into the recycle bin.

I don’t want any alerts to fall into this category—but especially not your alerts. I want your alerts to get noticed. I want the recipients to be able to make good decisions based on the information. If we’re honest with ourselves, ignored alerts can eventually cascade up to a system-wide failure. I don’t want that. You don’t want that. No one wants that. Let’s take a little time to make our alerts look good—really good. I can show you, in a few simple steps, how easy it is to take your alert game to the next level.

About the Author
Kevin's first computer was the family TI-99/4A. He's learned computing the best way possible: by fixing his own broken machines. He was a SolarWinds customer for nearly 10 years before joining the company. He's worked the range of IT jobs: from the 3-person consultancy to the international law firm. Along the way, he's become a SolarWinds advocate and evangelist of monitoring glory. His passions include shooting archery, blacksmithing, playing D&D, and helping IT professionals leave at a reasonable time each and every day.