Azure This Week

Microsoft Ignite 2022: First impressions

Episode description

Our special episode this week finds Brian Roehm and Matthew Ulasien on the ground at Microsoft Ignite 2022! Brian and Matt discuss the main themes of Day 1, as well as some highlights from the talks they’ve seen, and an all-important swag report! Tune in next week for a full round-up!

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0:00 Introduction
1:33 First impressions
2:37 Theme: Doing more with less
3:15 Theme: Modern tech solving current issues
4:00 Theme: Upskilling with cloud
4:51 Swag report
5:28 The return of in-person
6:12 Azure Sentinel
7:00 Theme: Security
7:39 Microsoft Cloud Challenge

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Series description

Azure This Week is your weekly news roundup for all things Azure. Join our expert hosts as they cover everything you need to know about the past week’s developments, keeping it short, fun and informative. Whether you’re just beginning your cloud journey, or you know your stuff, there’s something for everyone!

Hey, what's up gurus? Welcome to Azure This Week, I'm Brian Roehm and in this very special Azure This Week we are here, live in Seattle. No, this is not a green screen. We are here live in Seattle at Microsoft Ignite. And so I'm gonna be talking to you about the conference, what's going on, what's new, what's changed from other Microsoft Ignites, what are we excited about? Not only that, I have a very special guest, Matt Ulasien will be joining me. He's one of the architects here at A Cloud Guru.

In fact, he's the principal architect here at A Cloud Guru. And so he's gonna be talking to me because this is actually his first Ignite. So we'll get his impressions as well. Super excited to be here with you. With that, let's just dive right in and get started.

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I'll drop a link in the description. All right, we are ready to start talking about Microsoft Ignite. I have Matt here with me as I've already introduced. And let's start off Matt, why don't you tell us this is your first Ignite. Yes, it is.

What's going on? What do you think about Ignite? I think it's a real great time. Really great to be here at my first Microsoft Cloud conference and hearing about all the new announcements and innovations with Azure. Also Microsoft 365 security, whether we're talking about Azure proper, Microsoft 365, or really any other related Microsoft service, and just really great being in the atmosphere of all the new Microsoft Cloud stuff going on. Yeah, you know, this is my actual fourth Ignite and I can tell you that it is fantastic just to be back from the pandemic and being able to be live with everyone else and sitting through the the convention and listening to the different the different talks and it's been extremely nice to be back. So looking at Microsoft Ignite, are there any big themes that you picked up this year? Well, really kind of the two main themes that was really hammered on in the opening keynote is number one, I think like their official theme is doing more with less.

And it really talks about how it's kind of a way of saying work smarter not harder. So let's give you the technology tools that you need to be able to get the most good out of them without having to invest heavily in a whole variety of different third party or cobbled-together solutions. Another big thing that they really opened up with, in fact, it was really kind of the main opening statement before they went into the rest of that, is it's, it's an overused phrase, but these are uncertain times, so on and so forth, but the way forward to actually solve the problems, the practical problems that all the craziness in the world is bringing about is modern technology. There's a common theme of modern technology can help solve all these different problems, especially with organizations that don't have infinite funds to be able to work their way through them. One of them that, one of the issues or one of the highlights I talked about at near the end of their keynote or I think it may have been more of the fireside chat, was really emphasizing different non-profits who, you know by nature have very limited budgets and talking about how Microsoft is investing in those nonprofits from a technology standpoint to give them the tools that they need to in order for them to be able to provide whatever solutions, or solve whatever problems those organizations are looking to resolve.

Yeah, you know, for me, I think it's the same kind of thing. I'm hearing over and over again this uncertain times and how cloud is really the solution to that. And so looking at that, we still have discussions about hybrid of course, and we still have solutions or discussions about no-code and low-code solutions. But the, the message around that is kind of shifted a little bit. It's turned into we can upscale your employees quickly with no-code or low-code solutions.

Moving to the cloud is going to allow you to better activate and better do the job functions that you need at a lower cost. And in uncertain times when you're looking at a tightening budget, that's incredibly critical. Now, similar kinds of concepts, but the messaging has changed from previous Ignites. So beyond that, you know, Matt, what are there any negatives to Ignite? Positives? What, what else do you have? You know, it's overall a generally positive experience. Again, this is my first Microsoft Cloud conference, so I don't really have that much to refer it to.

I will have to say, just on a personal note, that the the swag game is a little bit lacking now. In the fireside chat, they actually highlighted on purpose how they purposely went either swag light or shag free...swag free. Mostly for sustainability reasons because I kind of see the perspective where you get so much junk that you don't actually use and it kind of just sits up in landfills. But at the same time, I kind of like all those t-shirts and hats and whatnot. So I had kind of mixed feelings about that.

I can understand why they went that route, but at the same time, I like free stuff as well. Yeah. You know, from my perspective, I can tell you, looking at other Ignites in person, it has definitely been a huge change this year. I'm gonna go out on a limb and say, I don't think it's completely just because of the environment. I think some of this plays into the pandemic and some of this plays into lowering budgets and tightening budgets.

And so what are we gonna do in uncertain times? I will say it's been really, really neat getting back in-person and having done them online versus in-person, in-person, there's a lot more connectivity and there's a lot of sessions actually that you can get into that are not recorded. And so you get better discussions with experts to kind of walk through problems that you may be having regardless of what that fits into. Just an example of one of the sessions I actually just got out of an interesting one, specifically focusing on the Azure Sentinel, which is Microsoft's SIEN product, which is short for security. I'm gonna mess this acronym up. It's basically the security log ingestion suite for threat detection.

And they actually had a hands-on lab guided by Microsoft employees saying, Okay, we're gonna set up Sentinel, We're gonna set up a log analytics workspace and actually provided a live hands-on lab environment kind of so much to the environments that we provide, to be able to actually demonstrate the product in action. Just experiences like that, being able to go hands on with a product and kind of understand, you know, kind of the, the hands on tactile feel, how it works and just, you know, what problems it solves is really kind of a nice thing, In addition to like the overall conference atmosphere, which I greatly best. Sure. So one more thing that I wanted to point out I think is kind of interesting is security has also been a big focus. And one of the issues is as you start to introduce more low-code and no-code solutions, security becomes more of an issue because you might have developers in a democratized situation where they're all across the company, and so it gets kind of hard to make sure that you have security.

There's quite a few different new tools that Microsoft is introducing through the power platform to enable you to actually jump in and still keep your environment secure. So it's kind of an interesting topic as well as we introduce and continue to talk about introducing low-code and no-code solutions. You know, one thing I wanna point out for all our viewers is Microsoft is running a Cloud Challenge right now. You know, we just talked about the free courses that you can get on A Cloud Guru and Skills. If you jump in and you complete one of these Cloud Challenges from Microsoft you have about a month to do it and you will get a free exam that you can take.

So you could pair that with the free course from A Cloud Guru or Pluralsight, and you'll be all set jumping into your next certification. So just to put this with the practicals, we have the Cloud Happy Challenge and promotion going on through the rest of the year, which includes also the AZ-900 Introduction of Microsoft Azure certification. You can take the training course for the AZ-900 for free, and you can actually go take the certification for free to get your first official Microsoft certification. If you haven't gotten that yet, and now you're officially Azure certified for free, including the training, that's, that's a pretty dang good deal, to be honest. Yeah.

All right, well that just about wraps up what we have for this Azure This Week. I'm sad to see you go, but the good news is it'll be a new Azure This Week, next week that you can hop into. Thanks for being awesome, Gurus. I'll see you next week. See ya.

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