September’s VBUG event was held on Wednesday 23rd at Newcastle University organised by Andrew Westgarth and Jo Noble, with guest speakers Richard Diver and Dr Dan Oliver from Microsoft giving informative talks about Performance and the Dynmic Desktop Experience.

Alexandria Ball and Sarah Melrose, two of the Microsoft Technet marketing girls also attended the event whilst on thier little road trip from Reading in London.

Part 1: Richard Diver – Performance Monitoring and Analysis

A Premier Field Engineer with 10 years experience implementing and supporting a range of Microsoft technologies, specialising in Active Directory, Server Platform and Virtualisation.

Richard Diver kicked off the event by asking for introductions from each attendee and then he went into his talk about Performance Monitoring and Analysis for proactive and reactive support, server base lining and capacity planning. Richard talked about a free tool that comes in all current versions of Windows called Perfmon. He gave a couple of quick demos and also went into other tools called Resource Monitor (Win 7) Reliability Monitor (Win 7), PSR (Problem Steps Recorder) and SysInternals.

Richard also gave a couple of examples on how to make the experience of XP performance monitoring better, more details can be found in the following Microsoft KB articles:

Part 2: Dr Dan Oliver – The Dynamic Desktop Experience

A Pre Sales Architect within Microsoft UK’s Speciality Technology Unit with some 14 years’ experience of Microsoft-based solutions primarily in the virtualization and systems management fields.

Unfortunatly I don’t have much to blog about regarding Dan’s talk however during his talk he went into:

  • Desktop Optimization pack
  • System Center
  • Bringing down costs, doing more with less
  • Management approval for Group Policies
  • On Demand Apps
  • User State Migration Tool


There were meant to be three speakers for this event however Conrad Sidey (Session: Novell and Lotus Notes – Migrating to Microsoft), couldn’t make it.

Following the VBUG event I visited the Head of Steam opposite Central Station. Soul Technique were playing as part of the Too Far North set of gigs however I managed to arrive just as Ruth and the gang were finishing their last song of the set. Iam pleased I went down when I did though as after Soul Technique had finished another band called Saint and the Cynics played the next slot and I have to say considering this was the first time I’d seen them play, I’d defiantly go elsewhere to see them again. Other bands which played the gig included Peculiar Disco Moves and Black Marcs