PSDay 2018

I’m sat on the train back from London after PSDay 2018 reflecting on what was a really good conference, the sessions, the speakers, learning about topics that you wouldn’t necessarily have exposure to but most of all the conversations, sharing of ideas and spending time with attendees who are enthused about PowerShell and technology.


Building Better Bricks: Module Design and Development Best Practice - Chris Gardner (@halbarad)

This was a talk that I knew Chris had been doing the rounds with and I checked out the slides on Github but it was still something I wanted to see as someone who creates modules there’s always improvements that can be made e.g. more Pester tests, using CI/CD better documentation or help.

Overall this session fulfilled a lot of what I already know but may not be doing. What it also did was cover how easy the extra layers of functionality actually are when you break it down step by step.

PowerShell and VSTS - The Two Buddies of DevOps - Matteo Emili (@MattVSTS) & PowerShell – A One Trick Unicorn? - Jaap Brasser (@Jaap_Brasser)

I’ve been thinking of looking at VSTS for a while or TFS as a potential candidate for internal use at work. Matteo’s session was delivered well and for someone who has never really used the product like myself, it was a really good session. As Matteo got towards the end of the session which ended up a little in depth for my particular use-case I decided to pop next door and catch the end of Jaap’s talk on Powershell history, speed and gotchas. What I seen was really good and informative with lots of demos and interaction.

I really wanted to see Mathias Jessen’s (@IISResetMe) session on Replicating Directory Changes Efficiently with PowerShell but he unfortunately had to cancel prior to the event.

Rock Solid Scheduled PowerShell Scripts - André Kamman

I’m not a SQL person in the slightest and whilst the topic being covered in André’s session was for automating scheduled scripts on SQL it was far from heavy on the database front.

The premise of the session was around a script which dynamically created commands to run from a YAML configuration file and how to include the extra functionality you’re not afforded with a plain old Scheduled Task. Thoroughly enjoyed the session and the concept wasn’t something I had considered before.

It’s good to talk - ChatOps in a PowerShell world - Stuart Moore (@napalmgram)

I watched Stuart’s session on JEA on YouTube from last year which I thought was excellent so when I seen he was delivering a talk around ChatOps which is something I have been playing with, advocating and coding I wanted to get in on the session to see further possibilities.

Very interesting session on a topic which is only going to get bigger as we seek quicker feedback on the quicker work that we’re doing and interest was definitely piqued by quite a few of the attendees of the sessions who weren’t aware of the possibilities.

Mastering PowerShell Testing with Pester - Mark Wragg (@markwragg)

I have a love hate relationship with Pester and I love the premise and what it does and what you are able to achieve when you are using it. The problem I have had is that coming from a purely Ops background there has been this head paradigm shift where getting my head around the “why” on unit testing has been a massive struggle. I feel I am past that point now and think that it’s actually a fundamental part of releasing code internally and publicly for others to consume.

Overall a brilliant session which covered everything you needed to get started but also touched on deeper areas enough for people who are already seasoned veterans but not so much that the beginners got lost.

Regretting not submitting a session

I had a session in mind to submit with the CFP was released for the conference, knowing that I was going anyway and to continue pushing myself to do more and learn more. However we have a 6 month old baby and they tend not to cater to your spare time very well so I decided against submitting anything. Really wanted to participate with a session whilst I was there and wished I had found the time to submit it in the end.

Now I just need to pluck up the courage to submit for PSConfEU instead, just need to find something to talk about first.

Summary of the event

Hats off to everyone that organised the event and. It was a success and from what I seen and heard, everyone that attended had an amazing time.

And I’ve heard it time and time again that the conferences are amazing for the sessions and the learning experiences but the people in the community and attendees getting together and sharing success stories and ideas is priceless and pays for itself. (The pub may have had something to do with it).

I will be attending next year definitely and can’t wait for PSConfEU 2019, even if I don’t end up speaking.