Archive for November, 2014

NonStop Technical Boot Camp 2014 – The (New, More Secure!!) Way To San Jose

Monday, November 24th, 2014

We’ve just returned from this years’ NonStop Technical Boot Camp – what a whirlwind!  Held for the first time at the Dolce Hayes Mansion, in the suburbs of San Jose, there was a record number of attendees, and it was a vibrant and energetic conference.  We had a busy time, with lots of great customer interaction, both on the tradeshow floor and during the evening events.  The continued and increasing focus on security was clearly  evident, from the number of security vendors exhibiting, to the large number of sessions (both customer and vendor) discussing security, data breaches and various challenges related to those issues.  Speaking of, XYPRO had folks involved in 9 (!) different sessions during the 3 ½ days:

During the pre-conference sessions on Sunday, attendees got to experience a deep dive on a variety of different topics. Rob Lesan and Terence Spies (from Voltage) covered strategies for security in today’s payments landscapes, where breaches are becoming so commonplace. The workshop spanned magnetic stripe technology right through to Apple Pay, and covered cryptographic developments and tokenization evolution, and was a valuable session for anyone wanting to learn more about these important technologies. They also had a case study on implementing tokenization in a real-world payments application, based on our recent experiences.

Then after lunch, Lee Evans, recently from Wells Fargo, and the newest addition to the XYPRO team, took an in-depth look at XYGATE Object Security, and how the powerful combination of XOS and the two authorization SEEPs help to improve NonStop security through a range of advanced options that apply across the entire NonStop environment. Lee’s very recent customer experience with XOS gives him a unique and very relatable perspective on this topic, and it was well received.

For our final pre-conference session of the day, Rob Lesan (who had a very busy conference pulling double duty as the Connect Vice President!) covered our partner database solution from Merlon, SQLXpress. Attendees learned how our many customers deploy SQLXpress to comprehensively secure, and greatly simplify the management of, their SQL/MP and SQL/MX databases.

On to the conference proper…with HP Distinguished Technologist Wendy Bartlett, and comForte’s Thomas Burg, we presented at the security-focused opening general session on Tuesday. We covered the XYPRO security solutions that are included with the NonStop Security Bundle, letting customers know the best ways to get their systems secured using these “built-in” tools.

The first of several joint presentations with Mark Bower from Voltage covered data-centric security and its importance in NonStop ecosystems.  During this session on Monday morning attendees heard a summary of data-centric security, its applicability to payments applications and other typical NonStop deployments, and how a data-centric approach can prevent gaps in data protection across the enterprise. Then on Wednesday we took a closer look at Voltage SecureData and XYGATE Data Protection (XDP), two products that work together on NonStop to implement data-centric security with no application changes required.  We got great feedback on both sessions, with the data-centric security approach resonating well with audiences.

On Monday afternoon, Rob Lesan’s superior presentation skills and direct experience were exploited to explain the database management services we provide, and the database tools that we utilize to provide those services, including Discover, MARS and SQLXpress.

On Tuesday morning, we took a slightly different approach to the typical vendor track presentation.  In a follow-up to a popular ten-part blog series that Ken Scudder has published over the last couple of months, “HP NonStop Security: The Top 10 Things You Need to Know” we covered the highest priority things NonStop users should do to better protect their NonStop servers. We surprised the audience by having 10 different members of our sales and professional services team present, with each of them giving their own distinct spin on their specific topic.  A highlight was our AP Sales Manager, Feng Lin, greeting the audience in at least 6 different languages from his region!

On Wednesday audiences were treated to our Chief Architect, Scoff Uroff, helping to present a customer-centric view of our two products that are included in the HP NonStop security bundle on all new NonStop servers: XYGATE Merged Audit and XYGATE User Authentication. This session, based on input from TELUS in Canada, showed how they use these solutions to get a handle on their audit data and simplify their user authentication—conveniently with products bundled with the NonStop OS!

All this, along with early starts on the trade show floor, combined with evening festivities, meant that we had 18 very tired XYPRO conference attendees by the time the show closed around midday on Wednesday.  I suspect we weren’t the only ones!  Still, a fantastic conference, and we’re already looking forward to doing it all again next year, wherever in San Jose it happens to be.