by William Vetter
The CUGC XL: Great Plains was a huge success, and it couldn’t have been possible without YOU–the community. From the users to the leaders, the speakers to the vendors, and all of our wonderful guest presentations–your input and contributions are what helped make this such a successful event. Quoting our panel speakers at the end of the CUGC XL: “YOU are shaping the content.”
For those of you who couldn’t attend, here is a quick recap of the 2018 Great Plains CUGC XL Presentations:
The day started off with breakfast, while CTA and Citrix Senior Architect Martin Zugec presented his concepts on “Ransomware Kill Chain.” We learned just how easy it is for people with little to no technical knowledge to obtain custom-built packages meant to hold data ransom. He pushed home how much of an industry this has become and why it is so critically important to have protection measures in place to defend against a fast-growing, well-equipped threat. Personally, it was eye-opening to see some of the methods and how easy it was to use some of these tools to “customize” malware.
We then moved on to Steering Committee VP and CTP Tobias Kreidl–always a great resource in the community on the forums. He shared his journey through affordable thin-clients with the Raspberry Pi platform. Through his presentation, we got a well-informed view into configuration, deployment & management of these devices and how he was able to put these in the hands of end-users for a versatile endpoint. We gained knowledge of optimization through virtual machine configurations that led to great multimedia experiences in the education environment and how these devices could potentially be viable for the budget-constrained organization as well as scale out.
NetScaler is a giant in the networking/loadbalancing landscape. As such a powerful tool for any organization, we were guided through a “Deep Dive” by Citrix Channel Architect Jake Rutski. With the Office 365 ecosystem and identity becoming more prolific, his presentation brought light to some powerful features and configurations that can bring together multiple solutions under unified gateway, and present a great authentication experience for our end-users.
After lunch, we were treated to knowledge on Citrix Cloud with XenApp & XenDesktop with Azure /AWS. Cincinatti CUGC Leader and CTP Eduardo Molina gave demonstrations and insights to think about when starting the conversation about moving various components into popular cloud infrastructures.
This was followed up by a conversation on hardening our deployments, showing us how to avoid “Party-Time123.exe” with Nashville CUGC Leader and CTP Patrick Coble in his topic “How to Survive a Citrix PenTest.” We learned some easy-to-implement configurations to help prevent attackers from escaping the “jails” of currently-launched applications and desktops. All based from real world experience and wisdom.
Our final speaker, Citrix Lead Architect and CTA Dan Feller brought and shared valuable experience with his discussion “Cloud – Ready or Not, Here I Come.” It’s almost inevitable that nearly every organization will ask the question, “Should I move to the Cloud?”
The day ended on a very high note, as our presenters sat down in an open panel and answered many questions from the community, with beers in hand! From the crowd to the food, from the knowledge sharing to the networking, from the vendors (big shout-out to our event sponsors!!) to the end users – it all shows that CUGC Community comes in XL sizes and impact!