KWNPSA Past Events

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Previous meetings of the Non-Profit System Administrators group:

Education

Date
Monday, 13 May 2019 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/255614075/
Location
*** Room 1300 *** -- Conrad Grebel University College, 140 Westmount Rd. N., Waterloo, Ontario Map

Is your Non-Profit an educational organization? As its main function? Or is teaching one of many services you offer? What do you teach? How do you teach it? Do you have classrooms? With computers? What software do you use for teaching in the classroom? Do you have online courses? What online software do you use online? How do you establish your curriculum? How do you perform evaluations? How do you track student progress? Do you work with other educational institutions? Other certifying agencies? What constraints to they impose on your teaching programs?

We'll have a demonstration of Moodle by Marc Paré and perhaps a representative from KW's Desire To Learn. And, of course, we'll have a Round Table discussion on how each of us are managing our organizations education needs.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman



Software Testing

Date
Monday, 8 April 2019 Year from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/260073069/
Location
Room 1300 -- Conrad Grebel University College, 140 Westmount Rd. N., Waterloo, Ontario Map

If you work in software development, how much of your job involves testing? If you're a project manager, do you work closely with the testers to keep an eye on their results and bug reports as a project progresses? If you are a developer, do you do your own unit testing and work with testers on test plan reviews and fix the bugs they find when they do integration and regression testing? If you are a software tester, how do you balance the need to be thorough with the need to deliver on time? How does that affect writing test plans? When a project team has to deal with a lot of changes in the middle of development and testing, how do you cope with updating test plans with limited time? Since you should be considerate when reporting bugs in software, especially when people have worked hard on it, how can you do this tactfully? How do testers work with people like technical writers who use test plans as a reference when writing documentation like user manuals?

Nicholas Collins, a long-time member of KWNSPA and a professional software tester will give us an overview of the deep art of testing software.


--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



Network Security

Date
Monday, 11 March 2019 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/257702185/
Location
*** Room 1300 *** -- Conrad Grebel University College, 140 Westmount Rd. N., Waterloo, Ontario Map


We've talked about Malware and the importance of Keeping Computers Up To Date, and even just about The Things We Should Fear. But what new hazards are unveiled when you connect two or more computers together? When some of those computers aren't on your own network? When malusers are out there trying to break into your network? When you're actually inviting everyone into your network by running servers and services? Should you just outsource everything? Or are there tools available for the Non-Profit SysAdmin to help secure your networks?

We'll talk about the hazards of running a public network, and go over a list of tools and software.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman



Gaming

Date
Monday, 11 February 2019 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/256359263/
Location
*** Room 1300 *** -- Conrad Grebel University College, 140 Westmount Rd. N., Waterloo, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Gaming/Announcement 2019-02-11

Are you a gamer? Wouldn't it be great to play games during work? Are you a game designer? What role does gamification have in Non-Profit organizations? Can gamification make a SysAdmin's life easier? What value do games have in the Non-Profit sector?

Join our round-table discussion on Gaming, and share your views.


--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



GDPR

Date
Monday, 14 January 2019 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/255516932/
Location
*** Room 1300 *** -- Conrad Grebel University College, 140 Westmount Rd. N., Waterloo, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
GDPR/Announcement 2019-01-14

Does your Non-Profit organization collect personal data on people? People in Europe? And what is Personal Data anyway? Does your organization have an office in Europe? Store data in Europe? Process data in Europe? What is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)? Does it apply to your organization? What policies does your organization need to have? What technical measures need to be in place? What's the SysAdmin's role in all this? Could a SysAdmin be liable?

Marc Paré will provide us with an overview of the GDPR, and outline some of the concerns for Non-Profit SysAdmins.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman



Social Night 2018

Date
Monday, 10 December 2018 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/255515953/
Location
Abe Erb Restaurant and Brewery, 151 Charles Street, Kitchener, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Social Night 2018/Announcement 2018-12-10

System Administrators have worked hard all year, with only a few brief hours off. Now it's the Holiday Season again, so KWNPSA will be taking a holiday!

Join us for an evening of good food and fine beverages at the Abe Erb Restaurant and Brewery. Bring your family, friends and relations -- Social Nights (like every other KWNPSA event) is open to everyone.

We'll start this "meeting" an hour earlier than usual, at 6:00pm, to give us more time to enjoy the evening.

--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré


  • No meeting notes for social nights...

Tech Wobblies

Date
Monday, 12 November 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/253998238/
Location
Room 1301 -- Conrad Grebel University College, 140 Westmount Rd. N., Waterloo, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Tech Wobblies/Announcement 2018-11-12

Is automation taking over Systems Administration? Are highly skilled SysAdmin jobs (and their highly skilled SysAdmins) becoming obsolete? What is to become of the Non-Profit SysAdmin? Are we all going to become Mechanical Turks? Or should tech workers become Wobblies? Who are the Wobblies? Is the tech industry ready for collective action?

We're joined by special guests Sean Howard and "Wobbly Sunny" at our round table to discuss the state of the tech industry, the working conditions for tech workers, and what can be done about it.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman


Tech Wobblies/Meeting Notes 2018-11-12


Training

Date
Monday, 15 October 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/253049800/
Location
The Parlour in First United Church, 16 William Street West, Waterloo, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Training/Announcement 2018-10-15


How complex is your Non-Profit organization? Does your newly hired staff need training on your policies and procedures? On your products and services? On your software and hardware? What happens when you change procedures, get new products, update your software? Does your existing staff need training? How do you supply the training? On the job? In the classroom? Online learning courses? And how do you manage the training administration? Keep track of results? Determine who is eligible for additional training?

At this months' round table discussion let's talk about our experiences in providing training to staff, or receiving training to be better SysAdmins. How can the Non-Profit SysAdmin help deliver and track training for our organizations' training requirements?

In a future session we'll discuss providing education to the clients of our organizations; this month let's focus on internal training.

--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



Purchasing and Procurement

Date
Monday, 17 September 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/253047725/
Location
4th Floor, 121 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map
  • Search for Danielle McCormack on the iPad through Envoy
Event Announcement
Purchasing and Procurement/Announcement 2018-09-17

Does your organization buy things? Do you go to the local store? Or do you issue Requests for Information, Quotes, or Proposals? How do you evaluate those RFIs, RFQs, and RFPs? How do you find suppliers? Contractors? Vendors? Does your organization have minimum standards for vendors? How can you ensure vendors making bids meet these standards? Isn't there some software that can help with all this?

Yes! Local company Bonfire creates purchasing and Procurement software. Special guests Danielle McCormack and Ethan Driedger will will give us an overview of what a Non-Profit organization should look for in purchasing and procurement software, and will give us a demonstration of the Bonfire software.


--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman



Scripting Languages

Date
Monday, 20 August 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm iCal
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/253044847/
Location
Room 1301 -- Conrad Grebel University College, 140 Westmount Rd. N., Waterloo, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Scripting Languages/Announcement 2018-08-20

Do you need to do the same thing again and again? Have you automated those repetitive tasks? What software tools do you use? Keyboard macros? Programmable keyboard macros? A scripting language? Which scripting language? What makes a scripting language different from a programming language? Is a scripting language Turing-complete? Can't you just do everything in PowerShell or Bash?

Let's talk about what can be solved with scripting languages, and what can't. Bring your laptop to give a demonstration of your favourite scripting languages, and maybe we can help solve some of your most annoying repetitive problems.


--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



SysAdminDay Dinner 2018

Date
Friday, 27 July 2018 from 6:00pm to 10:00pm iCal
Location
Abe Erb Restaurant at The Tannery, 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map

Note that this is not a regular KWNPSA meeting!


Every year, the last Friday in July is System Administrator Appreciation Day, or SysAdminDay for short (we SysAdmins are efficient — why waste syllables?)

System Administrators manage the networks, configure the servers, and make backups for their users. On System Administrator Appreciation Day those users have the opportunity to appreciate their System Administrators by gifting them with chocolate cake and ice cream. But just in case that doesn’t happen, the SysAdmins in Waterloo Region take themselves and their spouses, friends and relations to dinner. Remember how SysAdmins make backups?

Join us at the Abe Erb Brew Pub and Restaurant again this year on Friday, 27 July 2018 from 6:00pm to 10:00pm, meet with other SysAdmins, share funny PEBKAC stories, and have some dinner and a beverage.

You don’t have to be a SysAdmin to come to the SysAdminDay Dinner — Everybody’s welcome! Non-Profit SysAdmins, For-Profit SysAdmins, SysAdmins-In-Training, Retired SysAdmins, even people just curious to know what an array of SysAdmins looks like. Bring your friends and family!

What: System Administrator Appreciation Day Dinner
When: Friday, 27 July 2018 starting at 6:00pm iCal
Where: Abe Erb Restaurant at The Tannery Location: 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map
RSVP: http://bob.jonkman.ca/blogs/2018/07/06/sysadminday-dinner-2018-at-abe-erb-in-kitchener/

Leave a comment on my blog to RSVP if you’re coming, so I can make a reservation at Abe Erb:


See you Friday!

--Bob.


Web Stores and Shopping Carts

Date
Monday 16 July 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/250380630/
Location
Room 1301 -- Conrad Grebel University College, 140 Westmount Rd. N., Waterloo, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Web Stores and Shopping Carts/Announcement 2018-07-16

Does your NonProfit organization sell things? Does it provide paid services? Do you need a web presence for your sales? Will you need a separate server for your web store? Or can you add a shopping cart to your existing web site? Or is it better to outsource all online commerce?

Meet our guest speaker Sam Nabi, developer of Shopkit, and let's discuss what a System Administrator needs to join a NonProfit organization to the world of web commerce.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman


Accessibility

Date
Monday, 11 June 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/245691598/
Location
The Chapel in First United Church, 16 William Street West, Waterloo, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Accessibility/Announcement 2018-06-11

Is your Non-Profit organization accessible? Can your website contents be read by a text-to-speech synthesizer? By a Braille reader? With a screen magnifier? Without Javascript? In a text-only browser? Does it pass the WAVE Web Accessibility Tool validator? Does your podcast have a text transcription? Is your video described? What other accessibility tools does a SysAdmin need to manage? What legal requirements for accessibility are there?

Join other Kitcher-Waterloo Non-Profit System Administrators for examples, demonstrations and our usual round-table discussion, and perhaps a guest presentation! Everyone is welcome, you don't have to be a Non-Profit System Administrator to attend.

--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



Productivity Tools

Date
Monday, 14 May 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/245661086/
Location
The Parlour in First United Church, 16 William Street West, Waterloo, Ontario Map


How do SysAdmins get any work done? What software makes your life better? Which tools do you use every day? How do you use common utilities? What custom configurations do you have? Is there an application specific to your Non-Profit organization? Have you written a script to make work easier? What's your favourite productivity tool?

In concert with other NetSquared groups across the globe we're going to share tips and tricks with each other. Bring your laptop, notebook, tablet or phone, and take five minutes to show and tell us one thing -- anything at all!

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman



Dark Web, Hidden Services

Date
Monday, 16 April 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/245564977/
Location
Upper Board Room in First United Church, 16 William Street West, Waterloo, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Dark Web, Hidden Services/Announcement 2018-04-16

What is the Dark Web? Is it full of bad guys? What are Hidden Services? Aren't those illegal? Why would a Non-Profit organization want to use the Dark Web? Why should a Non-Profit organization make their online services available as Hidden Services? What software can we use to access the Dark Web and create Hidden Services?

We'll have a demonstration of Tor and I2P, and have a round-table discussion of the benefits and pitfalls of using them.

--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



File Formats

Date
Monday, 12 March 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/244120869/
Location
Upper Board Room in First United Church, 16 William Street West, Waterloo, Ontario Map

What file formats do your documents, images, spreadsheets use? Can you exchange your files with people using Macs? Linux? VMS? Will your documents survive an upgrade of your application software? Can you switch to another word processor? Image editor? Spreadsheet app? Can you still read the files from backups created years ago with different software? Can you choose the file format your application uses?

In the month of Document Freedom Day we'll look at the importance of open, well-known file formats, and compare it to closed, proprietary formats that are so prevalent today.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman



Corporate Surveillance

Date
Monday, 12 February 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/245128116
Location
First United Church, 16 William St West, Waterloo, ON Map

How do we keep our workplaces secure? Does your organization use cameras? Does it filter web content? Check for document exfiltration? Inspect e-mail? Monitor keystrokes? Is this sneaky, underhanded spying, or merely good business practice? What are the ethics of corporate surveillance for System Administrators?

Join Kitchener-Waterloo Non-Profit System Administrators at our monthly round table meeting for a technical, philosophical and moral discussion.

--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



Fundraising

Date
Monday, 15 January 2018 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/245127963
Location
First United Church, 16 William St West, Waterloo, ON Map

From our discussion on Monetization we learned about software for fundraising. Does your organization need to raise funds? What tools are available? Desktop applications? Cloud solutions? Outsourced? Does your fundraising software integrate with your other financial software? Will it provide reminders? Follow-ups? Is it automated?

Join Non-Profit System Administrators from Waterloo Region for the first round table discussion of the new year. Everyone is welcome, you don't need to be a professional SysAdmin to join us.


--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman




Social Night

Date
Monday, 18 December 2017 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/245086883
Location
Abe Erb Restaurant and Brewery, 151 Charles Street, Kitchener, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Social Night/Announcement 2017-12-18

Systems Administrators are a social bunch! December is in the middle of the Holiday Season, so let's get together and socialize. I'm sure we'll talk tech, but the purpose of the evening is to eat satisfyingly good food, drink refreshingly good beverages, and have an amazingly good time.

Bring your spouses, partners, POSSLQs, friends, co-workers, and anyone else you'd like to socialize with! To maximize our enjoyment, note that we're starting an hour earlier at 6:00pm.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman


  • There are no Meeting Notes for a social event!
    • But there is a picture!
Steve Izma, Marc Paré, Michael, Nicholas, Arash, Parth, Bob Jonkman
Sorry we missed those who arrived later!

Document Storage

Date
Monday, 13 November 2017 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/243067519/
Location
Queen Street Commons Cafe, 43 Queen Street South, Kitchener, Ontario Map
Event Announcement
Document Storage/Announcement 2017-11-13

How do you store your documents? Where do you store them? What software creates your documents? What software stores it? What software retrieves it? What about document indexing and searching? How do you deal with non-textual documents? What document file format do you use? Is parchment and goose-quill still best?

This month there'll be a shooting match between the Well-Known Format SysAdmins and the OpenStandards SysAdmins. But it'll be a polite shooting match at our round table discussion, with SysAdmins relating their own practices, learning new ones, and telling tall tales.

--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



Markup Languages and Note Taking

Date
Monday, 16 October 2017 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
(Thanksgiving! Scheduled for the 2nd non-holiday Monday of the month)
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/243068343/
Location
Communitech Jelly Bean Room 1st Floor, 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map

How do you take notes? What software exists for note taking? What markup language is best for taking notes? Are your notes available on your phone or tablet? How do you synchronize them? How do you publish your notes online? When is it better to use a Note Taking application rather than a proper Word Processor?

This month we invite all the devotees of MarkDown, WikiText, MoinMoin, YAML, and LaTeX to contribute to the discussion at our round table.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman



Project Management

Date
Monday, 18 September 2017 from 7:00pm to 8:30pm
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/243066154/
Location
Communitech Jelly Bean Room 1st Floor, 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map

What is Project Management? How do SysAdmins provide support to Project Managers? What kind of projects directly affect SysAdmins? Do Non-Profit SysAdmins manage projects? What tools are available for project management? What server-based software exists for project management? Who provides outsourced project management? What standards exist for project management? What certification?

Let's bring together SysAdmins and Project Managers to discuss the state of the art. As always, we'll have round table discussion to ask questions, provide expertise, and share stories of past experiences.

--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



Monetization

Date
Monday, 21 August 2017 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/241820045/ iCal
Location
Communitech Jelly Bean Room 1st Floor, 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map

How can a Non-Profit organization raise money from their services? Can a Not-For-Profit organization make a profit? Why do some NonProfit organizations have separate corporate entities for fundraising and their core business? How do NonProfit SysAdmins manage crowdfunding? How does monetization affect NonProfit status? How does monetization affect legislation concerning mailing lists? What does the NonProfit SysAdmin need to know to enable monetization on the Internet? What software exists to enable monetization?

Join us to discuss these and other ideas for monetization.

--Marc Paré & Bob Jonkman



Mail Management

Date
Monday, 17 July 2017 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/240752492/
Location
Communitech Jelly Bean Room 1st Floor, 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map

Is e-mail obsolete? If not, how can we provide e-mail services to our Non-profit organizations? Do we treat internal, staff e-mail differently from our clients' e-mail? How do we communicate with large groups? What mailing list services are there? Do we just give all our e-mail to Google and Microsoft? Maybe we can use the e-mail from our ISPs? They advertise "unlimited mailboxes", right? Do we run our own e-mail servers? But then, how do we deal with spam, blocklists, and e-mail providers that don't play fair? And, is it "E-mail" or "Email"?

KWNPSA is in the process of setting up our own e-mailing lists, and we have plenty of e-mail system administrators in the group. Looking forward to a lively Round Table discussion!

--Bob Jonkman & Marc Paré



Malware

Date
Monday, 12 June 2017 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/239940239/
Location
Communitech Jelly Bean Room 1st Floor, 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map

Breaking News: Dozens of countries affected by ransomware cyberattack (CBC News, 12 May 2017)

Are you protected from malware? On your desktop computers? On your servers? Does your staff have malware protection at home? Is anti-virus software enough? What's "ransomware"? What's the difference between a virus, a trojan, and a phishing attack? Does it matter? How do you protect yourself from malware? What's the best way to react to a malware outbreak? How do you recover from a malware attack?

We'll share our experiences in a round table discussion, and perhaps have a guest from the industry to provide some of the answers.

--Marc Paré and Bob Jonkman



Offsite Hosting

Date
Monday, 8 May 2017
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/237779027/
Location
Communitech Jelly Bean Room 1st Floor, 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map

Where are your servers? Are you self-hosting? Have you thought about professional hosting? What services does a professional hosting service offer? Do you need shared hosting? Do you need a VPS? What's a VPS? What's a colocation site? How much will all this cost?

Come share your experiences with self-hosting, shared hosting, and VPSes. Bob and Marc have the questions, and special guest Mark Steffen from indieServe Networks will have the answers.

See you at the meeting!

--Bob Jonkman and Marc Paré



Blockchains

Date
Monday, 10 April 2017
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/237778947/
Location
Communitech Jelly Bean Room 1st Floor, 151 Charles Street West, Kitchener, Ontario Map

What's a blockchain? Is this all about math? How do I make Bitcoin payments? How can I receive Bitcoin donations on my Website? Are there other blockchain currencies? What services exist for blockchain currency exchange? Is blockchain technology good for more than just Bitcoin? What blockchain tools exist for Non-Profit organizations?

Marc and Bob ask the questions, and special guest Kris Stinson will be on hand to provide the answers!

See you at the meeting!

--Marc and Bob.



Branding

Date
Monday, 13 March 2017
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/237778855/
Location
Steve Izma's house, 35 Locust Street, Kitchener, Ontario Map

What's your brand? Do you have a brand? How do you choose a brand? Is branding important for NonProfit organizations? What is the value of a good brand? What is the cost of a bad brand? Have you ever changed your branding? How much work was it for the SysAdmins? Did you have re-do the Web site? The e-mail addresses? Business cards? Letterhead? What legal considerations are there for choosing a brand?

Bob and Marc have the questions, together all of us have the answers.

See you at the meeting!

--Bob and Marc



Social Media

Date
Monday, 13 February 2017
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/237362708/
Location
Queen Street Commons Cafe, 43 Queen Street South, Kitchener.
Across the street from our previous meeting place. Map

How can a Nonprofit organization make use of Social Media? Should a Nonprofit organization even use Social Media? What Social Media platform do you use? What sorts of things do you put on Social Media? Who puts it there? A team of SMEs? One person? Is this a full-time job? How much time does it take to maintain Social Media accounts for a Nonprofit organization? What will you do when your Social Media platform disappears? Or deletes your content? Or delivers your content to only a small set of viewers?



Estimating Time and Resources

Date
Monday, 16 January 2017
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/234260371/
Meeting Notes
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/messages/boards/thread/50529155

In IT we are often asked to estimate the time and resources assorted tasks will take. Often these time/cost estimates are tied to funding, grants, and resource allocations. Unfortunately, many of us struggle at coming up with estimates more accurate than "it will take longer than expected". What are some strategies and best practices we can use to come up with better estimates? Under what circumstances does estimating things become easier? Harder? Under what conditions should we spend a lot of effort making estimates, and under what circumstances should we not?

When have you had good experiences making estimates? When have you struggled?

As always, bring your experiences and questions. Also, please spread the word about this meetup so that more people who do nonprofit systems administration will become aware of it.


Documenting Things

Date
Monday, 12 December 2016
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/234260323/

Much of our September meeting revolved around documentation. How do we ensure it gets written when there are so many other priorities? How is it maintained so it does not go out of date? How do we index it so that it is easy to find the information we need when we need it? What tools have we found most helpful in creating and maintaining documentation? What things are important to document, and what things can be skipped? As always, bring your experiences and questions.



Regulatory Compliance

Date
Monday, 14 November 2016
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/233388765/

Many non-profit organizations are involved in government-regulated services such as health care, employment acquisition and training. Other activities require adherence to other laws, such as building codes. How do you keep track of all the regulations that you need to follow? How do you store compliance documents such as sign-offs, NDAs, and contacts? What do you use for secure document storage and transmission? How do the SysAdmins get along with the Lawyers? When is encryption required? What do you encrypt and when?


Promoting Open Source

Date
Monday, 17 October 2016
Event Announcement
https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/233388573/

Many of us use Free and Open Source software (FLOSS) in our daily lives. But promoting the use of FLOSS within our organizations can be a challenge. What FLOSS does your organization use? How did this come to pass? What kinds of FLOSS is amenable to adoption by non-profit organizations? What is more challenging? What are some of the advantages/selling points you have found successful in promoting FLOSS in your organization? What have been been some of the disadvantages/challenges you have faced in promoting FLOSS?

As always, bring your experiences and questions. Let's use this group to support each other!

P.S. Did you know we post our meeting minutes? You can find them on the Meetup site here: https://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/messages/boards/



Smooth Succession

Date
Monday, 19 September 2016
Event Announcement
http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/232556568/

Sooner or later, people move on. Sometimes they leave for greener pastures and sometimes they just leave. Sysadmins tend to have a lot knowledge about the systems they work with, and often their knowledge is in their heads and their heads alone. As responsible sysadmins, how do we transition out of our jobs without our organizations collapsing behind us? How do our replacements learn the institutional knowledge they need to keep things running? What best practices can we implement to document and share knowledge so that others know what is going on when we are hit by buses?



Financial Software

Date
Monday, 15 August 2016
Event Announcement
http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/232234165/

What kinds of financial software are appropriate for nonprofits? What does your organization use? What work is involved in supporting it?



The CLOUD

Monday, 11 July 2016
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/228739922/

Every single meeting we mention "The Cloud" but it has never been a formal topic of discussion.

What do you trust on the cloud?

What do you not trust? Why?

How how the cloud made your life easier? How has it made it harder?

What criteria do you use when deciding to use cloud services?

Are there feasible alternatives to the cloud? What are their plusses and minuses?

Are IT admins who don't like the cloud dinosaurs who will be unemployed dinosaurs within a few months or years?



External Services and Consultants

Monday, 13 June 2016
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/226669505/

What sources do you provide in-house? What do you outsource and why? Office 365? Web services? Email? Phone services? Other things? What are the pros and cons of hosting these services internally versus getting somebody else to do them? What factors do you consider when outsourcing a service?

How do you deal with people providing external IT services to your organization? How do you interact with consultants and other external service providers effectively?



Acquiring Hardware

Monday, 9 May 2016
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/226669425/

Nonprofits tend to have different budget constraints than other organizations, and often different requirements. Let's talk about them.

What kinds of constraints do you deal with? What kinds of hardware do you purchase? How have those purchases changed with new technology (eg the Cloud?) Do you get equipment new? Used? Donated? What factors do you consider when getting new hardware? How long does hardware get used in your organization?



What should we celebrate?

Monday, 11 April 2016
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/226669161/

As a counterpoint to last month's terrifying meeting, let's discuss the ways that system administration has gotten easier and more effective. We can share tools and techniques that have made a big difference in our systems administration practices, and talk about our glorious utopian future.



What should we fear?

Date
Monday, 14 March 2016 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Meetup Event
http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/226669101/
Location
The Working Centre, 58 Queen Street South, Kitchener, Ontario Map

Ransomware. Spear-phishing. Botnets. Dirty USB attacks. Protecting our users and data has always been scary, but things appear to be getting scarier. What threats do you worry about the most? How have you changed your approach to deal with them? What threats can we do something about? How do we deal with the threats that are beyond our control?

As always, we will be sharing experiences and stories.



Organizational Databases

Monday, 8 February 2016
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/226669340/

Many organizations have internal data that they want to track. What tools do we use to store this data? Hateful Microsoft Access? MySQL? A web framework like Django? Complicated, brittle spreadsheets? Some cloud solution?

How do we migrate data from insane database systems to better ones? How do we back them up? What are some best practices to dealing with internal databases? What kinds of databases have you dealt with, and what approaches have worked for you?



Disaster Recovery

Monday, 11 January 2016
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/226669035/

Sometimes, disaster strikes: lightning, fire, floods or other traumas can wipe out our IT infrastructure. How can we protect against losing everything?

Have you put together disaster recovery plans? Have you conducted disaster recovery exercises? What things are most important to consider? What things are trickiest? What best practices have you learned? Bring your experiences and stories.



Collaborative Editing Tools

Date
Monday, 14 December 2015
Event Announcement
http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/223909896/

How do people work together? How do you deal with privacy concerns? What tools work and what have problems?

  • OneNote
  • Etherpad and friends
  • WebEx



Out of band management

Monday, 9 November 2015
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/223909851/

how do you manage servers when the servers are not directly accessible?



Data migration

Monday, 19 October 2015
Note: October 12 is Thanksgiving, so we are deferring the meeting for a week.
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/223909871/
  • Migrating mail servers (different versions of Exchange, GroupWise -> Exchange)
  • Migrating Linux to Windows and vice versa
  • Migrating MS Office to LibreOffice



Backups

Monday, 21 September 2015
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/223908420/
  • How do you test your backups? Have you worked on disaster recovery?
  • How do you synchronize backups across locations?



All About VoIP

Date
Monday, 17 August 2015
Event Announcement
http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/223550824/

What combination of VoIP and PSTN lines do you use? What problems does VoIP solve for you? What problems does it create?



Keeping remote systems connected

Monday, 13 July 2015
Event Announcement: http://www.meetup.com/NetSquared-Kitchener-Waterloo/events/223189124/
  • This month we will be talking about how to deal with multiple locations within an organization. We will be discussing things like file sharing setups for more than one location, communications between locations, different router types for VPN and such, etc....
  • Multiple locations may mean more than one office building, or other situations like employees who work from home or other remote locations.



Keeping Computers Up To Date

Date
Monday, 8 June 2015 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Event Announcement 
Keeping Computers Up To Date/Meeting Announcement 2015-06-08
Location
The Working Centre, 58 Queen Street South, Kitchener Map

Updating Desktops

You thought it would never happen again, but we are in fact holding a second Nonprofit Sysadmin meeting this Monday, June 8. As we did introductions last month I tried to collect some themes as future discussion topics. Somewhat arbitrarily, I propose that Monday's meeting be about keeping systems (specifically desktops) up to date:

  • What tools do you use to keep desktops up to date? (Windows or Linux, or other)
  • What tools do you use for third party updates (Flash? Adobe Reader? Hateful Java?)
  • What tools do you use to monitor and ensure that updates are happening?
  • How do you prevent desktops from filling up with spyware and other nonsense?
  • For Windows people: what are you doing about the Windows 10 upgrade offer?

We will meet starting at 7pm at the main Working Centre building, 58 Queen Street South. Bill says that there is free parking kitty-corner from the Working Centre, on the other side of Charles.

If you know of interested sysadmins who might be interested in our conversation, please invite them to the meeting.

- Paul



Introductions And Planning

Date
Monday, 11 May 2015 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Event Announcement
Introductions And Planning/Meeting Announcement 2015-05-11
Location
The Working Centre, 58 Queen Street South, Kitchener Map

During the first meeting I figure we can introduce ourselves, work out the logistics, and introduce some of the things that are challenging us in our sysadmin work.

- Paul


  • There are no meeting notes for this session.

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