ALM Rocks!

ALM Rocks!

Author: Mickey Gousset

Kids : 10 Tips for Preparing for Your Newborn Photo Shoot

When you are a new parent, you want to get all the moments of your small one to be documented, especially the initial days in the hospital and the first few months when your baby is rapidly growing and learning a new thing every day. While getting your baby photographed isn’t that huge a task but special care needs to be taken when you are preparing your newborn for a photo shoot. They are really fragile and need to be handled with utmost care and precision.

Here are a few tips to turn the photo shoot of your newborn into a success:

  1. Get everyone involved

One of the best tips for a successful photo shoot is to determine who all will be participating in it and whether it would only be a newborn photo shoot or a full blown family photo shoot. You can include other family members in the photo shoot as well so that later when your baby sees these photos, they are excited to see others around too. You can also use many products, which can make photoshoot more beautiful like a cheap high chair, some toys etc.

  1. Discuss it with your partner

You need to have a proper discussion with your partner if this is something you both want and what are your expectations and desires from the same. You both might have a few different ideas so it is better to discuss and arrive on the same page.

  1. Get the siblings in the shoot

You can also get your other kid involved so that they feel happy to be included and your baby can see how his/her elder sibling was when they were born.

  1. Decide a budget

You would need to decide on various things like photography style, set up, etc. for which you would need to fix a budget for yourself. You would have to keep your finances in mind before you make any rash decision.

  1. Pick the baby’s outfit

One of the most important jobs in a photo shoot is to choose a nice baby outfit and pack it in your hospital bag. You don’t need anything too dressy, plain and simple works too.

  1. Get some accessories

You can also get a few things to adorn your baby with like a blanket, a few toys, etc. to give a more authentic and classy touch to the photo shoot.

  1. Dress nicely

Don’t forget to get a nice outfit for yourself for the photo shoot! You don’t have to choose something extravagant, a simple black tee and maternity pants will work too.

  1. Pack a little makeup

You can also put a little makeup in your bag to make yourself presentable for the photo shoot. A little blush and mascara go a long way and will make you look fresh and clean.

  1. Choose outfit for others in the shoot

Once you and your baby are all set, you would need to make sure that other family members are dressed properly for the photo shoot too. This photo is going to stay forever with you so don’t compromise on anything. You can find various child and parenting related products at newmomvintage.

  1. Relax and enjoy

One of the main things is to enjoy the photo shoot and relax. Don’t stress out too much and just enjoy the moment.

Microsoft–Scaling Agile Across the Enterprise

WaterFall Model

A couple of weeks ago, Microsoft released a set of videos, Scaling Agile Across the Enterprise, where the Developer Division talks about how they moved from a more waterfall process to a more agile process.

I found the videos interesting and enlightening for a variety of reasons. Microsoft used to be a completely waterfall model company.  But Agile made its way into the company like it does in most other organizations, slowly through small teams, and began to spread through the organization.  And now all of DevDiv is using it, and being extremely successful with it (case in point, VSO is updating every three weeks).

I also found the videos rather motivating. Whether you are a small company or a large company, implementing some sort of Agile methodology is going to return results for you.

Here at Infront, we are starting to use some Agile methodologies within our work. I’m finding that these methodologies can apply to both IT Pro work as well as Development, and we are applying them to both.  I’m specifically going to be exploring Kanban over the next few months, as a way to track work on a couple of internal projects.  And of course, I’ll be using Team Foundation Server 2013 to do this.


Channel 9 Edge Show–DevOps Panel

Channel 9 Edge Show – DevOps Panel – Tech Ed North America 2014

Channel 9 Edge Show – DevOps Panel – Tech Ed North America 2014

During Tech Ed 2014 North America,I had the opportunity to be part of a panel of experts on the Channel 9 show Edge, talking about DevOps.  In the 32 minute conversation, we cover the following questions:

  • [02:08] When have you seen Development, Operations, and the Business people work well or not together?
  • [05:37] Are you seeing companies bring in new “DevOps” titled employees or are they hiring from existing employees?  Why?
  • [08:05] How does the Microsoft Azure team utilize DevOps principles in regards to people?
  • [11:52] How are you seeing infrastructure as code making an impact with DevOps?
  • [14:30] Where do you see process helping or hindering with DevOps?
  • [18:20] Where do you see developers desiring for operations to help them out?
  • [20:05] What’s the future vision of the new Microsoft Azure portal to integrate Development with Operations in the overall application lifecycle?
  • [21:28] Where do you see PowerShell DSC play a part with DevOps?
  • [23:00] What Open Source development tools do you (Richard) find useful which interoperate with Microsoft products and what would you like to see which doesn’t exist yet?
  • [24:35] Where do you (Mickey) find customers using System Center tools with DevOps?
  • [25:33] Why did Microsoft create the new Microsoft Azure portal?
  • [27:44] How is Microsoft embracing open source with the new Microsoft Azure portal?
  • [25:08] Why don’t we see Docker being supported on Windows?
  • [30:44] Any general tips to companies who want to get started with DevOps?

#MickeysWorldWideTour–Day 2

#MickeysWorldWideTour–Day 2

So not much sleep on Sunday night, even though I was jetlagged.  I attribute that to nerves and anticipation.

I must say the client here is taking very good care of us. They have a driver that picks us up every day from the hotel, as well as brings us back.  Not having to worry about transportation take a major load off the mind.

We showed up at the client office around noon, and immediately went to lunch! Most of the staff here are working afternoon and evening shifts, to help support other offices around the world. So our normal work day this week will be from 12 pm – 10 pm, which definitely throws off the internal clock some.

Lunch was a restaurant with some traditional Filipino cuisine. I tried ox tongue!  It was rather good. And I had a great dessert that was purple, that I can’t remember the name of.

After lunch we toured the client offices, where we met everyone that worked there, about 200 people. Again, everyone here in Manila is incredibly nice and polite. I’ve also picked up a couple of words in Filipino: “How Are You”, which sounds a lot like how you would say it in Spanish, and “Thank You”, which is “salama”.  I’ve been saying “salama” a lot.

The rest of the day was spent in some process meetings, and then we started doing some Service Manager customizations.  About 9 PM we stopped and went to dinner at a steak restaurant, that wouldn’t have been out of place in Tupelo.

#MickeysWorldWideTour–Day 1

I’m on my world-wide adventure this week.  Work has taken me to Manila, Philippines for the next 7 days.  This trip marks the farthest I’ve traveled from home yet, as well as the longest transit time (30+ hours) of a trip that I’ve taken.

My adventure started Friday morning, with the first leg of my trip being a jump from Memphis, TN to Detroit, Michigan. No major surprises on that leg.  I ended up with a five hour layover in Detroit, so I decided to take advantage of the Delta SkyClub.  This was my first time in a SkyClub, and I must say it was a nice one.  Yes, they have free snacks and drinks, but what really worked for me this time were the private dedicated work areas.  During my layover I spent most of my time helping some consultants with a problem, and the private internet access as well as workspace made that a much better experience than it would have been sitting at a chair in the food court of the airport.


The next leg of my journey was from Detroit, MI to Nagoya, Japan.  That’s right, Japan! This flight was about 13 hours, and the plane was huge.  It was nice though, and was probably the most comfortable flight I have taken in a long time, with some very good food as well.  I tried to sleep on the plane, but never really achieved anything other than a light doze. I did catch up on some movies that I have missed (Thor 2 being one of them).

JapanAdIn Nogayo, I only had a two hour layover.  But it was still more than enough time to completely impress me with how polite Japenese society is.  Case in point: I made a purchase while in the airport, and the person who rang me up handed my credit card back to me with both hands.  Small things like that have a huge impact, because they show respect.  And I found everyone there very helpful and friendly.  Here’s to hoping my travel’s bring me back there again one day.

Final leg of the trip was from Nagoya, Japan, to Manila, Philippines, which was about a 4 hour flight.  Now, I’ve already crossed the international date line at this point, so I’ve lost a day. We land in Manila a little after midnight, but you would never know it from the airport.  It was packed.  And finally, I made it to my hotel about 1 AM local time.  Total travel from from when I got up in Tupelo, MS to when I got to my hotel in Manila, almost 30 hours.

So today marks my first full day in Manila. It’s Sunday, so official work doesn’t start till tomorrow.  In attempt to reset my internal clock (which is 14 hours behind local time), I dragged myself out of bed this morning after only about 6 hours sleep.  Today has been spent exercising (the hotel has a wonderful fitness center), answering some emails, and wondering around the hotel and taking in a little local culture. Everyone I’ve run into has been extremely friendly and helpful.

I must say though, that while I’m looking forward to this week, I’m missing my family already.  It is very strange being on completely separate sleep cycles then they are, and it makes telephone communication a little difficult.

So there you go, my first update on what I’m calling on Twitter #MickeysWorldWideTour (though I guess it is really only a 1/2 WorldWideTour).

From Code to Release: DevOps for Developers

DevOps for Developers

I’m thrilled to have been selected to deliver a pre-conference session at TechEd 2014 in Houston.  My good friend Brian Randell and I will be talking about “From Code To Release: DevOps for Developers”. Click the link above to read the abstract.

I’ve been lucky enough to speak at TechEd on and off over the past several years. This year, with a pre-con, its going to be slightly different. Instead of having to prepare a 75 minute presentation, we have to create essentially an all-day seminar.  This is both exciting and scary!  Luckily, I’m partnering up with Brian Randell, my co-author and friend, and we intend on knocking this out of the park.

2014 is starting off strong!

Orchestrator 2012 – Runbook Throttling Limits

runbook server

In Orchestrator 2012, you have runbook servers that execute your runbooks. Those runbook servers have throttling limits, that limit the maximum amount of concurrent runbooks that can run on a runbook server. By default, this value is 50, but it can be increased/decreased, depending on your environment. If your primary runbook server is executing 50 concurrent runbooks, and a 51st runbook is started, the runbook will fail over to a secondary runbook server. If the secondary runbook server is not available, then the runbook will queue up until a slot becomes free on a runbook server.

This leads to an interesting question when you are dealing with monitoring runbooks. A monitoring runbook sits and monitors until its trigger condition is met. Once the trigger condition is met, a new instance of the runbook is spawned to continue running, while the original runbook completes its execution. But what happens if a runbook server is currently at its throttling limit (for example, 50 concurrent runbooks), and one of the monitoring runbooks triggers? Does it still spawn another process, even though that would make 51 runbooks running on the server? Does it queue up?