Lack of a *real* Web Operations Conference

Was talking with Joyce the other day and we talked about how there’s no real Web Ops conference out there currently. The closest is possibly MySQL Conference or maybe the PHP conferences, where ops/sysadmin types will go and attend the few talks about infrastructure topics, but the main audience seems to be developers.

I could count Usenix or LISA as “web ops” conferences, but quite frankly most of the sessions are presented by academics or university types, and the amount of real-world web ops experience isn’t all that high.
So, people who make conferences: listen up.

I think that there are lots of sysadmins and ops people who would go to a conference solely about web operations. Here’s my good stab at topics:

  1. – Dev/Ops cooperation: Why It’s Good and What It Means
  2. – Databases: Hardware Performance Differences
  3. – AutoInstallation of Clusters
  4. – Advanced Load Balancer Fu
  5. – Performance Metrics: Tying Server Stats to User Behavior
  6. – API Abuse/Management Tools

So ?


  1. Sean   •  

    Great idea. I think there are a lot of specific things to web apps that other places just gloss over.


  2. Gordon   •  

    Hmm, I think the boundary these days between ops people and developers is getting pretty vague, especially in the startup world. And a conference where the focus was on real-world, experienced ops people sounds much more appealing to me than most of the conferences that are currently out there. I’d probably also find it useful to have a topic about development work that everyone seems to duplicate within their own companies to take advantage of the most popular ops setups (i.e. db drivers that are replication friendly, partitioning friendly, etc). So, even as a developer, i’d be down to attend. 🙂

  3. Chad Dickerson   •  

    I have a crazy idea. . . why don’t we put together an ops conference at Yahoo! John, sounds like you just volunteered to be the conference chair! 🙂

    I can help you with this.

  4. Marco   •  

    This would be great…

  5. Norby   •  

    Count me in. Having just been to LISA, it was a big disappointment. It’s an SA conference, 100%. I’m not in SA anymore, thankfully. While there were tidbits here & there that could be applied, nobody there (aside from a technical talk about how google operates that I wasn’t able to fully attend) was really talking about live stuff.


  6. Brady Forrest   •  

    Hey John,

    We had a WebOps track at the Web 2.0 Expo. Have you checked that out? What do you think of it? Drop me a mail and we can chat about it.

  7. John Herren   •  

    Count me in. At some point web operations need more ingredients than just LAMP. Let’s share recipies.

  8. Steven Citron-Pousty   •  

    I tried to get people to talk about setting up Open Source geospatial infrastructure at WhereCamp and got nowhere. I would love to see some hands on – real world lectures on what it takes to bring up and maintain the infrastructure. Kinda like the thread Don MacAskill had going on using Sun equipment.

  9. wbwither   •  

    The ApacheCon conferences usually have multiple talks covering security, performance, scaling, and load balancing. Of course, it’s from an Apache viewpoint, so you won’t hear things like thttpd and the like, and certainly they don’t branch over into DB scaling, but it’s *partly* what you’re looking for. The US 2007 con will be held in November in Atlanta; they are currently accepting submissions. See the schedules for the Euro 2007 con here for a sampling of the kind of topics you can expect:

  10. Mark Nottingham   •  

    I think that’s part of the problem; while Apache is a good all-around server, and wonderfully configurable, too many developers treat it as the only solution, and use it in places that other tools — whether thttpd, pound, squid, hardware load balancers or whatever — could be much more effective.

  11. Jesse Robbins   •  

    *ahem* – please consider this issue resolved. Please see: this page for further updates.

    Jesse Robbins
    Global WebOps

  12. allspaw   •     Author

    Yep, Velocity it is. 🙂

  13. Stacey   •  

    Yes, Velocity is for Web Ops. It is a smaller show but very targeted and attracts technical folks.

    This year there is also a free conference for Web Operations folks called Keynote Live! It is co-located with Velocity. Keynote Live is free!

    Keynote Live is on June 22, 2009 and Velocity is between June 23-24. Both will be held at the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose, CA. All registrants to Keynote Live! get a 25% discount to the O’Reilly Velocity conference.

    To register, go to:

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