Interop Las Vegas 2010 is here!

April 22nd, 2010 at 11:05 PM  1 Comment

I am traveling to Las Vegas for Interop 2010 April 26th – April 29th.  Interop is a global business technology event that combines in-depth educational programs, workshops, real-world demonstrations and live technology implementations.  Interop is focused towards business technology professionals or anyone who deals with business technology. 

While at Interop I will be posting about everything I see as well as tweeting about everything I see from the keynotes to the expo floor and the conference tracks.  I have scheduled some time with companies like Avocent and DisplayLink to discuss their upcoming products.  If you would like us to check anything out while we are there just send me a message or post a comment.  For those of you heading to Interop you shoud checkout the Spiceworks contest.  I am sure you will get some attention if you are one of the winners!

KVM over IP and a Bad Demo

November 26th, 2009 at 5:45 PM  1 Comment

We are going through a major Avaya upgrade at work.  Since we are moving to VoIP we are making changes to our network as well as some of the infrastructure to prepare for the upgrades.  We have a bit left over from the budget so we are trying to fit a KVM over IP solution into the current budgeted numbers and I can tell you it has been pretty challenging.

I have previously used the Startech KVM over IP product as well as one of their switched PDU’s and I was not impressed.  The pricing fit into our budget but I didn’t want to buy crappy equipment jut because it fit into our price range.  After looking through the CDW website I found a solution from Aten that I liked so I contacted my CDW rep to schedule a demo.  He also said I should look at a Belkin solution and a Avocent solution all within the budget.

In the mean time Belkin had a demo available on their web site.  I signed up for the demo and it worked pretty well but I was hoping for a more robust solution so I waited for the Aten demo to be setup.

The Aten demo started off like most demos, with a power point presentation written word by word by a sales representative.   The technician that was supposed to be joining the call was running late and after the sales rep. finished his power point, he hunted down the technician and got him on the phone.  The technician shared their screen and logged into one of their units.  He jumped around a lot and the connection between him and the KVM device was severed twice during the 20 minute demo.  He claimed it was network issues at his local site and nothing to do with the Aten equipment.

After the warm and fuzzy feeling disappeared after seeing the bad Aten demo I asked my CDW rep to get a representative from Avocent on the phone.  We scheduled a demo with Avocent and everything went very well.  I was very impressed with their product and everything worked the way it should.

I figured I would end this post with a little bit of advice to any sales representatives reading this.  If someone asks for a demo of your product this is your chance to close the deal.  Make sure everyone is on time, you don’t just read directly from a power point AND when it comes time to show your product it actually works.  I would say if you could only choose one of these points to excel at… the last one is the most important.