November 2006


One of the tasks I often get involved in is system sizing and capacity planning for GIS systems. The key reference for this is the excellent System Sizing Document produced twice a year by Dave and his Group at ESRI. The Paper is pretty long and can be kind of daunting when you first see it, however understanding it all is vital if you are going to be undertaking any detailed sizing tasks.

I had been planning on putting together a Post about which were the key bits of the document to look at if you wanted to do a rough sizing effort. So i just had a look back at the document and noticed that it has been updated with an October 2006 edition. There have been some pretty fundamental changes, to bring it in line with some of the new tools that are being developed to help the process and make it more up to date.

The Key chapters 7 and 8 have been completely re-written and updated. With the Release of 9.2 the new document has been updated with details of the sizing and performance as well as licensing mechanisms and recommended configurations. A new hardware baseline has been included and it also takes account of multicore hardware. The ArcGIS Server sections are much more comprehensive than in the last document, and i suspect there is still a bit more to come to help with some of the more complex aspects of 9.2 sizing issues. All I have to do now is find the time to digest the whole document, maybe on the flight back from Barcelona tomorrow.

This is obviously the week for conferences, what with the ESRI European User Conference happening in Athens, its also the first week of the Microsoft Tech-ed conference.  This year is a little different, with the conference smaller but spread over 2 weeks and split into 2 streams.  This week is the developers conference and next week is the IT Forum.  I think I preferred it as it used to be with developers and system admin mixed together as I tend to be involved in both areas, however 2 weeks is much too long to justify being at a conference, so I chose the developer half this year. 

 Barcelona is a great city and so far the weather has been pretty good.  Microsoft certainly know how to look after delegates, with an endless supply of free doughnuts and sugared beverages!

The key things that are being talked about here are .Net 3.0  and related technologies such as LINQ, WPF and WCF, also there is the launch of office 2007 and Windows Vista. LINQ in particular looks like a really cool and very useful framework. 

Unlike previous Tech Ed events there are no Mappoint or spatial related sessions, there is a virtual earth stand where they are showing off the new Virtual Earth 3D ActiveX component, It does have a certain wow factor seeing it embedded in a browser, even if it is IE only.  There was also an interesting talk about Windows live mashups, though it focused mainly on things other than maps such as contacts.  Nothing very new although a hint that some kind of online storage service may be coming as well as a possible link up between Virtual Earth 3D and the new MS Flight Simulator.

Its certainly a great place to be to find out whats coming that will impact windows projects over the next couple of years.