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Pyalla looks back on successful NonStop TBC 2023 Conference

Pyalla Technologies


No mistaking the intensity of the crowd as yet another gathering of the NonStop community takes place in Denver, Colorado

Following each and every NonStop TBC Conference that I can recall having attended, I am always quick to provide a recap. NonStop TBC 2023 Conference is no exception. Some may say that I live for major NonStop events, be they taking place here, in the US, or in other part of the world, as it is that one time where you get to test the waters on a scale otherwise not afforded followers of NonStop. And yes, there were a number of pleasant surprises that came from holding this conference in my home state if not quite my home town Denver, Colorado.

Roadside billboards will often remind visitors that they are about to enjoy Colorful Colorado and indeed, at this time of year, it is more colorful than at other times. But not this year, as the long wet and sunny summer saw the foliage clinging to green and somewhat reluctant to change. Yes, seasons can be fickle and for locals who believe it only takes an hour or so for the weather to change, it only required the slight shrug of the shoulders to let you know that change would happen soon.

Change has become a byword among many within the NonStop community. In response to many requests to do so, holding this year’s conference in Denver rather than in Northern California represented a divergence that many thought was needed. Sit through any of the post-conference discussion groups organized by the Connect team the number one item has always been, “do we need to come back here, next year?” Clearly with Denver playing host, this question was answered.

However, change is not limited to seasons or locations as the NonStop community knows all too well – NonStop itself is in the midst of change, much of it too long overdue. Whether you picked up on the theme or not, NonStop is now almost 100% a software offering. A completion of the promise made a decade ago at a similar event – NonStop TBC 2012. How many of us can recall the following statement given by then HPE CTO, Martin Fink: “Tandem identified itself as a hardware company and customers perceived its value was with hardware not available in any other way. So, we went through a pretty radical transformation to where NonStop is a software play; it’s where the customer sees the value today.”

Remember, this was back in 2012, where the only unique hardware component remained ServerNet but even here, while Fink expressed caution, he acknowledged “but we do want to get to that place where we are a pure software company so ultimately, yes, it may be replaced by InfiniBand (IB) but there’s lots of work to do.” Work to do? In the decade that followed we saw not only IB but RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE) and now with further changes in the wing, just Ethernet supported by standard NICs, or so it seems. Makes you wonder isn’t it what the NonStop community will be working with in 2033 and whether thinking back to 2023 and even 2012 brings forth yet another wry smile.

NonStop going virtual – co-located and on the cloud. NonStop supported by GreenLake – an appealing financial transaction. NonStop addressing viruses, hackers and ransomware all the while extolling the virtues of digital resilience. Whether you see digital resilience as an overarching theme embracing business resilience, cyber resilience, and much more is perhaps besides the point. Simply put, as a family the NonStop community embraced fault tolerance and then business continuity so the thought of adding any form of resilience is a plus in my books.

Many of the vendor sessions were focused on the theme of resilience and for good reason. As the NonStop community further embraces NonStop as software and accepts the virtual presence of NonStop, new rules need to be adopted to ensure that the quality of service familiar to the community can be maintained. There was definitely an uptick in interest in protecting this new world order for NonStop where no longer can we assume security by obscurity. There simply are too many skilled operators out there and all it would take is one disgruntled operator or system manager to wreak havoc on your NonStop deployment.

If as yet you have not read my latest post of September 20, 2023 to the Pyalla Technologies LLC business blog, Real Time View, then check out NonStop TBC 2023 – lasting impressions. A link to this post is provided below and while it addresses concerns I came away with as the conference wrapped up, the good news is that there are some pretty sharp folks within the NonStop community already looking at how deeply a virtual NonStop should penetrate clouds – the prospect of being on the cloud versus being in the cloud and with that thought, being able to respond to any CIO that yes, as per mandate, NonStop can be cloud based if that is indeed the imperative even as the question that follows will most likely be, but do we need to be in the cloud to provide the customer experience our business requires?

NonStop TBC 2023 was about change. Changing aspirations for NonStop together with changing deployment models. Change will continue unabated and it comes as no surprise then that the venue for NonStop TBC 2024 changes once again. Monterey, California may be a return to California, but the venue will be very different to what we have become accustomed to and that is perhaps the best news on change of all.

My coverage of NonStop TBC 2023 proved to be a constant theme of the posts that appeared prior and during the event. But to read them all just follow the links below.

Real Time View column (The Connection):

September – October, 2023
What the coming years hold for the NonStop community.

Real Time View blog:

August 28, 2023
Unexpected misdirection: What does change bring?

September 20, 2023
NonStop TBC 2023 – lasting impressions?


August 21, 2023
Dog days of summer coming to an end

September 24, 2023
When time comes to reflect, I don’t do a good job!

Richard Buckle
Cofounder and CEO
Pyalla Technologies, LLC.