LinuxFest Northwest 2016 Recap


April 27, 2016

The 17th annual LinuxFest Northwest was held this past weekend at Bellingham Technical College in Bellingham, Washington. This year’s event was super-busy with almost 2000 attendees, 4 tracks of presentations over 2 days, and a very busy expo.
Dru Lavigne and Michael Dexter from iXsystems and Steven Douglas, a local FreeBSD user, staffed the FreeBSD booth in the expo area. The first day had non-stop booth traffic from the moment the expo doors opened at 9:00 until the conference organizers shooed everyone out at 17:30. The second day was still busy but offered more opportunities to speak with the people who stopped by the booth. Much swag was given out as well as the latest versions of PC-BSD and FreeNAS.

It was standing room only for Dru’s presentation on Doc Like an Egyptian, and most attendees were responsible for some aspect of their project’s or employer’s documentation and interested in learning more about available documentation tools. There were several questions afterwards and quite a few attendees dropped by the booth to speak more about their documentation needs and to ask more questions. The slides and audio for this session are available on the website.

Michael spoke to two full rooms with 20 Years and Counting: Secrets to enduring user groups and The Devil in the Details: Switching to BSD from Linux, in place of Larry Cafiero of the Southern California Linux Expo who could not attend.

Overall, the “BSD love” was amazing at the event. People stopped by the booth with an equal amount of questions, praise and catching up, including BSDNow Producer JT Pennington and NetBSD developer number five Phil Nelson. Members of the LFNW Networking team proudly stopped by and reported that they are running the whole event on pfSense and an EtherApe display diagramming the live network. The Saturday social event included the “Alpha Geek” trivia competition which was won by Portlander Reid Kells. Attendees from around the world visited the booth, including from Canada, France, Germany and Taiwan, including a user in South Africa that wanted to know more about the bhyve hypervisor.
This was a great conference and we look forward to next year’s LFNW!

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