Check out the new USENIX Web site.

Wednesday | Thursday | Friday | Invited Talk Speakers

David N. Blank-Edelman, Cookin' at the Keyboard
David N. Blank-Edelman is the Director of Technology at the Northeastern University College of Computer and Information Science and the author of the O'Reilly book Perl for System Administration. He has spent the past 20+ years as a system/network administrator in large multi-platform environments, including Brandeis University, Cambridge Technology Group, and the MIT Media Laboratory. He was the program chair of LISA '05 and was one of the LISA '06 Invited Talks co-chairs.

Kenneth G. Brill, The Economic Meltdown of Moore's Law
Kenneth G. Brill is the founder and Executive Director of the Uptime Institute and the 85-corporate member Site Uptime Network. He holds an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering and an MBA from the Harvard Business School. Many industry innovations, including dual power and the industry's Tier system for evaluating data center design level, trace back to his original conceptual work. In 1999, recognizing that increasing heat density would become critical to IT availability, Mr. Brill worked closely with the Thermal Management Consortium to publish the first 2000–2010 Heat Density Product Trends white paper. He has recently contributed to original research that has now shown data centers consuming 1 percent of total U.S. electrical power production in 2000, growing to 2 percent by 2005, and predicted (based on different assumptions) to grow to 3–4 percent by 2010. The absolute numbers caused by this growth have raised serious questions about the adequacy of the U.S. electric supply in an era of increasing concern about carbon emissions.

Tony Cass, The LHC Computing Challenge
Tony Cass has held various positions within CERN's Information Technology Department since completing a Ph.D. in Particle Physics at the University of Liverpool in 1987. Tony is currently responsible for the provision of CPU and data storage services to CERN's physics community and also for the management of CERN's Computer Centre. CERN, the world's largest particle physics laboratory, is preparing to switch on its new Large Hadron Collider, and the IT Department is gearing up to collect, store, and distribute data from the four LHC experiments at a rate of up to 15PB/year.

Alva L. Couch, Should the Root Prompt Require a Road Test?
Alva L. Couch is currently an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Tufts. Prof. Couch is the author of many LISA papers, and received "best paper" awards in both 1996 and 2005. In 2003, he received the SAGE Professional Service Award for his contributions to the theory of system administration. He currently serves as Secretary of the USENIX Board of Directors.

Lee Damon, Cookin' at the Keyboard
Lee Damon has a B.S. in Speech Communication from Oregon State University. He has been a UNIX system administrator since 1985 and has been active in SAGE since its inception. He assisted in developing a mixed AIX/SunOS environment at IBM Watson Research and has developed mixed environments for Gulfstream Aerospace and QUALCOMM. He is currently leading the development effort for the Nikola project at the University of Washington Electrical Engineering department. Among other professional activities, he is a charter member of LOPSA and SAGE and past chair of the SAGE Ethics and Policies working groups, and he was the chair of LISA '04.

Trey Darley, Prince Caspian on Location: Commodity Hardware and Gaffer Tape
Trey had a typical geek childhood for his generation: TI 99-A, Tandy Computer Whiz Kids, lots of HyperTalk, and a dialup shell account to teethe on. Thanks to some kindly mentors, a lot of luck, and a bit of foraging, that early interest turned into a career. He basically lucked into this last gig on Prince Caspian when Duncan Nimmo (who ran IT operations on the New Line Tolkien films and on the first Narnia movie) came into town seeking help. One sweet referral later and he was neck-deep in it. Over the ensuing months he got to see some neat things and meet some terrific people. The main challenges faced were (of course!) budget, the rate at which their user base grew as they turned the corner from preproduction to full-on shooting, and especially how to cope with the ever-growing number of locations as their kit and their users flitted back and forth across Central Europe. He'll tell the whole story (with input from some of his colleagues) and hope you enjoy it.

Glenn Fink, Who's the Boss? Autonomics and New-Fangled Security Gizmos with Minds of Their Own
Glenn Fink is a senior research scientist at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory ( in the Cyber Security group. His research interests include designing security technologies while keeping the human users in mind. His recent fascination with autonomic computing led to a ;login: article (PDF) that led to this talk.

Carson Gaspar, Deploying Nagios in a Large Enterprise Environment
Carson Gaspar is currently a systems administrator with Goldman Sachs. He has worked for many large, global enterprises, specializing in information security and UNIX engineering and architecture.

Andrew Hume, No Terabyte Left Behind
Andrew Hume is a Lead Member of Technical Staff at AT&T Labs—Research in the software systems research department. He has worked in the areas of software tools, pattern matching and string searching, processing massive datasets, marshalling millions of data feed files, and cajoling high availability and performance from clusters of UNIX PCs. Currently, he is investigating how to best use small disk caches (say, 200TB) in front of large amounts of data on tape. He served 8 years on the USENIX Board of Directors, including 4 years as President, and on the Board for LOPSA. His main email address has remained unchanged since 1981.

David Josephsen, Homeless Vikings: BGP Prefix Hijacking and the Spam Wars
Author of Building a Monitoring Infrastructure with Nagios (Prentice Hall, 2007), Dave Josephsen is the Senior Systems Engineer for DBG, Inc., where he maintains a collection of geographically dispersed server farms and occasionally puts paper in the printer. His co-authored work on Bayesian spam filtering earned a Best Paper award at USENIX LISA '04. He has been published in both ;login; and Sys Admin magazines on topics relating to security, systems monitoring, and spam mitigation, and currently writes "iVoyeur," the monitoring column for ;login; magazine.

Shane Knapp, Scaling Production Repairs and QA Operations in a Live Environment
Shane has been a professional systems administrator and software engineer since 1996, and has previously worked at NASA Ames, Softbank Services Group, and Excite, as well as many other Bay Area startups. He has been with Google since 2003 and helped scale the growth of the QA and repairs processes to meet with the growing fleet size, dealing with server count growth and process refinement. His Web site is

Mark "Simple Nomad" Loveless, Beyond NAC: What's Your Next Step?
Mark "Simple Nomad" Loveless, senior security researcher and whitehat hacker, enables Vernier's Threat Labs to rapidly address new security threats and exploits, as well as provides focused directions for future research. This includes monitoring current security industry research and announcements, analyzing security threats, and providing checks/filters for Vernier's customers. Mark is a frequently sought lecturer at security conferences and industry events around the globe. He is the founder of Nomad Mobile Research Center, an international group of hackers that explores technologies. He has spent years developing and testing security strengths for a broad range of computer systems. He has also authored numerous papers, tools, and articles, all dealing with the computer security and insecurity. He has been quoted in print, online, and television media outlets regarding computer security and privacy.

Lou Marchant, Data Center Growing Pains
Lou has been with Sun for 11 years and has held positions in engineering, product development, and account management. Currently she is the SPARC Product Boss for the U.S. and the Board Chair for the Data Center Ambassadors. This year there is a focus on the EcoEnterprise, and the DC Ambassadors are leading the initiative with Sun's customers. Prior to joining Sun, Lou worked for Cray Research in the Business Systems Division. The division was acquired by Sun Microsystems in 1996. Lou started her career as a Corporate Architect with Frito Lay and moved into engineering as a Finite Element Analysis Specialist. In her spare time Lou campaigns a 1959 MGA in historic wheel-to-wheel road races. She has been a driver's champion three times in her class.

Bruce Moxon, A Service-Oriented Data Grid: Beyond Storage Virtualization
Bruce Moxon is Senior Director, Strategic Technology at Network Appliance, where he works with enterprise customers deploying grid computing and data management solutions. He brings more than twenty years of experience in distributed computing for both scientific and commercial applications, and writes, speaks, and teaches extensively on the continuing evolution of grid computing. Prior to joining Network Appliance, Mr. Moxon was Chief Solutions Architect at Panasas, where he worked with customers deploying scalable storage solutions for Linux clusters. Mr. Moxon has architected and developed solutions for a number of high-throughput computing environments, including Perlegen Sciences' SNP discovery system, Bank of America's CRM and analytics systems, and NASA's Earth Observing System.

Alexander Muentz, Hardening Your Systems Against Litigation
Alexander Muentz is both a sysadmin (since 1999) and a lawyer (admitted to the bar in Pennsylvania and New Jersey). He'd love to be a hacker public defender but has to earn his living somehow. He's interested in the intersection of law and technology, explaining the law to IT professionals and technology to lawyers. He's spoken at LISA last year and also given talks at HOPE and DEFCON. He's been published in ;login: and Sys Admin. He hopes he isn't as boring as this sounds. He's currently in private practice, helping clients avoid and prepare for litigation.

Erik Nygren, Experiences with Scalable Network Operations at Akamai
Erik Nygren is a Chief Systems Architect in Akamai's Networks and Operations organization. He has been at Akamai since June of 1999 in roles including development and systems engineering. Prior to working at Akamai, Erik was a graduate student in MIT's Parallel and Distributed Operating Systems group and also worked in the Intelligent Mechanisms group at NASA Ames Research Center.

Cat Okita, The Security Butterfly Effect
Cat Okita is a lapsed sysadmin and professional paranoid with more than 10 years of experience solving problems that are much more fun as stories, after the fact, in the financial, Internet, manufacturing, and telecom sectors. Cat has spoken at LISA and DEFCON about identity and reputation, co-chairs the Managing Sysadmins Workshop at LISA, and programs for fun, in her spare time.

Deepak Patil, The Microsoft Windows Live (WL) and MSN Infrastructure
Deepak Patil works at Microsoft as a Director of Operations in the Global Foundation Services division. His teams have been delivering Microsoft's large-scale services for 7 years. The services his teams manage include Windows Live Messenger, Spaces, Mobile, and more. He also manages the Business Intelligence and Service Capacity and Performance Optimization Groups within Windows Live. He brings strong experience and expertise in service design, delivery, management, and optimization.

Don Scelza, The Biggest Game of Clue® You Have Ever Played
Don's career has covered a number of diverse areas. In the technology field he has done research in large multiprocessor OS design and in a number of UNIX ports, and work in high speed networking. In management he has run large IT and customer support organizations. He has been the VP of Quality for a large telecommunications equipment manufacturer. He has owned two technology consulting firms. Outside of technology, his interests have been in areas dealing with emergency response. He is a practicing paramedic and a medical specialist on the Pennsylvania USAR team. He performs lost-person search and search management as well as high-angle and below-ground technical rescue. As a principle in CDS Outdoor School, Don teaches wilderness pre-hospital medicine, wilderness search and rescue techniques, and medicine for austere environments.

Ken Simpson, Using Throttling and Traffic Shaping to Combat Botnet Spam
As the founder and CEO of MailChannels, Ken's primary interest is in discovering new ways to solve the problems caused by spam by understanding the motivations that drive spammers. Prior to founding MailChannels, Ken Simpson was a founder and CTO of FatPort, Canada's largest wireless hotspot provider. At FatPort, Ken was responsible for securing financing, assembling a world-class executive team, managing the development and roll-out of the company's otspot network, and establishing strategic technology relationships with leading companies including Intel. Ken has a successful track record of co-founding and building successful technology companies in a number of sectors, including ActiveState (now a division of Sophos), Circa Communications (now the IP telephony division of Polycom), and Sutus (a start-up developing converged solutions for small business). Ken graduated with distinction from Simon Fraser University and Santa Clara University with an Honors Degree in Computer Engineering.

Guido Trotter, Ganeti: An Open Source Multi-Node HA Cluster Based on Xen
Guido Trotter works as a system administrator at Google, and his main focus is the development of internal platforms, among which features Ganeti. He is interested in virtualization, and is also a Debian Developer and member of the Debian Xen Team.

Avleen Vig, Scaling Production Repairs and QA Operations in a Live Environment
Avleen has been a systems administrator since 1998, working at Internet Vision and other companies in London, before moving to California in 2001 to work at EarthLink. He has been a systems administrator at Google since 2005, writing and maintaining tools used by repairs teams to facilitate growth in a constantly changing environment. His Web site is

?Need help? Use our Contacts page.

Last changed: 9 Nov. 2007 jel