My Rubrik Forward 2020 Session Picks

2020 marks the first year that my employer, Rubrik, is putting on a conference sized event called Rubrik Forward Digital Summit. Although the format has changed from physical to virtual, a lot of thought has gone into finding awesome customers and operators to present high quality technical content. My role in this event has been to review all of the technical content and provide guidance or assistance as needed.

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Because I have viewed all of the presentation collateral ahead of time, I have opinions! In this post, I’ll call out my top session picks in the hopes that you will find value in their shared experiences with Rubrik and other technologies.

How The Home Depot Manages a Large-Scale Rubrik Deployment

The Home Depot is one of those places where I have fond memories of purchasing hardware, power tools, and lumber. I never stopped to think about all of the technical professionals at work to supply data and services to thousands of stores. Fortunately, two engineers from The Home Depot – BB Laycock (Lead Systems Engineer) and Eric Alba (Sr. Systems Engineer) – are joining us at Forward to discuss their deployment of Rubrik Edge to 2,200 stores. ?

Snazzy Learning Objectives:

  • How to construct a functional design (at scale) that tackles state, error handling, and multiple technical teams.
  • Numerous architecture diagrams, deployment workflows, and operational details from a global enterprise.
  • Methods for deploying Infrastructure as Code (IaC) with technologies such as PowerShell, Ansible, and REST APIs.

How Pillsbury Reduced Backup Management time by 90% with Rubrik APIs

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman is one smart shop. In this session, Vincent Waniel (Network Engineer) shares his thoughts on leveraging the “Great Big World of APIs.” He definitely understands the importance of using solutions with an API-first mindset. It results in a world ripe with operational freedom and new possibilities. ?

Groovy Learning Objectives:

  • Automation use cases, including sourcing data for helpful health checks and constructing integrated performance dashboards with 3rd party solutions.
  • Augmenting existing manual data restoration workflows with new automated tasks to reduce toil and improve user experience.
  • A plethora of tips and tricks for administrators and engineers using PowerShell.

Using Ansible and Terraform to Codify your Environment

From the Developer Advocate team comes a fantastic, demo-driven session that is focused on using Red Hat Ansible and HashiCorp Terraform to do all of the heavy lifting. Rubrik powerhouse duo Rebecca Fitzhugh (Director of Developer Relations) and Matt Elliott (Developer Advocate) walk through calling APIs to create workflows that instantiate, protect, and recover workloads on-premises and in the cloud. The demos are lit! ?

Jazzy Learning Objectives:

  • Gain a strong understanding of how Infrastructure as Code (IaC) and Configuration Management are similar and also different, along with applicable use cases.
  • See demonstrations of how Rubrik can be managed using Red Hat Ansible and HashiCorp Terraform due to a robust set of APIs.
  • Absorb tips and guidelines for getting started in your environment.

Noteworthy Sessions

Below are additional sessions that caught my eye:

  • Servers are Really Heavy: How to Stop Racking and Stacking with Azure and TerraformPaul Cradduck, Senior Cloud and DevOps Architect
  • Kubernetes in the Enterprise What I’ve Learned Deploying Kubernetes in Large EnterprisesTim Carr, Staff Cloud Native Field Engineer at VMware.
  • Orchestrate and Automate with Rubrik PowerShellJaap Brasser, Developer Advocate at Rubrik, and Mike Preston, Developer Advocate at Rubrik.


In this post, I called out three of my top session picks in the hopes that you will find value in the speaker’s shared experiences with Rubrik and other technologies. There are many others to be found in the full session catalog.

If you’re keen to hear more on Rubrik’s immutable architecture, including a technical deep dive section, you can also tune into my session entitled How an Immutable Architecture Combats Against Ransomware.