Once upon a time there was MacWorld. It was big, it was bold, and Apple was there. Many of the attendees of the original conference have now splintered into smaller conferences that make sense to them. Some of these are vendor-centric, some product-centric, some business-focused. This page is for the sysadmins out there.
I have another for developers, at Apple Development Conferences
Let’s go through each of the Apple Admin Conferences:
- ACES Conference: ACES is a conference for Apple Consultants. Held June 4th to 6th in Kansas City, MO, ACES is a really good introduction for many on running a Mac consultancy, represented by many of the larger and more well established Apple consultancies in the US and Canada.
- Command-IT: This is the first year of the Command-IT conference in France! Based on the people putting it on, I’m sure it’ll be fantastic. More at https://www.command-it.fr
- Filewave Conference: The Filewave Alliance Conference focuses on the latest and greatest with FileWave and provides systems administrators of FileWave environments with access to developers, deployment information, etc.
- JAMF Software’s JNUC (JAMF Nation User Conference) is a conference primarily geared at the Apple Administrator who use the Casper Suite for their administrative efforts. There are some sessions on general administrative topics, such as what a plist is and general shell scripting. If you spend a lot of your day in Jamf Pro, then this is a great conference to check out, held in Minneapolis in the fall. November 12 to 14, 2019.
- Jamf Nation Roadshows: The Jamf Nation Roadshows are a resurrection of an excellent event from many years ago, where Jamf went around the country hosting day long mini-conferences for customers and systems administrators. But now it’s global! Held throughout each summer, these smaller events are much more intimate than the larger conference.
- LOPSA: Great conferences and events held by LOPSA’s national chapters. Lots of speakers, discussing how IT professional from a variety of disciplines can make the jump from a junior or mid-level engineer, into the upper echelons of IT madness. If you’ve never been, definitely check out LISA or one of the SCaLE events.
- Mac Admin and Developer Conference UK: MacADUK is a conference for Apple administrators and developers, with a lot of sessions and good content, held in London from March 26th to 27th. I’ll have to miss this one as I’ll be surfing in South America again, no offense. To see sessions from previous seasons:
- MacDevOps YVR: MacDevOps is a conference from June 12th to the 14th in Vancouver, with sessions ranging across the Devops build-train. This one is definitely for the scripty amongst the Mac community who are heavy into systems automation and, well, DevOps as the name would imply… To see sessions from previous years, check out:
- MacSysAdmin: All things Apple, in Sweden. Definitely one of my favorite conferences ever ever ever. This will be my tenth year speaking there. Lots of really good content, with a very global perspective. Really great people to network with as well, in a relaxed atmosphere. MacSysAdmin 2018 will take place in Göteborg, Sweden from October 1st to 4th. Videos from past years are online at:
- MacTech: This conference is a good look at how environments grow (if you’re growing) or to get some really good tips and tricks for your grown up environment. MacTech Conference is held in LA, so bring your wetsuits and I’ll have to show you some of the better surfing spots in South Bay. This year, it’ll be October 15th to 19th. Sessions from previous years available at:
- Mobile World Congress: I usually find the people at a show like this to be less technical, more business analysts, more interested in the why and results than the how. It’s a good group, but different from those who spend all of their time integrating systems. Held in early May, with global shows globally, later in the year. For a sampling of sessions check out their YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/user/GSMAOnline/playlists.
- MobileIron Live: MobileIron has a new(ish) conference in New York this year. If you use MobileIron to manage your Apple devices, definitely worth giving this one a look! Videos from previous years are available at:
- Objective By The Sea: Security has been a topic that has come up from time to time at MacAdmin conferences. But Patrick Wardle did a fanatic job putting together a lineup of speakers for the first real security-focused conference for MacAdmins. I didn’t make it to the inaugural conference but heard great things (like really awesome thing). It was in November, so might not come back around for a bit, but when it does, make sure to check it out!
- Penn State MacAdmins Conference: 2019’s event will be held July 9th – 12th at the Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center in State College, PA. Penn State Mac Admins emerged during a time of uncertainty with WWDC and systems administration topics. If you’re part of the infamous MacEnterprise list that Penn State runs, and you find the conversations there relevant to your job then this is likely a conference you’ll want to attend. It’s priced well, vendor agnostic, and run by one of the most talented MacAdmin teams around, too! Videos from past years are available at:
- University of Calgary MacDeployment: The great people at the University of Calgary took the 2018 year off, so I’m looking forward to seeing if they fire it back up in 2019!
- Usenix: I think this is a great show for the Unixy amongst us. Many of the topics covered are highly relevant to the Mac admin.
- VMworld (formerly AirWatch Connect) is a great conference for people managing heterogenous mobile deployments that rely on Workspace One and AirWatch. The conference will be held this year in San Francisco, from August 25 – 29, 2019. Videos from past years are available at:
- WWDC: Everyone knows about Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference. But it’s getting more and more difficult to get tickets to the conference, and if you use a third party tool to manage your systems and aren’t writing code, you can watch the sessions online and save your continuing development/training funds to check out one of the other conferences. Videos from past years are available at:
- X World: Originally part of the AUC in Australia, X World has topics ranging from Munki to Casper. Initially a very education-centric conference, there were Apple administrators from around Australia gathered to share their knowledge and green information from others on managing large numbers of Apple systems. And the organizers and delegates are pretty awesome people to hang out with. Great networking. I highly recommend that if you are a Mac admin in Australia that you support the AUC by becoming a member! Videos from past years are available at:
There are user groups, meetups, and more almost every night of the week in larger cities. Many of these are available at:
So there’s never a shortage of options for professional development.