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Behind the Scenes: SAP TechEd 2008 Berlin

On February 26, 2008, planning and preparation for SAP TechEd 2008 kicked into gear with a kick-off meeting in Palo Alto, California. The preparation process is truly a global effort, since SAP TechEd has events in Las Vegas, Shanghai, and Bangalore in addition to Berlin. Take a behind-the-scenes look at the IT support and the preparation involved with the sessions and speakers.



This global IT team prepares all the network infrastructure, laptops, and images that make this event happen. The IT Team works closely with the content team, speakers, and event team to coordinate the IT infrastructure for the events. IT is the backbone to the hands-on workshops that allow you to get your hands on SAP technology during the sessions. 


Quick facts on the IT infrastructure at SAP TechEd 2008 Berlin:


  • 943 Laptops
  • 66 Monitors
  • 35 Printers
  • 4400 Network patch cables
  • 28.5 km/17.71 mi of network cables
  • 675 Network mini switches (8 port)
  • 45 Network switches (24 / 48 ports)
  • 112 IP Phones
  • 35 IT team members on site

Laptop Image:

  • 3 weeks to build base images – 2 IT team members
  • 98 speakers configured the master images
  • 3 weeks for speakers to test the images
  • ~60 GB laptop image size
  • Images are reset nightly during the event


Speakers and Sessions

Eight months ago, the SAP TechEd Content Team started by defining the overall theme for this year’s events, based on the SAP NetWeaver Technology Map. Each of the tracks is one of the main capabilities of this technology map.

The Call for Proposals began on March 17, and was open to all SAP technology and development teams. The sessions were reviewed and selected by a team of track owners, and the session agenda was finalized at the end of April. Then the best speakers from SAP NetWeaver Product Management, SAP NetWeaver Regional Implementation Group (RIG), SAP Services, Global Partner and Ecosystem Group, SAP Business Suite team, BPX team, and Business Objects, an SAP Company were recruited for the sessions.

These speakers provide the IT requirements for the laptops and systems needed for their sessions, configure and test the imaged laptops for the sessions, create the presentations, and speak during the event. This process for the speakers started in May. It is not hours or days that these speakers spend preparing for SAP TechEd – it is weeks and months.

The speakers are the heart and soul of SAP TechEd!


Quick facts about speakers and sessions in Berlin:

  • 23 track owners from US and EMEA SAP NetWeaver Product Management and SAP NetWeaver RIG
  • 11 additional content representatives from Business Objects, SAP Services, Global Partner and Ecosystem Group, SAP Business Suite, and BPX team
  • 315 Speakers
  • 540 Hours of sessions

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      Author's profile photo Jim Spath
      Jim Spath
      Christina - it was great to meet you and the other team members in Berlin, and thanks for letting me crash your party after the Steve Winwood show. The rest of the older folks like me were pretty tired at the end of the week ;-).  Your blog forgot to mention the hours of non-stop, non-sleeping work by folks like you who make it happen for the community.  I had no complaints (other than wireless throughput) and heard great feedback from other attendees.  Here is the link to the blog I posted while at the restaurant in Berlin.  Jim
      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member
      Jim, it was great to meet you and enjoy dinner after the concert.  It's true that my blog only covered a snippet of the eneregy, work, commitment, and behind-the-scenes activity that it takes to make SAP TechEd such a great event.  It was the intersection of the engaged community members, the dedicated behind-the-scenes teams, and the engrossed attendees that created the buzz and energy in Berlin. I'm looking forward to a day of rest and then switching full gear for SAP TechEd Bangalore.