Every now and then “It happens.”

I have lost count of the number of times I’ve given the Holistic Database Security talk. The talk has evolved over the years, it continues to evolve, and is a mature presentation. Yesterday at Collaborate 2017, It Happened!

I was asked to have my presentation recorded to put out on the web. I’m always very agreeable to having my presentations recorded to reach a larger audience. A representative from Collaborate came up to me to plug a thumb drive into my laptop with the recording software. My reaction was, you got to be kidding, how do I know that thumb drive is safe? I travel with a sacrificial lamb computer, so I was not too worried about malware.  Turns out allowing this software to run on this machine was not such a great idea.

When I do my presentations, I typically have an Oracle 12c VM running to do my demos along with Chrome to display my slides. My sacrificial lamb computer is not the newest, or fastest laptop out there, in fact I’ve been using it for a few years now.

About 10 minutes into my presentation I noticed something was amiss; my laptop was running much slower than normal then locked up for several minutes. This through me for a loop. Finally, I pulled the thumb drive, and did a hard reboot of my computer. (holding the power button down, yea it was that bad)

Lessons learned:

  • Always have a hard copy of my presentation available.
  • Things go wrong, have a disaster recovery plan.
  • Doing a presentation in front of an audience is PRODUCTION and should be treated like production. Don’t introduce something to the environment that has not been fully tested.
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