I got the chance to sign up for a few courses from the Brent Ozar Unlimited team and took it. I struggle to find time for training, between work commitments, travel, and family time, it’s hard to fit in a day or two. I’ve almost given up on going to in-person classes mostly because of the time involved.
I’m trying this online, both to learn something and see how the experience is. I’ve watched Brent present many times, and I think he does a good job of explaining concepts. While I suspect there’s a good amount of things in this course that I’ll already know, my experience is that it’s both good to get reminded of concepts from a different point of view as well as get some tips/tricks that I might not know. I’m always amazed how I might learn one small thing in a beginner session that I never knew.
The signup is simple. Go to the class page and add this to your cart and pay for it. The process is simple, and you get a good agenda as well as a schedule. I really appreciate the schedule, including the breakdown into what’s covered during different blocks.
There are multiple dates/times to choose from, but this is online during the workday, Eastern US time, so plan accordingly. For me, this means a slightly early morning, but since I can turn up the speakers and walk to the coffee machine, this works out well.
A couple weeks before the class, I got one of those automated emails from GoToWebinar. I’m used to receiving 3-4 of these before an event, so I promptly ignored it.
Then I got a second one a few days later, and I decided to look at this one. I managed to actually read this section:
“To get ready, go here:
And read the “0.1 Before the Class” module. There’s a ton of prep work and instructions in there for you, including a few videos to watch to prep, and you can download the slides to follow along. ”
I removed the URL, since I’m not sure this is public, but in any case, I clicked the link to find a description of the class, in usual well-written Brent style. There was also a series of links on the side, for various slides and labs.
The Before the Class is a page with 4 videos from Brent that are supposed to prep you and give you some background. It’s 69 minutes, so I set aside some time and got moving.
And I ran out of time. I watched 3 of the videos, but ended up not getting the fourth one done before the class because of family and travel commitments. I should have tried to watch more in short periods, but I kept putting things off. I know a lot of this stuff, but if you’re new to the class and want to learn this, spend the time to get some basics down.
I didn’t bother, mostly because I use GoToWebinar every few weeks, between my work or watching other things. As a result, I know my PC works. If you don’t do that, make sure you set things up.
Contact and Notifications
I went back and looked. I got these notifications:
- A confirmation of the purchase
- A 2 week notices that asked me to go to the class page, and also get started on Slack.
- A 2 week (minus 1 day) email that asked me to read the “0.1 Before the Class” module.
- Two 4 day notices, a day apart (one was a 3 day notice). Not sure if this was correct, but these were roughly the same.
- An email the day before the class with a VM URL and credentials
- A “start in 1 hour” notice
That might seem like a lot, but I think this is pretty good. I might miss one of the advance notices in a busy world, so it’s nice to get the second one. I could glance at it and delete it if I had read the previous one.
There’s a good amount of prep stuff out there, and Brent has each module of his class recorded, so I could have gotten ahead and watched some of the class ahead of time. I could have also played with labs a bit, though he warns you IN CAPS to be careful about not breaking some things.
The process before the class was well done. There is a good amount to help me prepare, but I won’t know until I get to the class if the prep was good enough.
Looking forward to starting. Actually, but the time this publishes, I might have started, so we’ll see.