I feel a bit ashamed to admit that, despite using OpenBSD on a daily basis for nearly twenty years, I have never attended EuroBSDcon. Fortunately, there is a first time for everything - I went to EuroBSDcon 2022 in Vienna.
Because of environmental reasons (and the airport being nothing short of a complete clusterfuck), we took the Nightjet to Vienna. Scheduled to board it wednesday evening, we (me and three of the best travel companions) set out to meet a bit earlier, to grab a coffee and share our enthusiasm. Once boarded, we discovered that the bunks were harder than our heads - which was kind of unfortunate and resulted in a 'slight' deprivation of rest. Luckily, the nightly hours passed by quickly. After the arrival at Vienna HBF, we quickly spotted a familiar face: Philip Jocks. We walked to our hotels together, to drop off the luggage and get a refreshing shower. Mischa and I set out for two days of checking out Vienna and some hacking, while the remaining two travel companions attended a tutorial.
Later on thursday, we bumped into Philipp Bühler, whom shared his ongoing work to get Jitsi running on OpenBSD, for his talk on sunday. We took a somewhat quiet place to help Philipp work on it (emotional support and OpenBSD.Amsterdam donated the infrastructure to set it up). Due to the Java involved, this resulted in Henning Brauer calling us out as 'perverts' - which is, in fact, a joke. I think it's an awesome photo! Having ran a Jitsi server for more than a year, I was impressed by the work of Philipp, Aisha and others to port it to OpenBSD - I'll migrate my server from HardenedBSD to OpenBSD soon. On Friday, I met Tom Smyth face-to-face after years of communicating irregularly on social media. Nice to finally put a face to the words and avatar.
Fast forward to saturday, when the official conference was kicked off: the first talk was from Frank Karlitschek (the Nextcloud CEO) about the key benefits of decentralisation. Interesting, even though it was somewhat preaching to the choir. Alexander Bluhm gave a talk about increasing the network performance in OpenBSD, Theo Buehler about recent LibreSSL progress, Allan Jude about scaling ZFS for NVMe and Ken Westerback about filesystems on OpenBSD. There were plenty more - see the program for more details. Throughout the day, we met Mohammad, an awesome Dutch fellow.
In the evening, there was the 'social event', which was kept a big surprise. The city of Vienna invited the attendee's for a bite, drink and to interact with one another at the town hal;l. The evening was kicked off by a city representative, explaining on how open source (and BSD in general) overlaps with human rights. I suspect that there was some coaching involved by Henning ;). I met Marc Espie, Alexander Bluhm, Theo Buhler and others. After the 'social event' we went to two different venues and partied late - which made getting up on sunday somewhat of a hassle. For me a bit more - as there was lovely wine served at the social event.
On sunday, I've been to the talks of Tom Smyth (nsh), Philipp Bühler (Jitsi), Marc Espie (Ports), Landry Breuil (pledging and unveiling Firefox) and Samuel Aubertin (the 'backdoor' in make). Joined once again by the travel fellows, we went out for a nice burger and boarded the train back home. With a delay of three/four hours, we eventually arrived back in Utrecht and went back home, satisfied, happy and tired.
Thank you all - including the persons I am forgetting to mention (sorry!). I can't express my gratitude (without sounding like a toddler that got his first game console) - see you all next year!