This year might not have resulted in the tech boost the industry hoped for, but that doesn't mean network innovation has ground to a halt. Advancements are happening, and NetWorld+Interop Las Vegas 2003 is the place to see some of the latest technologies put to the test in real-world environments.This year might not have resulted in the tech boost the industry hoped for, but that doesn't mean network innovation has ground to a halt. Advancements are happening, and\u00a0NetWorld+Interop Las Vegas 2003\u00a0is the place to see some of the latest technologies put to the test in real-world environments. Mike Millikin, senior vice president of Interop Worldwide, says attendees will get a look at everything from autonomic computing and\u00a0Multi-protocol Label Switching\u00a0to\u00a0802.1x\u00a0and\u00a0iSCSI."We're getting into the concept phase for a lot of these technologies, working through the details of how we actually deploy them broadly," he says. "It's a very good counterpoint to the gloom and doom that may be out there in terms of: 'There's nothing new. It's all stale, and there's no growth.' There's a lot of growth potential, and people have to see the possibilities and understand how to hook things together. [N+I] is one of the ways they do it."Microsoft will tout its Windows Server 2003, running a hands-on workshop to let users work through issues such as security and Active Directory, Millikin says. Of course, the show also will include experts leading hundreds of workshops, tutorials and seminars.Millikin says he expects as many as 40,000 people to head to the Las Vegas Convention Center for N+I. So if you're one of them, keep this planner on hand. We've picked out some of the highlights of the weeklong event to help you navigate through dozens of offerings and get the most out of the show. Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday iLabs at the show AvantoGo users: Download the guide\u00a0to your PalmMonday, April 28VPN days9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday and Tuesday With employees increasingly on the move, it's a challenge to keep them constantly connected. VPN Day 1 and Day 2 will aim to provide the fundamentals and real-world examples you need to make tough decisions about VPNs in your network.VPN Day 1: Fundamentals, Fred Avolio, principal at Avolio Consulting, and Dave Piscitello, president of Core Competence, will lay out the basics of VPNs. The day will end with a debate about whether VPNs are necessary and discussions around questions you should ask your VPN vendor.VPN Day 2: IP Security design and deployment will build on the fundamentals outlined in VPN Day 1. Joel Snyder of Opus One will lead Tuesday's all-day seminar that will address how to build real-world IPSec-based VPNs and integrate them into existing network infrastructure.This session will include general design principles important in any IPSec VPN implementation, including addressing, firewalls, routing, security and authentication; focus on site-to-site issues such as how to design and deploy site-to-site VPNs throughout your business; and demonstrate how remote access VPNs can be established and managed securely.Tutorial: Future networking solutions: Broadband access, Gigabit Ethernet, wireless, IP mobility, storage, MPLS, QoS, IP & optical, UCP, IPv68:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Applications such as videoconferencing, storage and voice over IP are becoming critical to business, and networks must be designed to support them. This tutorial, led by Cisco network consultant Peter Tomsu, will provide insight into how best to design and deploy networks using the latest technology. It will cover everything from broadband, Gigabit Ethernet and wireless to dense wavelength division multiplexing and iSCSI. The tutorial also will cover Multi-protocol Label Switching, MPLS VPNs, quality of service, traffic engineering and advanced control planes, which allow centralized management of different network protocols such as SONET and ATM.The New Age data center1 to 2 p.m. Security, scalability and redundancy are key in today's data centers. Years ago, that meant running multiple dedicated servers. Next came multifunction appliances, which reduced some of that mess.These days the focus is on virtualization. James Metzler, vice president, Ashton, Metzler & Associates; Dave Roberts, vice president of strategy and co-founder of Inkra Networks; and Peter Manca, vice president of software engineering at Engenera, will walk you through the latest in data center virtualization and talk about which technologies are ready for prime time.Breakthrough technologies4:15 to 5:15 p.m. While it's not clear when the tech sector will pick up, one thing is clear: Innovation is still happening. In this session, Johna Till Johnson, president and chief research officer at Nemertes Research and a Network World columnist, and Marv Chartoff, CTO Infrastructure Transformation Services at Unisys, will detail some technologies they believe will be "breakthrough" technologies in the years to come.Areas include "integration technologies" such as application portals and utility computing that focus on bringing together users, applications and resources to enhance productivity.Tuesday, April 29John Chambers keynote: Driving the next phase of productivity and technology innovation9 to 10 a.m. John Chambers, president and CEO of Cisco, will open Interop with a keynote address on how to drive productivity by taking a new approach to networking. Chambers will talk about the Intelligent Information Network, which is based on a "network of networks" where service provider networks, enterprise networks, the Internet and other environments are seamlessly integrated. "CIOs and technologists will decide on which type of infrastructure they implement, and Cisco's goal is to be the company to deliver the networks that provide the greatest productivity gains, regardless of network type," the company says.Self-healing networks: Fact or fantasy10:15 to 11:15 a.m. It's every network manager's dream - a network that identifies problems and heals itself, all without human intervention. Dennis Drogseth, vice president of Enterprise Management Associates and co-author of Network World's Network\/ Systems Management newsletter, will moderate this panel discussion with Sangeeta Anand, vice president of product management, Internet Technologies Division, at Cisco; Trent Waterhouse, director of marketing at Arisma Management Technologies; Tom Bishop, CTO at Vieo; Jeff Barker, director of product marketing at Packeteer; and Cathy Fulton, CTO, NetQoS. The panel will discuss the latest in technologies that predict problems and take appropriate automated action.Storage meets the network: Convergence or train wreck?11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Storage and network technology have combined to create storage-area networks. Along with the benefits of having storage available across network infrastructure, however, are the drawbacks associated with any high-volume application. Ann Skamarock, senior analyst at Enterprise Management Associates and co-author of Network World's Storage newsletter, will lead this debate about the pros and cons of networked storage. Steve Kleinman, CTO, Network Appliance; Bill Huber, CTO\/vice president of engineering, StoneFly Networks; Mike Feinberg, CTO, HP; and Tom Edsall, CTO, Andiamo\/Cisco will discuss how to get the most out of SANs.Security information management2 to 3:15 p.m. Managing security can become a headache for network administrators dealing with myriad management, analysis and reporting tools from multiple vendors. Ellen Messmer, a senior editor at Network World, will lead this discussion about how the latest products might make it easier to monitor and analyze threats to the network. Bob Dimicco, director of marketing for the Secure Managed Networks Business Unit at Cisco; Niten Ved, COO, NetForensics; Samuel Curry, product management of eTrust Solutions at Computer Associates; Sharon Ruckman, senior director of product management for Symantec Security Response; and Robert Hansen, product manager, managed security scanning and analysis services at Cable & Wireless, will discuss the latest trends in security information management.Wireless in the wiring closet3:30 to 4:45 p.m. Wireless LANs are becoming all the rage as companies seek to untether their workforce. But there are questions about security and performance as this network architecture is put in place. Gartner principal analyst Rachna Ahlawat will talk about how network managers can apply the principles they use for wired LANs to wireless and hybrid wired and wireless networks. Pankaj Manglik, founder and CEO, Aruba Networks; Brett Galloway, CEO, Airespace; Dan Simone, vice president product management, Trapeze Networks; Ron Seide, product manager at Cisco; and Ray Martino, vice president of marketing at Symbol Technologies will join in the discussion to close Tuesday's Wireless LAN debate.Wednesday, April 30Autonomic Computing: Vision to valueBeginning at 10 a.m. HP, IBM and Sun have talked up autonomic computing. But what is this promise of self-configuring, self-healing networks all about? This one-day workshop, developed by IBM's research division, is designed to provide some insight into how this approach can work in your network.Alan Ganek, vice president IBM Autonomic Computing, will talk about autonomic computing as a key way of advancing your IT infrastructure as systems become more complex and more difficult and expensive to manage. The idea behind autonomic computing is to keep systems up and running by letting them shift workloads and detect and respond to problems without human intervention.Ganek will demonstrate how this technology can help your network better support business processes and let you transform your network into an on-demand type of operation.Network storage protocols: The good, the bad and the ugly9 to 10 a.m. The Network Storage Strategies track will open with this session that will aim to make sense of the alphabet soup of storage interconnects. There is Fibre Channel, iSCSI, Fibre Channel over IP and Internet Fibre Channel Protocol, all of which can be used to move data within the storage architecture. Kevin Daly, CEO of Avamar Technologies, will look at standards work in progress with these protocols and will talk about how they can be applied within your storage network.Security technology report card10:15 to 11:15 a.m. Do you have the tools you need to protect your network from infiltrators? This session, which is part of the Internet Security - Reality or Myth track, will take a look at security technology available today. David Piscitello, president of Core Competence, moderates this discussion about the value of today's security tools. Speakers will include Paul V. Mockapetris, chief scientist at Nominum; and Dave Steele, an attorney at the law firm Christie, Parker & Hale.Adaptive management tools: Can you keep up with your environment?11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. With today's network environments changing at lightning speed, management software may have a hard time keeping up. After all, any management tool is only as good as the information it can collect, and in today's environments the data might be old by the time it can be processed. Rick Sturm, principal at Enterprise Management Associates and co-author of Network World's Network\/Systems Management newsletter, will preside over this discussion of adaptive management tools that quickly detect changes and react to them. Speakers will include Bill Merrow, senior vice president of development, Unicenter, at Computer Associates; Bill Emmett, solutions marketing manager at HP; Sandra Carter, vice president of marketing for Tivoli Software at IBM; and Charlie Boyle, director of N1 Architecture at Sun.IPSec: Wrestle with it, fix it or choose an alternative?2 to 3:15 p.m. Are VPNs on your road map, but you're still scratching your head over the best security to deploy? This session, part of the Internet Security - Reality or Myth track, might help you reach some decisions. David Piscitello, president of Core Competence, will lead this discussion about IP Security (IPSec), and protocols such as Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and TSL (Transport Layer Security) in VPN environments. Chris Hopen, CTO, Aventail; Joel Snyder, senior partner, Opus One; and Paul Hoffman, director of the VPN Consortium, will talk about the benefits of SSL\/TSL vs. IPSec.Networked storage and the future3:30 to 4:45 p.m. Where does networked storage fall on your to-do list? For many network managers, it's rising in priority. This session will look at what's ahead when it comes to putting storage online. Steve Sicola, vice president of network storage architecture at Seagate Technology, will talk about the future of data storage, what technologies are up and coming, what the hurdles are for technologies and where the whole networked storage effort is heading when it comes to security, management and scalability.Thursday, May 1Web application integration9 to 10 a.m. Web-based applications are likely gobbling up greater amounts of your network bandwidth. At the same time you might have questions such as how to troubleshoot problems associated with online applications, how to ensure they stay high-performing and how to avoid performance degradation on the network. Peter Sevcik, president of NetForecast, will take a broad look at how Web applications might affect your network. He'll help you figure out how to steel your network for the onslaught of application traffic..Net Server vs. Windows 2000: What's new and should I care?10:15 to 11:15 a.m. You're probably migrating from Windows NT to Windows 2000, if you haven't already. Next will be the move to Microsoft .Net. During this session, Eric Stal, a partner at EK&C Partners, will talk about what's new in .Net Server and how it might benefit your network. Stal also will look at the value of each new feature to help you figure out when the time will be right to move from Win 2000 to .Net.Port 80: Sum of all fears?11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Port 80 is the primary gateway for incoming and outgoing Web traffic. Is it also a wide-open door for threats to your network? Web services and Web-enabled applications result in heavy traffic through Port 80, and it's often difficult to tell what's OK and what's not. Stuart McClure, president and CTO of Foundstone, will talk about the top 10 vulnerabilities to your network as a result of the growing amount of content and application data flowing through Port 80. He'll also clue you in on common exploits of Port 80 and give you some hints on how to keep Port 80 trouble free.