Brussels / 3 & 4 February 2024


Switching the FOSDEM conference management system to pretalx

For FOSDEM 2011 until 2023, pentabarf was used as the conference management system for FOSDEM. Unfortunately development of pentabarf stopped more or less the year before that which meant that FOSDEM was run on hardly maintained software for many years.

Different attempts at switching to another conference management system failed, but for the 2024 edition we decided to switch to pretalx.

But the scale of FOSDEM is quite different from other conferences which means that adjustments had to be made: not many conferences have 60 tracks maintained by different people and over 1700 submitted talks.

This lightning talk will highlight how the system works, custom changes that were made and how I ended up spamming some FOSDEM speakers. But also things we would like to change for 2025 and we loved about pentabarf and how you can help. Also an invitation for users to join and give some feedback during the talk or afterwards in the hallways.


Photo of Johan Van de Wauw Johan Van de Wauw