Hi Rob - yes it will be great meeting everyone. Should be both informative and fun.
Regarding installation issues, I won't be able to demonstrate much on this point as a server install of Recorder can be quite specific to a given situation, e.g. if you're working within the framework of a local authority, the SQL Server might need to be configuring in a certain way. Same for within a WT (like us); I've had to work closely with the Sussex WT's IT people in order to accommodate our server install. Because server installation can be much more complex than with previous versions (SQL Server is a complex beast), I think JNCC are recommending purchasing support with it, unless you have specialist IT staff or an IT department to rely on. I have found the standalone installations to be largely issue free.
Regarding user permissions - this is one of those issues that can come us, as described above. Do you have more details of the problem your IT people are having?
You only have to install the server version if you're installing onto a server and its clients. If you're installing a standalone workstation version (no server involved at all), you don't need to install the server version first. To clarify, there are two discs - the server and the standalone version. The server disc is for installing R6 onto a server and its clients (see Dave Cope's excellent post on installing R6), while the standalone disc is for installing on standalone non-networked workstations.
Regarding satellite users, don't forget that R6 can now transfer custodianship of records, so that users on remote non-networked machines can enter data and export it with a custodian transfer. This will then enable you to edit and 'own' the records. So you can have satellite users keying data without the fear of being locked out of your own records.
I'm sure we can have a good discussion at the workshop covering all of these issues with Hannah. I obviously can't say why certain decisions were made; everything I know is merely based on observation and use.