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VMworld 2011 Thus Far August 31, 2011

Posted by audiomatron in Uncategorized.
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Oh, where do I begin? There has been so much to do and see here that it has been somewhat overwhelming. Since this blog is about my virtualization journey, what follows will be sort of a run-down of my experience thus far.

Best sessions so far

When I first signed up for VMworld 2011, it was my intention to attend as many sessions as possible. However, I have quickly come to realize that it is better to be selective as to which sessions I attend, allowing me to participate in more of the social aspects of the conference. In many cases, this proves to be more helpful than the sessions, since you can engage your fellow conference goers regarding what they are doing in their environments. Plus, several of the sessions I have forgone are sessions on general information (for example, right now I am skipping the “what’s new in vSphere 5” session – I already know what’s new, so I’ll blog instead). Nonetheless, the sessions I have attended thus far have been very informative and entertaining. Here are a few:

The ESXi quiz show

This was a game show which pitted two teams of vExperts against each other, eventually pitting the winner against a team of VMware employees. All of the participants are well recognized figures in the virtualization community. This session proved to be entertaining and informative as I, an audience member, racked my brain to answer the questions myself. There was plenty of humor and smack talking, and it was comforting to see some of these guys getting the questions wrong (even winning the occasional “worst possible answer” award).

Myth busters goes virtual

I will have to say this has been the most informative session I have attended. There was really more than meets the eye on this one. The presenters, Eric Sloof and Mattias Sundling gave an excellent and truly educational presentation, dispelling several commonly held myths surrounding VMware best practices. The topics discussed were whether change block tracking overhead affects performance, proper use of resource pools, raw device mapping vs. VMDK on VMS, and paravirtual SCSI controller vs LSI SCSI. The presenters not only dispelled the myths regarding these topics, but gave very in depth and very clear explanations about how these technologies work. This should have been a must see for anyone attending VMworld.

The Dell Tech Center User Group

This was not nessecarily a session, but rather an event external to VMworld. A friend of mine suggested this event to me since I run an all Dell shop, and am quite enthusiastic about Dell products. This turned out to be a very worthwhile event to attend. The DTCUG-IO, as it was called was a gathering of the Dell Tech Center community, and included food, drink, and an incredible lineup of speakers. The presentations, from speakers who’s names elude me at present (I will have to refer to twitter to recall them, but twitter is being stupid right now), were on topics including Oracle on VMware, the vSphere storage appliance, the Dell vSphere plugin, and a very cool demonstration in which an app in a private cloud on a laptop was migrated to the public cloud right before our eyes. It was quite a journey to get to the event, but it was well worth it.

The Keynotes

I attended both of the keynotes this year. On Monday, the keynote was from Paul Maritz which involved some forward looking statements regarding the future of IT and cloud computing. Monday’s keynote ended with leaders from large enterprises such as Southwest Airlines,Revlon, and NYSE discussing how VMware has revolutionized the way they do business. There was much talk in both general sessions surrounding cloud computing and the post PC era, and the focus was on moving from managing devices to managing users. These were very eye opening, and even provided me with a glimpse of how I might leverage some of these technologies to change the way my company uses IT.

Conclusion

There is much more to write about, but if I do that, I’ll be here all day writing. Hopefully I will be able to take some photos and do a photo blog post. For now though, tell me, what have you been up to at VMworld?

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