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8Jun/14Off

Another fantastic South West UK VMUG

Posted by Simon Eady

vmug_logoOn the 3rd of June we had our second South West UK VMUG and I am pleased to say it went superbly well.

As before we held it at the Mshed facilities in Bristol.

We had a great day with many sessions from sponsors,vendors and community speakers alike!

Big thanks go to our speakers that day who were..

One of the South West UK VMUG leaders Barry Coombs took a fantastic time lapse video of the day which can be viewed on his blog site.

Here are a few shots from the day

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28May/14Off

Book Review: Learning Veeam Backup and Replication for VMware vSphere

Posted by Sam McGeown

I was recently sent a copy of Christian Mohn's new book "Learning Veeam Backup and Replication for VMware vSphere" to review, and as ever this is my honest opinion of this book. I am not receiving anything other than the copy of the book for this review. I don't work for a vendor, so I have no axe to grind!

Content

The book starts of with explanations of basic backup strategies and explains principals like Grandfather-Father-Son media rotation and RPO/RTOs. From there it dives into the architecture of Veeam BR and its components. The remainder of chapter 1 covers a walk through of the installation of the product.

Chapter 2 covers the configuration of backups, and gives some background into the different types of backups within Veeam, their drawbacks, and how Veeam have addressed them. For example solving the problem of having to combine incremental backups with the last full, which Veeam solve with synthetic full backups. The chapter also covers backup proxies, and configuring backup jobs, copying to tape or remote repository, and the WAN accelerator.

The next chapter walks through performing restores with Veeam, including full VMs, VM files (like a vmx) and VMDKs, and guest OS files.

Chapter 4 covers the replication part of Veeam Backup and Replication, and after explaining the differences between backup and replication it covers the infrastructure required before stepping through the set-up of a replication job. It also covers the process for fail over and fail-back, and here is one example of where I'd like to see some comparison - e.g. with VMware's SRM, which has a similar feature set.

The fifth and final chapter covers some of the more unique features of Veeam's offering, and I thought it provided a good explanation of those features - here is where I think walk through of setup/config would be most valuable, but it reads more as a feature list than a learning guide.

Summary

I found the writing style easy to read and I thought it flowed quite well throughout the book - this is always impressive when the author's first language isn't English.

I did find that I had to keep reminding myself that the book is specifically written about a single product rather than a more agnostic approach - I felt it read more like a vendor produced document. Personally, I would have liked some comparison with other well-known backup products to ground it a little and perhaps some more real-world explanations to distinguish it from vendor install documentation.

Perhaps that's a little unfair as the book is specifically about that one product, and there is added value in the explanations provided. The introduction specifically states that it's aimed at "vSphere administrators looking for an introduction to Veeam Backup & Replication v7 for VMware" and it definitely does provide that.

Learning Veeam Backup and Replication for VMware vSphere is available on Amazon and Packt

 

19May/14Off

Blogger briefing with Satyam Vaghani – PernixData

Posted by Simon Eady

Recently I had the good fortune to be invited along to a blogger briefing with Satyam Vaghani CTO and Co-founder of PernixData.satyamvaghani-304

Those of you not in the know Satyam already has quite the track record, more notably for authoring 50+ patents, Principle engineer and Storage CTO for VMware (10 years). So it is safe to say he knows a thing or two about storage and related technology!

Nine of us (bloggers) were in attendance. (@dawoo @Archie_Hendryx @Craig_Kilborn @GreggRobertson5 @dellock6 @egrigson @julian_wood @simoneady @virtualisedgeek)

At the time of meeting Satyam, PernixData was 2 years and 2 months old and already has had a large impact on the storage industry.

FVP was of course at the forefront of discussion and how it stands unique in the  storage market place by providing clustered read and write acceleration of any shared storage.

Satyam was very clear, he believes customers should be less focused on renewing/replacing your shared storage in an effort to maintain or improve existing performance but rather focus on simply increasing the overall shared storage capacity and scale out your caching system (clustered flash) to deliver that consistent predictable high performance applications and end users demand and expect. He also highlighted how right now the storage industry has never been more fluid, after 20 years of predictable changes and advances the emergence of SSD and flash has turned the industry upside down. Flash based technologies have already been proven to exceed the performance limitations of well known products like SQL Server where the code is now having to be reviewed to take advantage of the new speeds available.

16May/14Off

#LonVMUG 15th May – another great VMUG!

Posted by Sam McGeown

VMware User GroupYesterday saw another fantastic London VMUG with lots of quality sessions and opportunities to network with peers and friends. The committee seem to do a fantastic job every time and this one was no exception, so thanks to Alaric Davies, Jane Rimmer, Stuart Thompson and Simon Gallagher!

One of the best things for me about the VMUG is the chance to chat with some of the smartest and most influential people in the VMware world – a trip to the coffee table provided a great opportunity to “chew the vfat” with two of the VMUG's biggest characters, Mike Laverick and Ricky El-Qasem – all before any sessions had started.

The first session of the day, after the obligatory coffee and biscuits, was presented by Itzik Reich of EMC’s ExtremIO talking about the all-flash offering. For a non-native English speaker I was thoroughly impressed with how he engaged with the audience and spoke. My main take-away was that you can’t treat flash in the same way as magnetic disk – it’s not just a faster version of the traditional spinning platter but requires a whole new approach as to how it’s used and managed. That may sound obvious but I think a lot of solutions treat flash as such, imposing magnetic disk concepts like RAID which don’t make the best use. Flash != magnetic disk, don’t treat it the same!

8May/14Off

Online VMware Forum – my thoughts

Posted by Simon Eady

VMware Online ForumThis was the second online event I have attended in the last few months, the first being the VMUG Virtual event back in January. One of the aspects I enjoyed the most about that event was being able to chat  to many well known and familiar faces from the wider community.

In this recent event there was a lot of focus on the various offerings from VMware  with a good deal of focus on VSAN, NSX, Horizon and vCHS but certainly not neglecting their other offerings.

The live video streams were great and even offered audio translations as they took place.

I really did like the way the website is laid out to give it that intended virtual conference feel.

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