Looking forward to #VMworld EMEA 2017

Having missed last years VMworld I feel very ready for attending the EMEA VMworld in Barcelona.

I almost felt annoyed about missing last year as the big announcements really caused a stir in the community and wider afield. (VMware on AWS) The announcements from the US VMworld this year were equally exciting so I am very keen to hear what else VMware has planned to reveal in a Barcelona.

I have put a good deal of effort into planning what I will be doing and attending to maximise my time there without burnout (Veterans I hear you laughing)

This will also be the first time I get to go officially for my employer Xtravirt (previous years I have been lucky enough to self fund etc).

My focus this year on sessions will be vRealize Operations, vRealize Automation, VMware on AWS and vSAN. Although where possible I also hope to cram in some NSX (Hands on Labs) as well.

Also this year I will get to finally meet my vROps Webinar Brother Sunny Dua, this is something I am looking forward to a great deal and we also plan to record a webinar while at the event so watch this space! Sadly Sunny will not be able to make it to Barcelona so I shall have to wait a little longer to meet. The next webinar has been scheduled though and there will be a guest!

Another first for me will be to attend the VMworld EMEA Hackathon on the Monday evening. Up until now I have never attended a hackathon although I am always told they are a enjoyable and a great source of learning so when I was told (er I mean encouraged) to attend by Sam McGeown I registered. I am looking forward to what promises to be a really fun event.

Aside from the social activities which are always a very high standard I am looking forward to visiting the solutions exchange and checking out the latest tech that the vendors have to offer.

Finally but not least I am really looking forward to meeting old and new faces in the vCommunity so if you are attending VMworld this year and want to say hi, ping me on twitter it would be great to meet.

In response to @h0bbel: The "vCommunity"

| 04/04/2015 | Tags: , , , , ,

This is not my normal sort of post – don’t worry, normal service will resume shortly.

I read Christian’s comments on the vCommunity – or lack of it – yesterday and although some things resonate with me, and a lot of other people, I don’t quite agree. I want to be clear this is a response to Christian and not an argument, I respect Christian as someone who does contribute to the vCommunity.

I think that there is a strong "vCommunity" – but I don’t think you will see much of it by following some twitter "superstars".

Christian says:

As clickbait replaces journalism, hyperbole and FUD seems to be replacing what used to be based on technical merit.

And this is something that I agree with…there are a lot of "big names" on twitter and on their blogs who are using their large audience to spread FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt). I’ve seen so many running battles over this kind of nonsense recently that I 100% understand why Christian would feel like he does.

As a side note to those working for vendors who engage in this online FUD/counter-FUD – for customer or an independent it leaves people feeling stone cold towards you and your product if your best marketing is to undermine the opposition. Either your product sells on its own merit, or it does not. Give your customers enough credit not to patronise them by engaging in this.

Christian points to Anthony Burke‘s post Remember your Technical Integrity – which again I agree with and would endorse. He also says

…changing your personality, well probably not as healthy. Also, it probably shows that your previous “personality” wasn’t real either. Again, not so healthy

Again, I agree with Christian.

Where I disagree with Christian is here:

we are not collectively working towards anything but our own self indulgence or self worth, or whatever might seem to be the best “move” at any given time

and here

I won’t kid myself into thinking that I can influence this trend in any way, shape or form

Let me explain why.

Let’s take for example the VMUGs – I know for a fact that the people who run the London and South West VMUGs are not doing it for themselves, for personal profile or for any other reason than to build a community. I know them personally and I they are not self promoting. They help people connect, they help people develop – and they don’t get paid for organising these events which take a lot of time and effort to produce. The awesome thing about VMUGs is that it’s in people’s common interest to be involved.

How about blogs? Well, true, some people do use their blogs to spread FUD, or counter-FUD and it’s ugly. Some blogs are about profile. But how many others are just about getting info out there? Take this blog you are reading right now – I have spent countless hours writing articles for this blog, hours of my own personal time. It’s not going to make me rich, it’s not going to make me famous. The number of people making money off of their tech blogs that exceeds the time they put into it, is very small.

Even on twitter there’s a lot to be said for the community – if I tweet out a question on the #vExpert or #VCDX tags I am almost guaranteed to get an answer from people trying to help. You could argue that it’s not altruistic, and they are just trying to prove what they know…but what do I care if they are? I asked for help, they helped me – for free. It’s true, you can’t say that ALL VCDXs, or ALL vExperts contribute in this way, but I’d be willing to bet that the majority do. I have just submitted for VCDX and I can testify to the number of current VCDXs who have helped – and there’s a decent study group of people, working together for

Finally, the question of influence. We all influence everything we are involved in just by being involved – it is our choice as to whether that influence is positive or negative. The old adage "don’t feed the trolls" can apply just as much to FUD – the more you respond with righteous indignation, the more people will see it. Give back to the community, go meet some awesome people at VMUGs, write a blog post that is just about the tech because it might help someone out in future. Contribute on twitter to helping people solve their problems – pay it forward!

I know the frustration that Christian feels, but I also know that he does contribute to the community in these ways – he’s helped me before and I hope that I’ve helped him at some point.

Thanks for reading – and for contributing to a great community.


#LonVMUG 15th May – another great VMUG!

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! (more…)