VMworld Europe 2009 Wednesday

February 25th, 2009 by jason Leave a reply »

I need to make this quick because it’s 3:25am and I risk not waking up for my sessions tomorrow in four hours.

It has been a whirlwind of a day. I arrived at the conference and found out by word of mouth VMware had announced their list of vExpert recipients. I was one of 300 people on the planet chosen as a vExpert based on various contributions I’ve made to the VMware virtualization community including forum activity over the years, evangelism through blogging, podcasting, VMUG leader, etc. I can proudly display the silver vExpert logo on my blog. This is a nice gesture from VMware to recognize people in the community that have given much of themselves to promote a product that they believe in and help shape the future of our planet.

I attended some good sessions. Yesterday I learned about VMware vCenter Chargeback. It’s features seem fairly consistent with other chargeback solutions I’ve tested. Still not much automated help for estimating VM infrastructure and operational costs prior to VM deployment for new servers/applications/workloads but when I asked about this during Q&A, the speaker assured me this would be coming in future versions. vCenter Chargeback is also going to add an additional database to vCenter. For those with vCenter and Update Manager, we’re now up to three separate databases. The chargeback database has to be pretty simple – I don’t understand why additional tables can’t be created in the vCenter database for chargeback eliminating the need for an additional database. Where I get nervous about databases is during vCenter upgrades and the additional time and effort required to repair or back out from a failed database upgrade.

I attended a few more good sessions today. Most notably TA15 Protecting your vCenter Server using vCenter Heartbeat and LAB11 VMware VI Toolkit for Windows (PowerShell) where I was assisted by none other than Carter Shanklin whom many might recognize from Twitter. Carter also delivered a knockout session which I hear is currently ranked #1 among all sessions. In the past, it wasn’t a show stopper for the virtual infrastructure if VirtualCenter was down for a brief to moderately extended period of time. With all of the components announced recently that tie into vCenter Server, the importance of vCenter Server uptime (and vSphere as a whole) has increased exponentially. vCenter Server is evolving into an enterprise application requiring 99.9999% uptime. The additional moving parts will introduce increased complexity and potentially new operational and support standards for vSphere. Our models will need to be adapted to fit the uptime requirements of vSphere.

DSC00677The second VMTN: Ask the Experts session was held today. We had more people in the community lounge than yesterday but still not many visitors who were looking for assistance with VMware virutalization. I was pulled away by Jessica, a Systems Engineer with VMware, along with a camera crew to give an interview on vExpert along with some general chit chat about the show. That interview will be posted on vmworld.com.

DSC00711Moving along into the evening, I attended the VMworld party which started at 20:00. It was a great time. To the left, that’s Mike Laverick walking through the entrance with his video camera in tow. There was live music including two women who kicked things off with some techno violin. I thought the food was pretty good and there was quite a variety. The presentation of the food was also interesting as you will see from the photos below. The man at the bar in the brown jacket with his back turned to me is none other than Jonathan Reeve of Hyper9.

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DSC00738I was the lucky recipient of a Flip Video mino HD from Tripwire.

This is a slick little video recording device which records up to 1 hour of HD video and sound on internal memory.

I hung out with a lot friends and talked with some interesting people like Brian Madden who always has interesting stories to tell.

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DSC00745The story behind this picture is that while waiting in line to get into the party, I buried five Euros worth of coins in this hot candle wax 1/2 inch deep along with a few US coins. The experiment was to see if anyone would dig them out after the candle wax had dried. When we left the party, all the Euro coins were gone. Someone later took them out of the hot wax and peeled the wax shavings off which were found on the ground. They left the US coins and my card.

The VMworld party ended at midnight and some of us walked down the strip to a small techno bar that was jam packed. There was a live DJ, dancing, drinking, and making out. Like the Veeam boat party the other night, I ran into Tarry Singh, Strategic Business Consultant: Data Center (Cloud Computing, Virtualization). Tarry is funny as hell and that guy can definitely cut a rug. I’ve got a lot of video footage from tonight but cannot post any due to very poor upload speeds from the hotel.

It’s late and the Hyper9 alien and I are tired. Goodnight.



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  1. Sven says:

    That was one heck of an awesome party. Too bad that we’ll need to wait so long for Copenhagen. Question: did you ever find out what the two violin-playing ladies (ahum) were called? I googled my butt off trying to find something on them – they were great, so I’d love to use some of their music when finally putting some footage of the entire event up. Any ideas?