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VMworld 2014 – Day 2 Recap

VMworld 2014 – Day 2 Recap

Figured I’d give you guys a run down on things at VMworld already this week. This year is my 4th VMworld running and I have enjoyed every one of them.

Conference:

Although there were a bunch of community driven events yesterday, today was the “official” first day of the conference and with it brought the conferences main general session. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s generally when VMware announces the big stuff: the new features, the new products, and changes to existing offerings. Unfortunately, none of the announcements were ground breaking and the session, overall, was pretty boring in my opinion. The announcement of vSphere 6.0 Beta, VSAN 2.0 Beta, and renaming of existing products highlighted the morning, things that the community has been discussing for months now. However, one cool announcement they did bring forth was VMware EVO: Rail which is VMware’s version of the hyper-converged, Nutanix-like appliance. It’s a turn-key product meant to be deployed for smaller business or remote office deployments.

Vendors:

VMworld is the perfect opportunity to discover and explore new technologies as well as speak to various vendors, old and new. I used the opportunity to do both, speak with some of our current vendors and concerns we’re running into as well as discover what other offerings they have which could benefit our infrastructure. I was also able to visit new (to me) vendors which offer products that would satisfy areas that we’re looking to improve in. A few of these include:

–          Eaton: Spoke to them about their PDUs vs TrippLite which we’ve been using. Their software and monitoring software looks awesome and can be integrated directly into the vCenter web client if desired. They also have, which I was really impressed with, built it locking mechanisms in their PDUs to prevent cables from accidentally being pulled out when working in the racks.  (I’m a stickler for neat and proper cabling).

–          F5 – Spoke to F5 regarding our some of our issues from a recent migration to using iApps and they stated the newest firmware versions included the options we’re looking for. As our environment is 100% virtualized, I also inquired about deploying virtual F5 appliances rather than the physical ones we have now – of course there is a license cost in doing so.

–          Thycotic – Spoke to these guys about their offerings for Password Management application. It manages passwords for items such as service accounts and gives us the ability to share certain passwords with groups of your choice. The other thing it can do, which I think is even more valuable, is automate the changing of the local admin passwords across laptops & servers. As you know, having the same local admin passwords throughout the org is a very bad thing and this software can manage it for you. It can automate with tons of products like AD, Local Accounts, SQL, VMware, Cisco, HP iLo, Dell DRAC, and others.

–           Palo Alto – Spoke with Palo Alto about our current deployments and how we can better utilize their feature set and security services to better protect our infrastructure and users. Looking forward to implementing some of the items we discussed.

Outside of that, I spent the rest of the day networking with other attendees including folks I talk to via Twitter and in the Louisville area, attending a couple of performance sessions, and getting swag from random vendors 🙂 Also attended a few vBrownBag sessions – community driven talks about everything from networking to new products to reactions to the day’s events. Made a quick run over to the VMware Certification Lounge as well.

Goals for the week:

  • Attend sessions for security, performance, best practices, and vSphere design (VAP-DCD stuff) as well as a few relating to deploying SQL on VMware.
  • Learn more about newly announced products sure as EVO & vVols.
  • Continue networking and meeting new people.

About The Author

Bryan Krausen

Bryan Krausen is currently working as a Technical Architect with experience in a vast number of platforms.

Bryan has been active within the VMware vExpert community for several years and is the leader of the Louisville VMware User Group (VMUG) and Louisville AWS User Group.

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