Thursday, September 15, 2011

VMworld 2011 Trip Report

I'm an engineer at VMware and sometimes get to know about things that we are working on before they come out, it is great to see how it all comes together.  That happened for me this year at VMworld.

I think that Steve Herrod's keynote really did the best job of showing where this is all going.  The scenario of the new insurance claims adjuster worked really well. If you are only going to watch one session from VMworld - this would the one I would recommend.

I have a specific interest in the new vSphere Storage Appliance (VSA) and it was great to see it covered in both keynotes.  The VSA session that I presented with the VSA product manager went really well and we had some great discussion and Q and A after the session.  The official tally was 451 people and I didn't really see many leave during the session, and nobody threw anything at us!  VSA is a great feature to bring shared storage to small environments that previously couldn't afford it or lacked the technical ability to install and configure it.  A whitepaper is in the works and I will post more on VSA in the future.

The million IOPS on a single vSphere 5 hosts gots lots of coverage.  It's really cool to see the hero numbers that Chethan produces and he did a great job working with EMC on this number.  They were able to get to 1 million IOPS very quickly because they really didn't have to do any tweaking or tunning.  They just had to get the server and the storage needed to support 1 million IOPS in place, then get the VMs setup, and run through the series of tests.  No benchmark special settings required.

I was invited to speak at the Dell TechCenter Users Group meeting that happened on Tues night over at the Wynn.  I gave a 15 minute strictly technical overview of VSA and had a great time getting to see many of my twitter friends there.  I heard that there was some video of the event.

I attended sessions throughout the week, and all of them were pretty good.  There were a couple that really stood out.  Chad Sakac gave a great session on all of the new things that EMC was doing with vSphere 5 to enable new features and better performance.  He also presented part of EMC's super session and covered lots of ground including the new vCloud Data Director Database as a Service.  Chad is a great presenter and I would recommend that you catch his sessions when possible.  In particular he has this great ability to use recorded video demos and make you almost think it is a live demo.  He really has great energy and passion and it comes across in his sessions.  He practically got a standing ovation at the end (or maybe people were just trying to get to lunch, hard to tell with geeks).

The most important part of the show is getting to meet and talk with so many people from around the industry.   There were lots of people that I only see once at year - at VMworld.  It was great to see and talk to everybody. I can't wait until next year.


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