VMware Online Technology Forum on Now!

VMware Online Technology Forum has started…. are you attending?

Live presentations on all the new goodies from VMware – vSphere 6, vRealize Automation/Operations, virtual SAN 6, App Volumes, vCloud Air, EVO:Rail…….

If you can’t attend today, then the content will be made available on demand from tomorrow (16th April):

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VMware Partner Exchange on Tour 2013 – Reading

Wow…. it’s exactly a month since I last posted on my blog! Not good signs….. =P

TBH, I’ve been some-what busy with work, exams, training courses, webinars…… plus the last thing I’ve wanted to do after a long day at work is to log on and blog (which can be read “I’ve been lazy!”).

It’s been a busy month – finally got round to taking and passing the HP0-S35: Implementing HP BladeSystem Solutions exam for the course that I took last November (… procrastination…), so finally have my HP ATP – BladeSystem Solutions Integrator certification! Although I can’t actually check because my HP SmartPortal access has been revoked as HP have killed off anyone with access linked with 2e2! So I can’t even check my HP certs now! ¬_¬”

Also been busy trying to complete the training and certifications required to enable MTI to achieve the VMware competencies! Currently working my way through the Management Competency as I already have a few clients in place that we can submit as case studies (this will be MTI’s 4th competency out of the 6 key ones! Although we’re also eligible for Cloud IaaS).

Did quite a lot of delivery work the past month…. upgrading VMware environments to the latest and greatest…. showing clients the pitfalls of SSO and informing them to ‘get use’ to the new web-client.

Been also busy hosting a MTI Webinar on vCenter Operations Manager – what it is and what it can do to your business! Went well, loads of new leads and quite a number of clients are trialing the product. Should be hosting a technical webinar soon to ‘deep-dive’ into vCOPs! =)

Finally I’ve been very busy deploying several versions of SRM…… VMware SRM and EMC SRM….. =)

VMware SRM = Site Recovery Manager (http://www.vmware.com/products/site-recovery-manager)

EMC SRM = Storage Resource Management (http://uk.emc.com/data-center-management/storage-resource-management.htm)

What I don’t understand is why choose the same acronyms?!? Coming from a VMware background, I always think SRM is going to be Site Recovery Manager – and so will pretty much most of the market!! So why EMC had to call their new management suite SRM is beyond me!!

Anyways, it’s quite a powerful suite of products – consists of:

  • ProSphere (great for discovering end-to-end topology of your whole infrastructure…. as long as you set it up correctly! Twas a painful process),
  • Watch4Net (great dashboard which allows you to create custom reports with a ton of solution packs allowing you to connect to NetApp & EMC storage, Cisco MDS/Nexus, Brocade, VMware, etc…..)
  • Storage Configuration Advisor (great for compliancy – checking aginst EMC best practice as well as setting up other baselines that you can use to check your environment against)

The only issue is it’s really really expensive!! And not to mention a pain to setup and configure….. it would be much better when they finally put it all into one product! Also did I mention it is Stupidly expensive? I mean you’re looking at 5-6 figures!! When you consider products like EMC Storage Analytics or even VNX Monitoring & Reporting give you great functionality for monitoring and managing your EMC Storage for a couple hundred dollars, you really have to think twice when breaking open the chequebook for SRM! Anyways, EMC are trying to push us into selling this product…. but it’s just not priced for SMBs/Mid-markets…..!

Moving swiftly on….. today was VMware’s Partner Exchange on Tour 2013 @ Reading (http://www.partnerexchangeontour2013.com/reading), held at the Madjeski Stadium…… home to the recently relegated Reading FC! I thought it was ironic that the venue was the home of the Royals and that the theme of PEX was “Take Charge”….. Couldn’t help but think the theme came too late for Reading! No one really took charge of keeping them in the premiership last season! Lol….. =P

As always, some good sessions…… especially the keynote speech by Joe Baguley, describing the Software Defined Data Centre (SDDC) to be like ‘chicken farming’….. =)

TBH, the keynote was pretty similar to what was heard at VMware Forum 2013, although more cats/chickens in the story this time round…. plus a large african snail!

I found it interesting that VMware have now focused their strategy into 3 key areas:

  • Software Defined Data Centre
  • Hybrid Cloud
  • PC->Mobility

I vaguely remember that a year ago this who area was very wishy-washy with the terms End-User Computing, Application Transformation and Infrastructure Transformation….. tbh, those terms could mean anything!! Glad that they’ve now got some good headlines (and some focus) that us partners can build on!

At least this year the venue was decent….. last year it poured with rain and we all had to park on the grass at Wokefield Park….. suffice to say there was a lot of damage to the grass at the end of the day when people tried to drive off in their cars! (Like the huge skid marks I left trying to get my 3-series going – 19″ rims don’t offer much grip on soggy grass!!)

Over the past year at both 2e2 and MTI, I’ve been trying to push home my own thoughts at how a customer’s journey to the cloud should look like:

  • Adoption – starting the virtualisation journey.
  • Evolution/Optimisation – virtualising business critical apps, look into managing the virtual environment, SRM, vCOPs.
  • Revolution – private cloud.

It was nice to see a keynote slide that detailed a similar path that VMware see as the journey from server virtualisation to SDDC!

  1. Virtual Servers
  2. vSphere Operations Management (vCOPs)
  3. Software Defined Storage and Availability (SRM, VAAI/VASA, VDP)
  4. Virtual Networking and Security (VCNS, Nicira)
  5. Cloud Service Provisioning (vCD, vCAC)
  6. SDDC

Ok, so my idea was pretty much squashed into 3 steps and had fluffy marketing spin on the names, but my thought process was pretty similar…. quite chuffed that I was heading in the right direction as the bods at VMware.

Anyways, enough of an update…… roll on VMworld 2013…..!

Oh, and before I sign off….. I’ve finally succumbed and registered myself on Twitter….. my handle is @anthony_poh (https://twitter.com/anthony_poh)……. no idea what I’ll be tweeting….. I’m hoping it will be IT related, but it may end up descending into tweets of my random thoughts and moans! =P

Has the idea of Cloud-computing & IT Outsourcing been affected by the demise of 2e2?

I always find it interesting that the demise of 2e2 has lead to numerous articles popping up in the channel websites (like The Reg) about the downfalls of outsourcing and the need to have a ‘backup plan’ in place if your supplier goes bust….. =)

http://www.channelregister.co.uk/2013/04/26/2e2_channel_fallout/

http://www.channelregister.co.uk/2013/02/11/2e2_outsourcing_lessons/

I think we all have to agree that the collapse of 2e2 has affected how a lot of companies view cloud-computing and outsourcing….. where in the past many directors (C-board) were eager to offload their IT depts from their books, the whole fiasco of 2e2 and the real problem of accessing their data if something happens has really spooked the industry…..!

I can foresee that a lot of companies will now ensure there is an ‘exit-strategy’ in place before they dip their toes back into the cloud!

….. two steps forward, one step back for cloud in the UK!

 

On another note, VMware Forum 2013 was awesome! Learnt loads…… got loads of freebies (after all, that’s the real reason you go to expos right?!?)…. and caught up with loads of old mates! Roll on VMworld 2013!!!

vForum 2013

Just a quick blog before I hit the sack regarding an upcoming VMware event that some people may not have heard of….

VMware Forum 2013

http://www.vmwareforum2013.com

VMware run this FREE event across the world and it’s coming to London at Wembley Stadium on the 2nd May 2013. (There’s another in Manchester at Old Trafford – on the 22nd May).

It is predominantly aimed at End-users and IT professionals who are keen to learn how they can engage with VMware and what they can do with the VMware portfolio either to start their virtualisation journey or to expand their virtual environment.

The agenda this year will be focusing on 3 key areas:

Cloud Computing – this will be focused around the vCloud Suite of products and how VMware envisage a ‘software defined datacenter’.

Virtualization – with the majority of clients having an idea of what virtualisation is about, this looks to be focusing on virtualising business critical/tier-1 applications as well as managing/monitoring an users virtual environment.

Mobility – this is pretty much End User Computing focusing on the new Horizon Suite and how it will affect VDI.

Whilst I would love to go to the event, it’s pretty much a non-partner event (i.e. VMware Partners – like my company MTI – are not really invited!). So if you’re interested in finding out more about VMware and how to introduce it into your IT environment….. register NOW and head down to Wembley! =)

Right… off to bed…. got an early start as  I’m heading down to an EMC VSPEX event organised by MTI at the London Transport Museum…. should be interesting stuff! (http://ecommunication.mti.com/acton/rif/1192/e-0481-1302/-/l-tst:30/l-tst/showPreparedMessage)