My session featured no kittens or puppies

The VMware User Groups provide a fantastic opportunity to rub shoulders with VMware technology enthusiasts. Whether you’re running the latest, the previous or perhaps even the unsupported versions of their products there’s always someone to share a story with. You’ll typically find breakout sessions available overviewing products, providing troubleshooting guidance or demonstrations of new features. Occasionally there’s an opportunity to ask questions of a roundtable panel of almost any virtualisation topic whether it is product or industry trend related. These events aren’t just UK based either, have a look on the to see where your nearest meeting is.

This week it was the turn of the London VMUG and while based in the city it pulls in attendees from all over the country. It’s a slick operation run by Alaric Davies, Stuart Thompson, Simon Gallagher & Jane Rimmer. I rattled off a 15 minute lightning talk entitled Surprising Replication Machine, where I focussed specifically on VMware’s vSphere Replication and how it could be used to migrate data centres opposed to being treated just as Disaster Recovery tool. Gregg Robertson co-presented with Craig Kilborn overviewing the learning path and upfront work required for the VCDX Programme. Based on their recent experiences they fired out facts and figures of the number of hours, lab time, review cycles and openly admitted how much of their personal time had been swallowed up – and the impacts to home life. Many questions were asked and frantic note taking made by some.

Technical deep-dive sessions were provided by Frank Buecshel delving into SSL Certificates and their usage in vSphere and later in the day discussing SSO Architecture, Deployment & Common Issues. Having attended the first of his sessions it was apparent that his role within VMware as an Escalation Engineer had exposed him to many complex issues to resolve. The vCAC Real World deployment session presented by Simon Gallagher later in the day opened up good discussion from the floor as he ran through the deployment aspects and gotchas, pre-requisites and un-documented configuration requirements (of which there were many). The room was full, people were either standing or sitting on the floor –  it was clearly a hot topic for the attendees.

There were many other sessions available throughout the day. The sponsors themselves are able to showcase their products and present their use-cases and market prowess. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend every session but hopefully you’ll understand there’s something for everyone, whether you’re deep into a deployment and want to learn more, or fascinated about a new product.

At the close of the day prize draws were made, hands shaken and with business cards exchanged it was time to head to vBeers, sponsored by PernixData. The majority of the attendees took to foot and made their way to a local pub to talk more tech and continue networking.

The lides are available for download if you’re interested to see them. Surprising Replication Machine  |  VCDX Application – What Does It Take?


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