Dell World 2015 Recap

As I sit here in my hotel room waiting to see what FIA’s decision will be for the Saturday portion of the US Grand Prix weekend it seemed a good time to collect my thoughts from Dell World. Coming into the week there was seemingly more questions than answers concerning the Dell acquisition of EMC along with a fair amount of uncertainty. Chief among the questions was that of the cultural differences between the organizations. From talks with different executives, the plan is to have overarching goals and expectations of how to conduct business but otherwise embrace the differences that make each group unique; with their earlier acquisitions Dell tried to force a culture change and found it often did not work well for any parties. Another common question regards the overlap in product offering, to which Dell repeatedly expressed a commitment to all existing product lines. Ultimately there will be some changes made, but nothing beyond improving logistics chains looks likely for the short to mid term. The consistency and clarity in message from every exec I spoke with or heard at keynotes should be of relief to current customers of both companies.

In terms of OEM partnerships with the likes of Nutanix, Simplivity, SolidFire, etc. again the message was one of nothing changing in the foreseeable future from Dell’s perspective. Toward this Dell announced three new XC nodes, the high density XC6320, and all flash XC630-10F and XC6320-6F. Additionally they announced the new SC9000 controllers for Compellent arrays featuring 12Gb FC interconnects, greater memory, and a new 6.7 release of SCOS that offers enhanced data compression allowing accessible frozen blocks to be compressed resulting in greater efficiency.

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”]

SCOS-67-Compression1

Compression Support Matrix

[/fusion_builder_column][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”]

SCOS-67-Compression2

SCOS 6.5 – 6.6 Compression Example

[/fusion_builder_column][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”]

SCOS-67-Compression3

SCOS 6.7 Compression Example

To negate performance impacts there are CPU cores dedicated to compression operations. A feature sure to appeal to customers migrating from EqualLogic to Compellent is the ability to import volumes to ease the transition.

Other new hardware announced includes the DSS 7000, 1500, 1510, and 2500 systems designed specifically to meet the needs of telecom, oil & gas, hosting providers and research organizations. To help you get these systems setup Dell now has a ProDeploy offering to help with the rack, stack and cabling for customers of every size. These deployment services to me looks to slot nicely between the existing consulting and ProSupport offerings in Dell’s portfolio.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

How to survive Dell World

Reposted from Dell PowerMore.

——————————

I’m no stranger to the business conference life — spending hours in panels, breakout sessions, networking with industry folks and listening to keynotes. Over the years, I’ve gained a lot by actively listening, bouncing ideas off people I’ve never met before and checking out new products.

For the past three years, I’ve had a really great time attending Dell World. This year I’m excited to hear about how the company is doing after being private for two years — how it has impacted products and technologies that are in development. I anticipate the usual announcements around 14th-generation servers, updated desktops and laptops all making use of the latest CPU offerings Intel has released. I’m really interested to hear how that will impact the business in the future. Clearly, this year’s Dell World will be action-packed.

If this is your first Dell World, there are a couple things you should know before you head to Austin. I’d like to share some tips for how to make the most of the three-day event based on my experiences attending the last three years.

1. Don’t overbook your schedule.

One of the mistakes I’ve made in the past was trying to cram in every possible session. It’s OK to miss some of them — many are recorded and livestreamed. And you can go back to these sessions weeks later in case you’d like to revisit the action. Plan a bit, but try to go with the flow each day. Go to the sessions that you’re most excited about. As a first-time attendee, I highly recommend going to the opening and closing keynotes — seeing Michael Dell on stage is an experience you won’t want to miss. Same goes for hearing John Mayerbreak out into one of his spontaneous jam sessions. Don’t feel obligated, though, to sit through every single session at Dell World. Because you can replay those later, but you can’t replay the conversations you have with people you’ve never met. This leads me to my next tip.

2. Give and you shall receive.

As an engineer, I’ve gained a lot from giving feedback on products at Dell World. I’ve enjoyed participating in user-interface feedback testing sessions, where I’ve had the chance to share my thoughts on how to better products that are in development. A few years ago, I gave my opinion on the usability of a few of Dell’s EqualLogic products, when they were in the early design stages. We’ve been using EqualLogic for the past seven years, and I’ve seen the impact of some of my feedback as the user experience has improved. I recommend that everyone at Dell World tests out the products they use — being involved in these sessions makes you feel like you’re giving back to the rest of the community.

3. Network. Really network.

Sure, everyone knows to network at conferences like Dell World. Not everyone does it the right way, though. Now I’m no networking expert, but in my experience, you want to go further than having surface-level conversations. For me, what that means is talking to people in similar roles about the systems they work on, problems they’ve encountered and how they’ve resolved these issues. I’ve helped others fix issues and they’ve helped me see my own missteps. As a community, let’s come together to problem solve and share our wins.

4. Prep your social media presence.

Before you arrive at Dell World, make yourself visible online. Give yourself a social media makeover. First, set your avatar on Facebook, Twitter and other platforms to a recent photo of yourself. Then familiarize yourself with official (and community-created) event hashtags. Throughout the conference, post tweets and Facebook updates in real time, with quotes from speakers and people you meet. Upload photos and videos on platforms such as Periscope and Instagram. Really become part of the online conversation. And if you see someone you recognize from social media, go up to them and introduce yourself politely. No matter how prominent you are in the tech community or within Dell, we’re all people, so let’s be polite and friendly.

5. Don’t be shy!

Don’t be afraid to introduce yourself to people you’ve never met. As long as the person isn’t engaged in a conversation already, waltz up to them and say hello. Often, people who attend Dell World don’t know too many other attendees. And it’s good to branch out from the people you know if you do go with colleagues. So we’re all in the same boat. I always try to have a few meals with people I’ve never met before, and my goal is usually to talk to five new people each day. By approaching the conference this way, you can gain some invaluable contacts, (and friends of course).

Have a wonderful time at Dell World! Looking forward to seeing you there.

Dell World 2015: Day One – Product Design and The Future Workforce

Day one of Dell World kicked off with press sessions on the thinking and research that influences Dell’s product design, and the future of the work force. The overarching goals of consistency in UI and UX, and converging consumer products with their enterprise/commercial brethren starts early on in Dell’s design studios. To encourage ‘synergy’ between teams an open office layout is used, and sharing of design language along with materials knowledge is pushed. The desire with this is that if a customer has familiarity with one Dell product that they will be able to quickly and easily know how to work with a new product or one from a different line. This can be seen now in the EqualLogic, M1000e, and FX2 management consoles. One area it very much falls apart, and is an acknowledged pain point, is Dell’s online presence which is the subject of an ongoing usability study and redesign.

Where the two sessions start to mesh is with the XPS line of products, which Dell envisions as the converging point of consumer desires and enterprise demands. Toward that Dell has their design teams located across EMEA and the US, pulling talent from diverse disciplines to meet the expectations of customers. A key driver in this convergence of product lines is the rapid advancement in materials and component packaging allowing for thin and light weight devices that still retain excellent ergonomics.

When looking at the future work force, despite all the media driven hype of millennials shaking things up, research actually shows that their desires for flexibility in location and time to work extends across the generational ‘gap’. The keys to companies being successful moving forward center around diversity, recognizing employees as individuals, flexibility and proper management.

Stats…
May 2015, millennials (18-34 years old) become largest segment of the work force.
64% of employees do some amount of work from home.
One in four millennials would consider a new job if it offered what they perceived as better technology.

vBrainstorm at Dell World 2015

With the euphoria of VMworld 2015 still fresh, we are pleased to announce that vBrainstorm will be at Dell World 2015 in Austin, Texas October 20-22.  For the fourth year Dell has graciously extended invitations to members of the Dell TechCenter Rockstar community affording them the opportunity to attend with press/blogger credentials.

This will be my fourth time to attend and it has been interesting to watch the event grow and mature a little more each year, and become the launching point for Dell’s new hardware, software and service offerings.  Last year the new FX2 blade platform and XC hyper-converged partnership with Nutanix were huge hits among attendees, while the DCS XA90 (spec sheet) seemed to slip in under the radar during a big data segment in a keynote.

For this year, I anticipate the usual announcements around 14th generation servers, updated desktops and laptops all making use of the latest CPU offerings Intel has released.  Beyond this I hope that the fruits of being private for two years, and the ability to more readily integrate the technologies gained through acquisitions of the last decade, start to see the light of day.  Dell has hinted at things, and shown NDA roadmaps, but now is the time to start delivering on the promise of moving faster without Wall Street breathing down their necks.

Introducing Altaro VM Backup

Altaro is introducing a new version of their backup software that now adds support for VMware. The previous version was called Altaro Hyper-V Backup. The name change reflects support for backing up VMs regardless of Hyper-V or VMware. I had the opportunity to Beta test the new version and I wanted to share with you the results of my testing.

First things first, what do I install the Altaro software on? It has to be installed on one of the following operating systems:

• Windows 2008 R2
• Windows Server 2012
• Windows Server 2012 R2
• Windows 7 (64-Bit)
• Windows 8 (64-Bit)
• Windows 10 (64-Bit)

In my lab environment I had access to a Windows 2008 R2 system so that is what I installed it to.
Here are the versions of VMware that are supported in this new version:

Versions of VMware supported:
• VMware vSphere 5.0, 5.1, 5.5 and 6.0
• VMware vCenter 5.0, 5.1, 5.5 and 6.0
• VMware ESXi 5.0, 5.1, 5.5 and 6.0

In our lab we are running 6.0. All the prerequisites have been met. The installation of the Altaro software is very simple. Accept license agreement, tell it what path you want to install it and click Install. Like I said, simple!

After the software is installed, fire it up. You will be presented with the screen below:

Altaro (1)

Since this is the Altaro instance that I want, I will choose this machine and click Connect. This will send you to the dashboard. Now you need to add your VMware hosts. To do this, click on Setup > Hosts and click the Add Host button to get the wizard below.

Altaro (2)

I have a vCenter server in my lab so I am going to click on that option.

Altaro (3)

Enter your vCenter server name and admin username and password. Click Test Connection to make sure your credentials are working properly and then click Next. You will be presented with the hosts that the vCenter instance knows about.

Altaro (4)

Click Finish and the hosts will be added.

Next we need to setup our backup location. This can be a local drive on the Altaro server or a network path. For my lab test I am using a local drive on the Altaro server. To add the backup location, go to Setup > Backup Locations and click the Add Backup Location button.

Altaro (5)

I am going to click Physical Drive and click next and choose my D drive. I can specify a folder if I want the backups to always go into a certain folder. Once I have decided I just click finish and the backup location is set.

Now let’s setup a VM for this backup location. While I am on the Backup location screen there is an inventory view of all the VMs known to Altaro as shown below.

Altaro (6)

To assign VMs to my D drive backup location, I just select the VMs on the left and drag them over to the D drive.  I am going to set TTYLinux to this location.

Altaro (7)

As you can see in the shot above TTYLinux will now use D as its backup location.  Click SAVE CHANGES at bottom right to save these changes.  If you forget to do this, the software will remind you.

Now let’s setup a backup schedule.  To do this go to Setup > Schedules.

There are 2 default backup schedules already set:  M-F at 10 PM and Sa-Su and 10 PM.  I am going to use the Sa-Su 8 PM backup schedule.  To do it, you just drag and drop the VMs to assign to that schedule.  Click SAVE CHANGES to save it.

That is the basics of setting up Altaro for backing up VMware VMs.  I will now cover a few other options of interest, the first one being Backup Retention.

To view the default options for backup retention, go to Setup > Retention Policy.

Altaro (8)

By default you will see the following retention policies:  Never delete, 2 weeks, 1 month and 6 months.  These are default policies for local and Offsite copies.  You can create your own as well.  You simply drag and drop the VMs to the proper retention policies that you need and click SAVE CHANGES.

You can take a backup at any time by going to Virtual Machines > Take Backup

Altaro (9)

Just click the machine you want to backup and click the red TAKE BACKUP button.  I already did that and you can see in the screenshot that a backup is running for TTYLinux.

Restore options are what you would expect from backup software.  You can do a full restore or a granular restore, which in Altaro’s case is file level restore or Exchange Item Level Restore.

There is also a Sandbox and Verification option so you can mount backups in a sandbox to test restores.  I will show you a full restore in the sandbox so I can power a backup on to verify it was a good backup.  To test in sandbox, go to Sandbox & Verification > Test & Verify Backups.

Altaro (10)

I want to test a full restore so for Step 1 I am selecting that.  Click Next to proceed to Step 2.

Altaro (11)

Check the backup locations to test.  In my test environment this will be the D drive so I have checked that. Click Next to process to Step 3.

Altaro (12)

The VMs you can test a full restore of are shown.  I only have one VM although for some reason it is showing twice.  I will just select the first one and click Next to proceed to Step 4.

Altaro (13)

Step 4 are the restore options.  You can pick the backup you want to restore.  If you have multiple backups of the VMs you can select the instance you want to test.  You can also choose the host and datastore to restore to.  I chose a different host and datastore to test with.  Click Perform Test Restore to start the process.

Altaro (14)

A green notification will appear that tells you to go to the Dashboard to monitor the progress.  Click the green button to head over there.

Once the test restore is complete you will see the VM in your vCenter inventory.  The VM name will be similar to TTYLinux-Sandbox-2015-09-09 19-59 but it does not look like it actually puts the VM into a different network group to truly sandbox the VM off from the original.  You would need to assign this VM to a different network to not interrupt the production VM.  Having to do this manually is not ideal and I would recommend to Altaro that this be added into a future release.  Once assigned to a “sandbox” network, power it on to make sure it works.  When you are finished testing, power the VM down and delete it.

Overall Altaro is a very nice and easy to use solution for backing up VMware VMs.  I like the fact that all the VMs you would assign to storage, backups, retention, etc show on the same screen as what are are trying to configure.  That way you can easily select VMs from the left pane to drag and drop to the right pane.  I would rate it 4 out of 5 stars as it has all the main features you would want in backup/protection software.  The only negative for me is the sandbox feature missing the ability to choose a different network as part of the test restore.

For product information, please visit the Altaro VM Backup site.  You can also pull up the latest user guide here.

VMworld 2015 – Day 2 Announcements

The general sessions on Day 2 of VMworld centered around EUC (End User Computing).  Here is a quick summary and I will post links to more information as well.

VMware Workspace Suite

The VMware Workspace Suite is comprised of Horizon desktop virtualization, Identity Manager, Horizon FLEX and AirWatch EMM.  The goal of this suite is to be able to deliver any application on any device.

VMware and Microsoft Partnership

VMware and Microsoft announced a partnership to enable delivery and management for Windows 10 applications and devices.  This will be driven by a new VMware tech preview called Project A2 which is comprised of AirWatch EMM and VMware App Volumes.

VMware Identity Manager Advanced Edition

VMware Identity Manager Advanced Edition is a package of Identity Manager focused on broad-based deployment across all employees on any of their devices, laptops or desktops across any network for SaaS, Mobile, and Windows apps.

Horizon Enhancements

I will defer to the following blog post by Shankar Iyer: https://blogs.vmware.com/euc/2015/09/vmware-desktop-and-application-updates.html 

AirWatch and NSX

VMware has integrated NSX with AirWatch EMM to deliver security capabilities to mobile devices that access the corporate network. 

5 Imperatives for digital business from Pat Gelsinger

These are too good not to quote from the original blog:

VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger closed out Tuesday’s General Session with a powerful presentation on what it will take for businesses to succeed in today’s mobile-cloud landscape. Here are Gelsinger’s five imperatives for digital business:

1. Innovate like a start-up, deliver like an enterprise. Nimble startups are thriving in the mobile-cloud era, while large, stagnant corporations are being threatened for failing to innovate. As Eric Pearson, CIO of IHG, said earlier this week, “It’s no longer the big companies beating the small companies, it’s now the fast beating the slow.”

2. Embrace Unified Hybrid Cloud. The journey to the cloud is maturing as the industry shifts from experimentation to professional delivery. Unified hybrid cloud is bridging the gap between personal and private cloud so that organizations can take advantage of the best of both worlds.

3. Architect with security in mind. Instead of adding security in as a last minute feature, organizations need to choose solutions that have robust security capabilities built in from the start. Virtualization helps provide the foundational level of security to protect the people, apps and data that keep organizations running.

4. Automate everything to predict (almost) anything. The next major wave of innovative technology is automated smart technology that knows what to do before you tell it to. Apps, big data and analytics are the building blocks behind these emerging forms of proactive technology, and the businesses that know how to use them will come out on top.

5. Take risks to stand out. Businesses that don’t take risks and focus on innovation will not survive the next decade. And as IT professionals, we must constantly lead the charge for change by questioning the status quo and creating new, more efficient ways of completing traditional tasks.

There is my summary!  You can get more details and more links from the original VMware blog post here.

VMware Extends Unified Hybrid Cloud Platform

VMware announced many updates to extend their Unified Hybrid Cloud Platform on Monday.  A copy of the press release is below. (content from This Press Release)

New Public Cloud Services and Software-Defined Data Center Solutions Enable Organizations to Securely Build, Run and Deliver Any Application

SAN FRANCISCO, CA–(Marketwired – August 31, 2015) – Today at VMworld® 2015, VMware, Inc. (NYSE: VMW) announced new innovations for the company’s unified hybrid cloud platform. These new public cloud services and software-defined solutions will enable customers to build applications faster, improve IT security, rapidly recover from disasters and drive meaningful business value.

“Digital business transformation is creating new opportunities and new risks across every industry,” said Raghu Raghuram, executive vice president and general manager, Software-Defined Data Center Division, VMware. “Applications are the fuel of this digital business transformation. With our One Cloud, Any Application, Any Device™ strategy and our unified hybrid cloud platform, VMware is empowering the next wave of industry leaders to deliver applications with the stability, security and reliability of an enterprise, while allowing organizations to innovate with the agility of a startup.”

VMware’s unified hybrid cloud platform enables customers to create one consistent environment based on VMware vSphere® across the private and public cloud to securely build, run and deliver any traditional or cloud-native application. VMware’s unified hybrid cloud platform is built on a software-defined data center architecture, and offers customers openness and choice in how to build and manage applications and cloud environments based on their needs.

VMware’s Expanding Portfolio of Public Cloud Services

VMware vCloud® Air™, the public cloud component of VMware’s unified platform, allows the data center and cloud to remain connected so that all resources are accessible and shared across the hybrid cloud. VMware vCloud Air streamlines the digital processes required to realize the value of applications while maintaining the security and performance organizations demand. New or expanded vCloud Air services include:

VMware vCloud Air Disaster Recovery Services – VMware offers a unique approach to cloud disaster recovery, which includes a single cloud-based orchestration console and cloud services that deliver unified protection of all resources on-premises and off-premises. Key new enhancements to be delivered include:

Disaster Recovery OnDemand™: VMware will add a pay-for-what-you-consume pricing option to VMware vCloud Air Disaster Recovery. Customers will pay a flat fee for each VM protected and the amount of storage consumed by the VMs. When a DR test is run or a DR event occurs, customers will only pay for the compute consumed when VMs are running.

Site Recovery Manager Air™: Site Recovery Manager Air is a software as a service offering that will provide VMware vCloud Air Disaster Recovery customers with a comprehensive management solution for designing, testing, executing and orchestrating centralized business continuity and disaster recovery plans. VMware Site Recovery Manager Air will enable fast, reliable and orchestrated recovery of multi-VM applications and data centers protected in VMware vCloud Air.

VMware vCloud Air Object Storage – VMware vCloud Air Object Storage is a portfolio of highly scalable, reliable and cost effective storage services for unstructured data. VMware vCloud Air Object Storage powered by Google Cloud Platform is based on Google Cloud Storage and integrated into vCloud Air OnDemand. VMware vCloud Air Object Storage powered by EMC is based on EMC ViPR, offered by EMC Cloud Services and integrated into vCloud Air OnDemand. VMware vCloud Air Object Storage will be easy to setup and exceptionally durable and available, and will reduce the need for data protection with built-in redundancy. It will support global access use cases with easy access from any device, anywhere, anytime.

VMware vCloud Air SQL – VMware vCloud Air SQL is a new database as a service offering that will provide easy access to scalable, cloud-hosted relational databases. Delivered in a cost-efficient pay-as-you-go model, and built on the trusted foundation of vSphere, vCloud Air SQL will support hybrid data solutions that seamlessly and securely extend on-premises databases to the cloud. VMware vCloud Air SQL will support Microsoft SQL Server, with a variety of memory, compute and storage options, and plans to support other relational databases in the future.

Software-Defined Data Center – The Foundation for a Unified Hybrid Cloud Strategy

Research indicates the software-defined data center is going mainstream, as customers move from virtualizing compute resources to implementing storage and network virtualization. A new report by Research and Markets notes that the software-defined data center market will hit $77.18 billion by the year 2020, which is up from the $21.78 billion it’s expected to rake in for 2015.

VMware announced new product releases for the software-defined data center that include:

VMware NSX™ 6.2 – VMware NSX 6.2 enables organizations to achieve application continuity through disaster recovery and metro-pooling for more efficient use of resources throughout a single data center and across data centers. With VMware NSX, customers can reduce recovery time objectives by as much as 80 percent1. VMware NSX 6.2 also adds better integration with physical infrastructure, enabling simplified and consistent operations for the entire data center network and the extension of micro-segmentation to physical servers. Finally, new capabilities such as Traceflow and Central CLI further simplify operations and visibility. Read this blog to learn more about VMware NSX 6.2.

VMware vRealize™ Operations™ 6.1 – VMware vRealize Operations 6.1 will deliver a consistent management framework as organizations evolve from the private cloud and adopt technologies for the hybrid cloud. With the new Intelligent Workload Placement capability, VMware vRealize Operations will match the workload to a customer’s specific IT and business needs, and recommend the best placement location. Proactive Rebalancing enables customers to continually meet those needs. Operating system and application monitoring will be available natively in VMware vRealize Operations and predictive analytics help IT proactively identify and avoid potential issues across infrastructure and application stacks from a unified self-learning management solution. For more information, read VMworld 2015: Intelligent Workload Management with vRealize Operations 6.1.

vRealize Log Insight™ 3 – New features in vRealize Log Insight 3 will include double the scale and performance to 15,000 messages per second, improvements in fault tolerance around clustering, analytics improvements with new charting options and query snapshots, improved integration with vRealize Operations, and improvements in Big Data style query execution.

VMware Integrated OpenStack 2 – VMware Integrated OpenStack 2 will be based on OpenStack Kilo, making it current with upstream OpenStack code, and will include an industry-first seamless upgrade capability that will address one of the largest deployment and operational challenges for OpenStack clouds. VMware Integrated OpenStack will also include enhancements such as load-balancing as a service, Ceilometer and Heat Auto Scaling to make VMware-based OpenStack clouds more scalable, performant and resilient. VMware also announced VMware Integrated OpenStack will be available to service providers through the VMware vCloud Air Network program. Read this blog to learn more about VMware Integrated OpenStack 2.

VMware Site Recovery Manager 6.1 – VMware Site Recovery Manager 6.1 will integrate with VMware NSX 6.2, enabling IT to use network virtualization to simplify disaster recovery management and accelerate recovery in the software-defined data center. VMware Site Recovery Manager will orchestrate the live migration of VMs at scale between sites by automating cross-vCenter vMotion operations, enabling zero downtime disaster avoidance and data center migrations. VMware Site Recovery Manager will interoperate with VMware vSphere Storage Policy-Based Management to enable automatic, policy-based disaster protection for VMs. VMware Site Recovery Manager will now add support for stretched cluster solutions including EMC VPLEX, Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform and IBM San Volume Controller. Read this blog to learn more about Site Recovery Manager 6.1.

VMware vSphere APIs for IO Filtering – VMware vSphere APIs for IO Filtering will enable ecosystem partners including Asigra, EMC, Infinio, PrimaryIO, Samsung, SanDisk and StorageCraft to offer third party software-based data services such as replication and caching. These data services will be fully integrated in vSphere and managed through vSphere Storage Policy-Based Management, which is the same framework used to manage all the software-defined storage services in vSphere. Hear what our partners are saying about vSphere APIs for IO Filtering.

Technology Preview – Project Skyscraper

Today at VMworld 2015, VMware revealed a technology preview of Project Skyscraper, a new set of innovative hybrid cloud capabilities for vSphere. These new capabilities will enable customers to extend their data center to the public cloud and seamlessly operate across boundaries while providing enterprise-level security and business continuity. At VMworld, the company will demonstrate live workload migration through Cross-Cloud vMotion and Content Sync across a private cloud and vCloud Air. Read more about Project Skyscraper in this blog.

Analyst and Customer Commentary

“As a result of the success and comfort level IT organizations are having with software-defined data center strategies and the increasing simplicity of cloud solutions fueled by core virtualization, we are witnessing an IT infrastructure and information security sea-change taking place. VMware is one of the companies that is driving this IT transformation. VMware’s strategy to combine a platform for achieving a unified hybrid cloud with business mobility solutions that enable organizations to extend secure access to applications and information to any device or user is resonating with customers, and increasingly making them a more strategic IT partner.” – Mark Bowker, senior analyst at ESG

“The growth of virtualization and the mainstream adoption of the software defined data center has really enabled our IT strategy. It’s all about delivering agility and flexibility and exploiting software defined technologies to tailor environments to meet our business challenges. Through VMware’s unified hybrid cloud approach, we estimate the time it takes to deliver value through IT to the business has improved by close to 75 percent, with better security controls and in full compliance with Sarbanes Oxley and other regulations by which we are governed.” – Bryan Thompson, executive vice president and CTO at Heartland Payment Systems

“Our developers need us to move fast. Our business needs us to be secure and compliant. Our management needs us to help drive revenue and capture market opportunities. With VMware we have access to a unified platform that spans both the public and private cloud to support this wide range of business requirements. The vRealize suite really is at the heart of it for us. With vRealize we get a robust set of management tools that can operate across our heterogeneous infrastructure to help us drive down inefficiency and cost. The NSX platform gives us a new model for securing our hybrid cloud environment. And vCloud Air will provide us with a simple and cost effective way to improve our approach to disaster recovery.” – Michael Conroy, director, TechOps at Rent-A-Center

Pricing and Availability

VMware vCloud Air Object Storage powered by Google Cloud Platform is generally available.

VMware vCloud Air SQL is available now as part of an early access program.

VMware vCloud Air Object Storage powered by EMC is expected to be available as part of an early access program in Q3 2015.

VMware vCloud Air Disaster Recovery OnDemand and Site Recovery Manager Air are expected to be available as part of early access programs in Q4 2015.

VMware NSX 6.2 is generally available and can be purchased with either a perpetual or term license. List pricing for a perpetual license starts at USD $4,995 per CPU and list price for a term license starts at USD $34 per VM per month, with volume discounts available.

VMware Integrated OpenStack 2, Virtual SAN 6.1, vRealize Operations 6.1, vRealize Log Insight 3, Site Recovery Manager 6.1 and VMware vSphere APIs for IO Filtering are all expected to be generally available in Q3 2015.

VMworld 2015 – Day 0 (Shawn’s Perspective)

Sunday is what I always call Day 0 as the actual conference starts on Monday.  Here is my perspective on Sunday. I used Sunday as a networking day, a day to meet up with friends and peers in the industry.  One of the most fun ways to catch up is an event called V0dgeball!  This is a fun dodgeball tournament that raises money for the Wounded Warrior Project.  I played on the vExpert team this year and our team made it to the semifinals.  It is an amazingly fun time killing your peers with dodgeballs and they will still be your friend later. 

After V0dgeball I headed over to the Solutions Exchange to catch the first view of all the vendors at VMworld this year.  I visited all the booths where I have developed friendships so I could catch up.  Of course there were some vExpert gifts to go grab so I made sure I did that.

I left the Solutions Exchange to head to a special dinner held by Commvault, of our our sponsors for VMworld this year.  I spent about an hour there meeting and chatting with Commvault executives and Commvault customers.  I do my best to spend time discussing non-IT or non-technical things on purpose to get to know people outside of their companies.  It was a great time! Thanks for thee invite Leo!

Finally, Day 0 would not be complete without atttending #VMunderground.  This event was made possible by many sponsors, EMC Elect and Infinio to name just a few.  This is the biggest networking event of the evening in my personal opinion.  I got to see all my friends and colleagues again to catch up.  This is by far one of my favorite events of VMworld.

Day 0 was amazing and I cannot wait to see what the rest of the week holds!

VMworld 2015 Sponsors – Zerto and Opvizor

The final 2 sponsors for vBrainstorm at VMworld 2015 are Zerto and Opvizor!

First up is Zerto!  Zerto says it best with this excerpt from their web site:

Zerto provides enterprise-class business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) solutions for virtualized IT infrastructure & cloud.

They not only provide your typical backup of VMs but also virtual replication of VMs to a remote location.  vSphere, Hyper-V and even Amazon Web Services (AWS) is supported by Zerto.  Visit their web site for videos and customer testimonials.

So what is Zerto doing at VMworld?  Zerto is famous at VMworld for “Red Wednesday”!  This is the day that you wear your Zerto Red T-Shirt that you get at their booth to win some great prizes!  I was fortunate enough one year to win some Beats headphones from Zerto.  It is as simple as their prize team spotting you around VMworld and choosing you for a prize!  It really is that simple.  Zerto is also throwing a party and I am super excited about this one.  The are going to have an all female Queen cover band called “Killer Queens”!  I cannot wait to hear some of that!

You can find Zerto at booth #623.  You can also read more about what Zerto has in store at VMworld at http://www.zerto.com/zerto-at-vmworld-2015/.

Finally our final sponsor is Opvizor!  Opvizor provides solutions to monitor the health of your VMware environment as well as monitoring VM snapshots in your environment.  Opvizor says this statement about their solution on their web site:

With Opvizor you control everything you love about VMware, and Opvizor automates all the rest

Opvizor’s Health Analyzer solution analyzes your VMware infrastructure, offer resolutions, provide reporting and help you optimize virtual applications!  Opvizor’s Snapwatcher solution monitors VMware snapshots across vCenter systems, tracks the snapshots, finds invalid snapshots and helps free wasted disk space by fixing broken, old and invalid snapshots.

Opvizor is not going to be at VMworld this year so I highly encourage you to visit the web site for more information: https://www.opvizor.com/

Look for myself (rolltidega), Roger (rogerlund) and Aaron (virtualroads) wearing the shirt below around VMworld!  We can help you find Zerto’s booth on the show floor!  Hope to see you there!

ZertoOp

Early peak at the #vBrownBag TechTalks Schedule at VMworld US 2015

The professionalvmware.com site, the home of the #vBrownBag goodness, has posted an early look at the schedule for the #vBrownBag TechTalks in the hang space at VMworld US 2015.  I wanted to re-post the schedule here to increase awareness of these talks.  If you are going to hang out in the hang space, please come and support this individuals!
(Note:  Info shared from http://professionalvmware.com/2015/08/vbrownbag-techtalks-schedule-vmworld-usa-2015/)

Time   Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday
10:30 vExpert Daily vExpert Daily vExpert Daily vExpert Daily
11:00 Edward Haletky @Texiwill 6-Step Program for Hybrid Cloud Edward Haletky @Texiwill Let’s Throw in Some Security: A hybrid
Cloud Security Model
Virtualization Practise Panel Chris Wahl -Scripting and Versioning with PowerShell ISE and Git Shell
11:15 Irfan Ahmad – CloudPhysics – The Unofficial VCDX Toolchest Irfan Ahmad – CloudPhysics – Help! My Dashboards Suck! continued Vaughn Stewart – Run 20% – 40% more VMs per host with Flash Storage
11:30 Michael White – Spotlight on Your Data Kenneth Hui -The Easy Button For Turning Your vSphere Environment Into A Private Cloud Gabriel Chapman – Solidfire – Infrastructure Agility in the Software Defined Data Center Josh Atwell – DevOps with PowerCLI and PowerShell DSC
11:45 Andy Warfield – Coho Data Andy Warfield – Coho Data continued Cody Hosterman – Space Reclamation in vSphere 6
12:00 VMUG LATAM Panel (Spanish) Anthony Spiteri – NSX – An Unexpected Journey VMware Communities Podcast Eric Wright – Getting to the Core with CoreOS
12:15 continued Ken Thomas -One Solution for All: Deploy to VMs and Physical using MDT continued James Brown -Virtual Design Master
12:30 Dave LeClair – Unitrends – Recover Simplicity! Dave LeClair – Unitrends – Is your data protection and DR solution built for a cloud-driven world? continued continued
12:45 Joseph Griffiths – Reference Architecture for Automation Luis Concistre – Horizon View & VMware NSX continued Tim Carr – Versioning deployments with Puppet, R10K, and Git
13:00  Kevin Moats – GPU virtualization in the home lab HP Blogger Briefing Dave Frederick – The Advantages of a Tiered Approach to VM Storage Steve Flanders – The importance of customer experience
13:15 Gina Rosenthal (Minks) – Why you need to #BackThatSaaSUp continued Gabriel Maciel – VMware NSX Architecture and Components Interaction
13:30 Scott Davis – Infinio – Disruptive Storage Innovations and the Impact on Virtual Desktop Solutions continued vBrownBag LATAM Panel (Spanish)
13:45 Scott Davis – cont continued continued
14:00 Jaison Bailley and the vBrisket community continued Paul Braren – Home Virtualization Lab Productivity Tips Hang Space Closed
14:15 Luke Brown – Dinosaurs Didn’t Do DR continued Anthony Chow – Micro-Segmentation – a perfect fit for microservices security
14:30 Craig Waters – Anatomy of an SSD Craig Waters  – How to start a user group (BYOUG) Shruti Bhat – Liuve demo – Running your ESXi workloads in AWS
14:45 Jonathan Frappier and Tim Jabaut – Stop being an “Admin” and learn to embrace “DevOps” Edward Haletky @Texiwill – Proper Use of RBAC to Secure your Virtual Environment John Arrasjid – IT Architect: Foundation in the Art of IT Infrastructure Design
15:00 In Tech We Trust Podcast Speaking in Tech Podcast Geek Whisperers Podcast
15:15 continued continued continued
15:30 continued continued continued
15:45 continued continued continued
16:00 Dennis Bray and Chip Copper – Brocade – NSX based Advanced Network Architecture in SDDC to deploy highly automated IT Service Delivery Elver Sena Sosa and Anuj Dewangan – Brocade -Scaling your cloud network: Building a massively scalable cloud infrastructure with VMware NSX & advanced physical network architectures Tony Foster – Sizing for GPU Workloads
16:15 David Siles – Proactive Data-Awareness Inside Your VMs David Klebanov – SDDC Gone Global with Software Defined WAN Brian Trainor – Automatic” remediation with vRealize Operations
16:30 Michaell Rice – Rackspace – Stop testing scripts in production; Meet vCenter Simulator Luke Huckaba – Rackspace – A distilled version of the SRM talk David Klee – SQL Server Virtualization Gotchya’s
16:45 Michael Rice – Introduction to pyVmomi Michael Rice – YAVIJAVA an alternative Java SDK for vSphere Michael Rice – vCenter Simulator For Functional Testing
17:00 Hersey Cartwright – Using PowerCLI to manage SSH on ESXi Hersey Cartwright – Managing vCenter Roles and Permissions with PowerCLI Hang Space closed
17:15 Eric Wright – Abstract all the things! Simplifying the whole stack James Green, Emad Younis – ”Batman” is Not A Career Strategy
17:30 Cisco Panel Nigel Hickey – The #vExpertSpotlight
17:45  continued Steve Flanders – Quality log messages and how to write them