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A week in virtualization

The big news of the week is of course change of leadership at our company. On September 1, 2012 our CEO Paul Maritz will be succeeded by Pat Gelsinger, who is currently president and chief operating officer at EMC Information Infrastructure.  Paul will remain a board member of VMware and will take on a new technology strategist role at EMC. Pat will join our Board of Directors on the first of September as well.

“In Pat and Paul, we are fortunate to have two world-class leaders,” said Joe Tucci, chairman of VMware’s Board of Directors. “The strong teams that we now have in place at VMware and EMC allow me to ask Pat and Paul to take on two of the defining challenges and opportunities of the new, unfolding IT era: Cloud Infrastructure and big data. They have unique backgrounds and skills, and I look forward to continuing to work with both of them.”

We have also announced preliminary second quarter results, including record quarterly revenues, up 22% over second quarter 2011, and second quarter non-GAAP operating margins of approximately 32%. Both these numbers have exceeded our earlier guidance. You can read the full press release at vmware.com/company/news

Last week, VMware ThinApp has had a minor release, but don’t be fooled by the three-digit version number! The newly-released ThinApp 4.7.2 has some exciting features that people have been asking for, such as a mechanism for updating ThinApp packages in Horizon Application Manager; a new relink –h command to enable prior ThinApp packages for Horizon; and RemoveSandboxOnStart, a new Package.ini parameter.

The update mechanism allows you to place new versions of ThinApp packages on the Horizon ThinApp Repository, and Horizon reads a new VersionID parameter built into the package to differentiate the updated package from the prior package. Application entitlements and desktop shortcuts are preserved! Find out all about the new ThinApp release on the End-User Computing blog at blogs.vmware.com/euc

In other news, you can win a pass to VMworld 2012 by voting in the “how do you speak cloud” contest, which is in its second week now. You can play a part in naming the ultimate victor in this battle of music videos. With each vote you cast, you'll be entered in a random drawing for a $15 iTunes gift card, and there will be two drawings per day for each voting week. For the final week of voting, there will be a grand prize drawing for a full conference pass to VMworld 2012 in San Francisco. All votes cast throughout the 3 weeks will be included in the final drawing. Go to wespeakcloud.vmware.com to find out more and to vote!

If you live and work in the EMEA region, you can win $20,000 worth of VMware software and services in the Think Big For Your Business competition. If you have an idea of how virtualization and cloud computing could be used not just to cut cost, but to really transform your business, we’d like to hear about it. And if our judging panel thinks your idea is exceptionally creative and workable, you could be in with a chance of winning $20,000 of VMware software and services to turn your idea into reality. Visit thinkingbigcompetition.com for winning tips and to enter the contest.

The free on-demand training bootcamp for VMware View Mobile Secure Desktop starts on July 16th. In this ten-part bootcamp we will show you how to get started and how to successfully roll out and deploy virtual desktops and applications and infrastructure to securely support mobile users. Everyone who registers for the bootcamp will also receive a free e-book with all the presentation slides from the series. Visit communities.vmware.com and click on the orange button that says View Bootcamp on it to see the listing of all the scheduled presentations and to register.

And finally, Indianapolis VMUG is having a full-day user conference on the 26th this month. This one is the last full-day user conference until after VMworld San Francisco, with more of them taking place in the fall. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG conference near you and to register.

A week in virtualization

The vCenter Operations "Tell Your Story" Contest Ends today. We are seeking the most compelling story on how you used vCenter Operations Manager to help solve, or predict any issues in your environment – it’s that easy! Once submitted, your story will be judged by a panel of experts both from VMware and the VMware community.

We have two first prizes: a Ticket to VMworld 2012 ($1,800 value) and a chance to Co-present in a VMworld session, as well as have dinner with your fellow panelists – on us! The other first prize is a Ticket to VMworld EMEA 2012, a co-presentation in a session there, and a dinner with the panelists.

We also have two second prizes: someone in Europe and another person in the US will get a $500 Amex Gift Card and a bag of VMware Swag each. Visit vmware.com/go/vcops-story to find out more and to submit your story before the contest ends.

On Monday we announced the availability of VMware Certified Advanced Professional on vSphere 5 for Datacenter Administration (VCAP5-DCA), giving VCP5s a way to demonstrate expertise with VMware vSphere 5, as well as ability to use automation tools and implement virtualized environments.

The VCAP5-DCA exam is a unique, lab-based exam where you will perform tasks using actual equipment to verify your skill at installing, configuring, and administering large and complex virtualized environments. Visit our training and certification blog at blogs.vmware.com/education to find out the exam requirements and the link to the registration page.

Last week, we have launched our first vCloud certification beta, which focuses on VCP Infrastructure as a service. The VCP IaaS will focus on installing, configuring, and administering infrastructure as a service clouds based on vCloud Director, it is expected to be launched in late July. It requires that you already have a VCP so it’s the second form of the VCP with the VCP-DT being the other. Go to the vCloud blog at blogs.vmware.com/vcloud to find out more.

The free on-demand training bootcamp for VMware View Mobile Secure Desktop starts on July 16th. In this ten-part bootcamp we will show you how to get started and how to successfully roll out and deploy virtual desktops and applications and infrastructure to securely support mobile users. Everyone who registers for the bootcamp will also receive a free e-book with all the presentation slides from the series. Visit communities.vmware.com and click on the orange button that says View Bootcamp on it to see the listing of all the scheduled presentations and to register.

And finally, there are a number of VMUG full-day user conferences happening next month. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG conference near you and to register.

A week in virtualization

The new VMworld 2012 web theme was unveiled last week. Check it out and register today at vmworld.com

While you are there, book your hotel for VMworld during the registration process. You can save an average of $150 per night. 

The VMware certification team just announced that exams will be half off during the conference. Seats are limited. For more information, go to  http://www.pearsonvue.com/vmware/vmworld/.

Make sure you invite a colleague to attend VMworld. You can earn great FREE rewards like an iPad or a Kindle. Check out the VMworld blog for details and rules.

To all VMworld US Sponsors and Exhibitors, submit your products or services for the “Best of VMworld” awards. The deadline for submission is Friday, July 27. Find out how to enter at the VMworld blog.

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In other news,  the Center for Policy and Compliance announced the release of the free vSphere 5.0 compliance checker. Download it today.

The VMware training team has released another set of free online eLearning courses that cover cloud, View, vC Ops, BCDR and other topics. Check them out at blogs.vmware.com/education

Training has also released a new course for vCenter Operations Manager: Analyze and Predict version 5.0. It will teach you skills for using vCenter Ops Manager as a forensic and predictive tool. More information is available at mylearn.vmware.com

The vCenter Operations “Tell Your Story” Contest ends on July 11. The grand prize is a ticket and an opportunity to speak at VMworld 2012! Get more details at the contest page.

Finally, the VMUG full-day user conferences continue in July in Salt Lake City and Indianapolis. The free conferences feature keynotes, breakout sessions, and socialization with industry colleagues from your geographic area. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG near you and register.

A week in virtualization

Last week, we have announced the general availability release of VMware Horizon Application Manager 1.5. Horizon Application Manager gives corporate IT departments the ability to manage Windows-based applications, and public as well as private cloud applications, and provides holistic usage visibility. In turn, the corporate end-users get a simple secure workspace and an enterprise application catalog for on-demand access to any of their apps. This release is an important step for VMware as we continue to work towards our our vision of a singular management platform for end-user computing in the “Post-PC” Era. Check out the EUC blog at blogs.vmware.com/euc for more details.

The VMware vSphere Bootcamp has just launched yesterday. I this nine-part series, we show you how to get started and successfully roll out and deploy your IT infrastructure. We have sessions covering everything from storage and networking best practices, to virtualizing business-critical applications and advanced functionality. At the end of the bootcamp you will know how to build a flexible, efficient datacenter with VMware vSphere and transform your IT infrastructure!

After the bootcamp is complete, every registered participant will receive a free e-book with all the session slides in it. It is not too late to register and catch up. Simply go to communities.vmware.com, the link to the bootcamp is smack dab in the middle of the page, so go and get your free training today!

VMware’s ThinApp Factory is now freely available on our VMware Lab’s website. The ThinApp Factory is a virtual appliance that brings centralized administration and automation to the process of creating virtualized Windows applications with VMware ThinApp technology.

ThinApp Factory utilizes vSphere API's to spawn workloads that automatically convert fileshares of application installers into ThinApp application containers. These workloads can be run in parallel to maximize throughput and increase ROI for virtualization projects. Packagers and administrators can now utilize “Recipes” during this packaging process. Recipes are simply small JSON files, which contain a redistributable blueprint of the customizations and optimizations necessary for packaging complex applications.  These recipes can be created and now exchanged freely with other customers via the ThinApp Packaging Community site.

We also introduced the concept of “Feeds” with the Factory that allow administrators to subscribe RSS-style to a legitimized source for application installers from a Corp IT location or via a cloud-based service. Read more and get your ThinApp Factory appliance on the End User Computing blog at blogs.vmware.com/euc

A few days ago, we here in the Social Media group relaunched VMwareTV on Youtube with a new layout, some new features, and unified navigation connecting all VMware YouTube channels. We would like to know what you think, so share your comments by posting on each channel or by sharing the content with the social share buttons. Make sure you stay current on the latest videos by subscribing to VMware TV today. You can read more about our new Youtube presence on the VMTN blog at blogs.vmware.com/vmtn 

The Public Sector blog has a gripping personal account by one of my colleagues here at VMware who traveled to France with support of the VMware Foundation to participate in La Course du Coer, which is a 750km biking and relay event that takes teams of participants from Paris to French Alps to help raise awareness of the importance of organ donation. Visit blogs. vmware.com/publicsector for this uplifting and inspiring story.

The third hint in the “Guess the Artist” VMworld competition has been revealed yesterday. Some say that this artist has won a Grammy in their 20+ year career, and that he or she has been on the People magazine’s 50 most beautiful people in the world list at least once. All we know, it’s the VMware Stig!

If you want to guess who the artist really is, and find out about rules and prizes, visit the VMworld official blog at vmworld.com/blogs/vmworld.

And finally, there are a number of VMUG full-day user conferences happening over the next couple of weeks. There’s one in Wisconsin, another in Salt Lake City, and a third one in Indianapolis. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG conference near you and to register.

A week in virtualization

We’re starting with an announcement. Today, we have introduced several new initiatives in the open source Hadoop community to enable big data applications to be deployed more easily, rapidly and in a more agile manner. Among these initiatives is Project Serengeti, which is a highly available, managed Hadoop platform with the goal of automating the deployment of Hadoop nodes on virtual infrastructure. Using the best of breed of open source Hadoop and Virtualization features, Serengeti can rapidly deploy a highly available Hadoop cluster.

You can deploy one or many virtual Hadoop clusters onto a vSphere farm, using traditional shared storage or local-storage. Serengeti can deploy multiple Hadoop distributions and common Hadoop components such as HDFS, MapReduce, Pig, and Hive on a single virtual platform.

Project Serengeti is endorsed by Hortonworks, Cloudera, MapR, and Greenplum, and the source code has been made available on Github, while a compiled version of the tool is available as a virtual appliance for vSphere.

To read more, visit our CTO blog at cto.vmware.com

Last week, VMware has been named a winner in the 2012 ChannelPro-SMB Readers’ Choice Awards in the category of Best Virtualization Vendor, as well as a runner-up in the categories of Vendor Partner Program: Best Sales Support, Vendor Partner Program: Best Technical Support, and Vendor Partner Program: Best Training Programs.

 

Readers of ChannelPro-SMB were invited to participate in the channel's first SMB-focused Readers' Choice Awards by casting their votes for the most SMB- and partner-friendly products, technologies, services, programs, and professional organizations in the channel today, via the publication's website. More than 1000 VARs, MSPs, system integrators, custom builders, and IT consultants have cast their votes, and we would like to thank you all for helping VMware win this prestigious title. Read more on our SMB blog at blogs.vmware.com/smb

Starting today, you can register for VMworld Europe, which is taking place in Barcelona this year. If you want to catch the early bird discount, register before July 20th, to save some cash.

We also have a contest going on for the best guess as to who will be playing at the VMworld party in San Francisco this year. To participate, you have to tweet with the hashtag “VMworldBand” – and the hints will be provided on the VMworld official blog. There will be four hints total, and the winner will get to attend the sound check of the band on Wednesday, August 29th. On your marks, set, tweet!

And finally, the VMUG full-day user conferences are all the rage this month. We got conferences in Seattle, Vancouver, Minneapolis and Wisconsin through the end of June, and if you think July is going to be quieter, think again, because Salt Lake City and Indianapolis VMUGs are going to be hosting their conferences. If you wonder what a VMUG user conference is, I like to compare them to mini-VMworlds, where you have your keynotes, breakout sessions, and socialization with industry colleagues from your geographic area. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG conference near you and to register.

A week in virtualization

Tomorrow, on June 7th (Pacific Daylight Saving time), VMware will host its first ever Global Support Services (GSS) Virtual Customer Support Day. Join us for a comprehensive and highly educational seminar in which our Senior Technical Support Engineers will share "best practices" as well as tips and tricks of the trade. You will get a chance to get answers to your questions directly from our GSS experts in a Q&A session following each topic. The Support Insider blog has all the details and a link to register at blogs.vmware.com/kb

While we’re talking about learning the nuts and bolts, the vCoud team has published a full-length video taken from a vCloud Director Essentials training course, in which you get to see step-by-step, how to…

  • Monitor tasks and events in vCloud Director, at multiple levels, just like you already do in VMware vCenter or vSphere.
  • Monitor blocking tasks, used when you have integrated vCloud Director with other management tools, connected through an AMQP broker, like RabbitMQ.
  • Check the status of provider and org vDC cloud infrastructure usage.
  • View vCloud Director log files from the command line.

Check out blogs.vmware.com/vcloud for all this training goodness.

Also, last Friday the security team has released the vSphere 5.0 Security Hardening Guide. In this release, the guide has been revised from the ground up based on customer requests and feedback. It is being released exclusively in spreadsheet format to make it easier to follow the recommended steps.

All guidelines now use the same set of metadata, and a new standardized and extensible identification scheme. This will enable customers to more readily adapt the guide to suit their particular environment by selecting the specific guidelines and fields that are of interest to them, and also help them in the generation of standard checklists and similar documents.

To read more and to download the vSphere Security Hardening Guide, visit blogs.vmware.com/security

And finally, the VMUG full-day user conferences are all over the place this month. One is happening as we speak, in New York City, another is scheduled for tomorrow in Philadelphia, then we move on to Seattle, Vancouver, Minneapolis and Wisconsin through the rest of the month. If you wonder what a VMUG user conference is, I like to compare them to mini-VMworlds, where you have your keynotes, breakout sessions, and socialization with industry colleagues from your geographic area. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG conference near you and to register.

A week in virtualization

Yesterday, VMware has announced that we are going to acquire Wanova, a company that makes Wanova Mirage, an image replication and layering technology. With the combination of VMware View and Wanova Mirage, the benefits of central image management can be extended to more types of end point systems – including physical, virtual, tethered desktops and roaming laptops (Mac and PC).

In his blog post, our CTO of End-User Computing Scott Davis explains that both VMware View™ and Wanova Mirage provide centralized desktop image management, all or nothing patching and push button image resets. The key difference in these technologies is that VMware View images execute on servers in the data center and use a remote graphics protocol for the user interface, while Wanova Mirage images are transmitted and cached locally for runtime execution on the client systems. This makes Mirage well-suited for executing managed images on disconnected laptops, including MacBooks running VMware Fusion®.  And VMware View remains the ideal choice for executing images securely in the data center and delivering the user interface to remote devices such as tablets and thin clients. In this manner, the two products stand independently and when put together address a much broader swath of the market than either is capable of individually.

You can visit cto.vmware.com to read the full blog post.

On a lighter note, the VMware Go blog has published another installment of the “Andy, the Angry IT Guy” series, this time comparing corporate IT organizations to the Night’s Watch from the Game of Thrones. He covers the dangers of browser malware attacks, third-party applications, and the benefits of automation. Check out blogs.vmware.com/go for the full post, and five more from the same dude Andy, he seems entertaining.

Wish you were at EMCworld? This week, my teammate Corey has launched a web app that plugs in with Instagram and collects snapshots tagged with EMCworld. They’ve also got a contest going with taking a picture of VMware+ card in front of something funny, interesting, or cool. Go to vmwebapp.com/instagram and have a look at all the pictures!

And finally, there will be two full-day VMUG conferences happening before the month is out: one in Western Pennsylvania, and one in Denver. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG conference near you and to register.

A week in virtualization

Yesterday, we’ve announced the vFabric Suite 5.1, which features automated deployment, new components, and open source support. I’ve always had a soft spot for open source software in my heart, and am glad to see the vFabric team showing it some love.

Back to the new features and components though, because there are a ton of them:

  • Application Director automates the deployment of applications through easy-to-use blueprints with standardized templates, component libraries and workflows
  • Application Performance Manager (APM) provides comprehensive monitoring of end-user transactions, Java code, middleware servers, and vSphere hosts. APM includes two components: vFabric AppInsight, which does transaction- and code-level monitoring and vFabric Hyperic, which monitors middleware servers and vSphere hosts, providing 50,000 metrics for over 75 popular web technologies.
  • vPostgres is relational SQL database that comes in as a virtual appliance and has virtualization optimizations such as elastic database memory and smart configuration to reduce tuning time after resizing virtual machines.
  • vFabric Administration Server (VAS) has a REST Management API for a uniform way to administer groups of vFabric Servers.

And in addition to all the new stuff above, every already existing product in vFabric Suite has been updated. Here are some of the highlights:

While not exactly a new release, our product page vmware.com/products has received a radical makeover, and I have to say, I dig it. Now you can browse all the myriad products that we now offer, either by type, or A to Z. This new page also incorporates a product selector tool, an interactive product diagram to help make sense of it all, and a nice animated Virtualization Overview video that is both informative and fun to watch. All the product news are also listed on that page now, that’s where you will find links to the new vFabric products today.

The registration is now open for VMword San Francisco—go register yourself and tell your friends. There are early bird discounts, VMUG Advantage discounts, other discounts that I can’t all remember, and of course the steepest discount of all is the speaker discount—if you present at the show, you will get your ticket free! There are still two more days left to submit your talk proposal, and the call for papers closes on the 18th of this month. This year, the VMworld team says there will be no extensions for the CFP, so if you miss the deadline, you’ll have to come back next year.

And finally, there will be three full-day VMUG conferences happening before the month is out: one in San Diego, another in Central Ohio, and also one in Denver. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG conference near you and to register.

A week in virtualization

The big news of the day is of course the big End-User Computing product launch: Zimbra 7.2, Socialcast, View 5.1, vCOps for View going GA, and Horizon Application Manager 1.5. In addition to that, the coveted Project Octopus beta is now also available. You can read all the details on the respective product pages and also check out blog posts at blogs.vmware.com/euc – they posted about a dozen articles there this morning.

We will talk about this in more detail with our guests in a few minutes, but I also wanted to take the opportunity to push the End User Computing virtual conference, which is going to take place tomorrow, on May the 3rd. It is free to attend as long as you register ahead of time. This virtual conference will feature:

  • A keynote from the VMware leadership team
  • Talks on latest innovations in the VMware End-User Computing portfolio
  • Live chat with VMware End-User Computing product experts
  • And of course, networking opportunities with peers 

Registration link is posted on the End-User Computing blog, and there are more details about the conference there as well. Once again, the URL is blogs.vmware.com/euc

The conference season is picking up, and we’ll be at a number of industry events in the upcoming days. You can catch us at the Interop in Vegas next week, as well as at Citrix Synergy in San Francisco. Then of course there is the VMware Forum currently on tour, hitting Zeist, Netherlands, London, Istanbul, Copenhagen, Vienna, Warsaw, Budapest, Paris, Zurich, and Manchester just in the next two weeks!

Finally, there will be a bunch of full-day VMUG conferences happening in May: Carolinas, Central Ohio, San Diego, Western Pennsylvania, and Denver. Go to myvmug.com to find a VMUG conference near you and to register.

In another bit of news, the newly-selected vExperts have been getting on board with the program for the past couple of weeks. We had quite an increase of interest in the program, with almost 600 applicants and 440 of them were selected to be vExperts in 2012. That’s about 100 more people than last year, as the program has grown both in numbers and in geographic reach. We welcome the new vExperts and are excited about having them on board!

VMTN community moderator semi-annual elections open

If you've been on VMTN forums for six months or longer, you might have noticed that we hold elections to introduce some new blood to the moderator group every six months. Anyone who wants to become a moderator is welcome to "run for office" by sending a private message to me, amaier650.

In order to qualify, you must agree to follow the VMTN Code of Conduct as well as User Moderator Guidelines. In addition to that, you have to be a registered VMware Communities user for 6 months or longer and achieve a status level of “Expert” or higher (751+ reward points).

Check out the Community FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) to find out how the points are earned and what status levels we have.

I am qualified to be a moderator, now what?

Now, you need to send a private message to me, amaier650, and include a couple paragraphs describing your motivation to become a moderator and why you think you would make a good one if elected.

The elections work quite simply: Every single current moderator has a veto. If a candidate receives no negative votes, or only positive ones, they are confirmed and will be made moderator come June 1.

We will collect all candidates' names until May 30th, and notifications will go out on the 1st of June. This is also the time when the newly-elected moderators will receive their access privileges to the private Moderators forum and their moderative superpowers.