In my last post, I discussed the upcoming release of the VMware Validated Design for SDDC 3.0 that was announced at VMworld 2016 in Las Vegas. Recall that the design provides a prescriptive and extensively-tested blueprint to deploy and operate an entire Software-Defined Data Center by synthesizing the full stack into a standardized, streamlined and scalable architecture, and it provides detailed guidance for an optimal deployment and efficient on-going operations. But, how do you get started learning about the design in an interactive way before delving into the comprehensive documentation? For that, we’ve publicly released Hands-on Lab HOL-1706-SDC-6 that debuted at VMworld.
VMware Hands-on Labs is a free online learning portal by VMware which provides access to the latest products in a tested and documented cloud based virtual lab environment. Our labs are focused on showing the latest in product features and capabilities, as opposed to prescriptive guidance on Software-Defined Data Center architectures. As such, we keep our labs as lean as possible – ensuring maximum performance and scale while providing everyone the best possible experience in the learning environment. So, how did we create a lab that shows the architecture of the VMware Validated Design for SDDC?
Since the full design itself is not conducive to a nested lab, we’ve used a new concept that was introduced for many of our labs this year – interactive simulations. These interactive simulations allow us to present a lab simulation that follows along with the lab manual and any educational content. The response to the simulations has been overwhelmingly positive. The labs not only start up quickly, but they simulate a real production environment and include a guided lab manual. In fact, the modules I recorded for the lab this Summer were done in one of my physical testbeds and then converted to these simulations.
The lab manual for HOL-1706-SDC-6 includes modules and lab simulations for the following:
In addition, we’ve included a ton of extra education contents about the architectue in the lab. Such as architecture detail and diagrams that you can refer to during the lab. Or, if you like, you can just jump to the simulation straight away.
Don’t Have Time to Take the Lab or a Visual Learner?
I recognize that some individuals may not either have time to take the lab or simply prefer to learn in more visual way. With that in mind, I took the same simulations and created demo videos for each of the modules. And they’re available, now.