Your Favorite VMworld Memories, Moments and Learnings

Since the first conference in 2004 to this year’s digital event—and many memorable years in between—VMworld has served as a technology news making event, learning hub, meeting spot, and concert destination. We asked customers in the Champions community for their favorite memories and learnings, and here’s what they shared.

What will this year bring? Register for VMworld 2021, Oct. 5-7.

Memorable moments: Make new friends, and keep the old

Meeting other curious technology experts is a huge part of VMworld—here’s what you said about your memories of networking and socializing.

  • My first VMworld was also when I discovered that while sessions, keynotes and exhibits (read: swag) are cool, the best part is the people.
  • Best memory of VMworld: During the last in-person VMworld I met a few people and that’s why I decided to became a VMUG leader.
  • Talking to random people about vSphere, vSAN and other technologies and hearing their experiences with them is invaluable.
  • Being able to sit down and just chat with fellow customers sometimes helps find other ways of doing things.
  • Meeting the people behind the phones from Business-Critical Support (BCS) that helped us with software requirements. It’s nice to be able to see the people behind the name.
  • Taking part in the Odyssey challenge
  • The Nerds With Appliances session with William Lam
  • My favorite memory is my first VMworld in 2013 in SFO. Enormous letters spelling out “VMworld” started to be draped with selfies, I remember thinking the wall would never get covered. On the last day the letters and the wall behind were totally covered. Nothing prepared me for the energy 25,000 VMware geeks could create.

[Are you missing the fun of in-person swag? Enter to win this year’s backpack]

Mind, blown: favorite firsts and features

VMworld has long been a hot spot for learning, growing and sharing knowledge—here are some favorite memories of moments of inspiration and accomplishment.

  • The first presentation of vSphere Fault Tolerance (FT) by Mendel Rosenblum [in 2007].
  • Hands-on Labs, the wonder that started at VMworld and has grown to be a remarkable learning tool.
  • Being asked to be a speaker for a session and picking up, then displaying, my speaker pin
  • Bumping into people who turn out to be authors of popular blogs that you have relied on for years.
  • My first VCP exam was passed during VMworld in 2009 at San Francisco—a great moment for me.
  • The vBrownbag sessions always have some great talks and real-world examples.  They’re great when you can’t find a session or have time between sessions.
  • Being totally blown away by Alan Renouf’s VR demo
Alan Renouf’s VR demo in 2017

All work and no play makes a dull VMworld

It can’t all be sessions and workshops—there’s also plenty of time for giveaways, free swag, and of course, the concerts.

  • I managed to pass my VCP-DCV cert, but I would not recommend taking a VCP the morning after an after-show party.
  • Winning an Oculus Go with VMware Home Lab
  • Best lunch during VMworld? In Las Vegas, a lunch offered by VMWARE Canada at Picasso restaurant in the Bellagio hotel.
  • One of my favorite moments was the 5K run on the Golden Gate Bridge during one VMworld in San Francisco.
  • One of my favorite booths to get some rest at VMworld? The VMware Customer Champions booth
  • The concerts are always great—I’ve seen Billy Idol, Imagine Dragon, and many other artists.
  • There’s always time for a swag-stroll and for the many social moments to top it all off!
  • Peter Björk at VMworld 2019 with the “‘VM’WORLD’S OKAYEST PRESENTER” t-shirt
Peter Bjork presents at VMworld 2019

Star gazing—tech giants and celebrity sightings

You never know who you’ll meet at the show…

  • The time I ran into a group of Star Wars storm troopers coming out of an elevator!
  • One of my best souvenirs at VMworld was a great discussion with Michael Dell during the VMUG party
  • Meeting Pat Gelsinger in person and getting a picture at the Champions booth
  • One of my favorite memories is from the Champions group—I got to sit in the front row for the morning keynotes at VMworld and it was the greatest group of people sitting up there with me.
  • Meeting Danica Patrick in 2008 in Las Vegas was really great! The absolute best memories are from the hall crawl nights.
  • In recent times, when Pat Gelsinger explained how VMware helped organizations during this pandemic COVID-19 situation.
  • The biggest moment for me was the first General Session I attended at VMworld 2013. I was absolutely blown away by the size and scale of what I was part of
  • My first VMworld was Las Vegas in 2018 and while doing labs, CEO Pat Gelsinger strolled into the area and I got to take a picture with him and chat for just a minute. Pretty cool. 
  • Being at VMworld Barcelona in 2018
VMworld Barcelona 2018

Champions is a vibrant community where customers engage with peers, speak to experts and access exclusive content. Along the way they earn points and redeem rewards, grow their professional network and share feedback about their VMware experiences. Join us!