By David Davis

The excitement of VMworld 2013 is building! In case you didn’t know, registration is open and the VMworld 2013 content catalog is now available. I’m registered and have started exploring the content catalog so that I know what sessions to register for as soon as the schedule builder is available. Undoubtedly, some of the most exciting sessions there will be around the VMware vCloud products. With the recent webinar about VMware’s upcoming vCloud Hybrid Service (vCHS) and more enhancements to vCloud Director expected in the future, session titles and abstracts may give us clues about the future (it’s happened before).

So what are the best VMware vCloud sessions to attend? I searched for the term “vCloud” and found over 60 sessions that used it in their title or description. Certainly these 60 were selected from hundreds of submissions that discussed vCloud.

Not to slight any of the sessions, but I had to break the list down in some way to make a shorter list of recommendations. In my first pass, I identified 21 vCloud-related session that I personally wish I could attend at VMworld (in reality, I usually only find time to attend a few, but I hope you find time to attend many more.

That being said, based on what I feel are exciting speakers and hot topics, below is my list of 22 “hope you find time to attend all of these” VMworld sessions of 2013:

EUC5862 – From Library to Starship: How vCloud and View Have Created the Most Advanced Learning and Research Vehicle on the Planet
Learn how one of the most technologically advanced libraries in the world uses vCloud and View! Sounds fascinating! By Timothy Mori – Enterprise Operations Manager, NCSU Libraries and Maurice York, NC State University.

NET6390 – Software Defined Networking – Approaches to Network Virtualization
Find out how Cisco sees the future of software defined networking and learn how it relates to vCloud by Balaji Sivasubramanian – Director Product Management, Cisco

OPT5194 – VMware’s Private Cloud – Operations Transformation
Understand how VMware’s own IT department uses VMware private cloud presented by Kurt Milne – Director of CloudOps, VMware and Venkat Gopalakrishnan – Director – IT, VMware.

PHC4783 – How To Build Your Hybrid Cloud and Consume the Public Cloud
Any session by Chris Colotti has got to be awesome, right? In this session Chris and Mike Roy of VMware show you how to build your own hybrid cloud to leverage the public cloud at your company.

vCloud Hybrid Service Jump Start Series (in 5 parts).
I am really interested in this series of hybrid service jump-start sessions! They are:

  • PHC5070 – vCloud Hybrid Service Jump Start Part One of Five: vCloud Hybrid Service: Architecture and Consumption Principles by Massimo Re Ferre’ – Cloud Architect, VMware
  • PHC5409 – vCloud Hybrid Service Jump Start Part Two of Five: vCloud Hybrid Service: Networking and Security Basics by Greg Herzog – Consulting Architect, VMware and Ninad Desai – Sr Product Manager, VMware
  • PHC5488 – vCloud Hybrid Service Jump Start Part Three of Five: vCloud Hybrid Service: Advanced Networking and Security by Greg Herzog – Consulting Architect, VMware and Ninad Desai – Sr Product Manager, VMware
  • PHC5045 – vCloud Hybrid Service Jump Start Part Four of Five: Identifying and Deploying Workloads in vCloud Hybrid Service by Greg Herzog – Consulting Architect, VMware
  • PHC5561 – vCloud Hybrid Service Jump Start Part Five of Five: Deep Dive into Hybrid Cloud Management by Patrick Chang – Product Line Manager, VMware 

Check out the vCloud Blog’s recent post for more details on this series.

PHC5123 – A Parallel Between vCloud Hybrid Service and Amazon Web Services
I believe that the prime competitor of the new vCloud Hybrid Service from VMware is Amazon Web Service (AWS). In this session by Massimo Re Ferre’ – Cloud Architect, VMware – you’ll learn how they stack up.

PHC5204 – vCloud Hybrid Service Customer Panel
Find out first hand how real VMware vCloud Hybrid Service customers are using the service. Didn’t know they had customers yet? Find out what they have to say in this session led by Angelos Kottas – Group Manager, Product Marketing, VMware.

PHC5605 – Hybrid Cloud Today – Introducing vCloud Hybrid Service
Mathew Lodge – VP, Cloud Services Product Marketing and Management at VMware leads this session, providing an introduction to the new vCloud Hybrid Service. Not really sure about how it works, have some questions, or just want to meet Matthew (that’s me)? Attend this session.

PHC5640 – The Story Behind Designing and Building a Distributed Automation Framework for vCloud Hybrid Services
Nick Weaver is a Cloud Automation Architect, VMware and all around super-smart guy. I think that you’ll be fascinated at the level of automation and intelligence built into the vCloud Hybrid Service. I’ll make sure to attend this one!

PHC5679 – Protecting Enterprise Workloads Within a vCloud Service Provider Environment
With so much moving to the cloud, how do you back it up and protect it from disaster? This is a complicated question and I am interested in what VMware has to say in this session by Ian Perez-Ponce – Sr. Product Manager, VMware.

PHC5732 – The Economics of vCloud: Which Cloud Do I Need?
Any IT infrastructure that your company invests in is just that – a business investment that they expect to get a positive financial return on. Sure “the cloud” sounds cool, but is it a smart financial investment for your company? Attend this session to find out! Personally, I’m very interested in this one by Chris Colotti – Senior Technical Marketing Manager, VMware and Roshni Pary – Product Marketing Manager, VMware.

PHC5752 – Data In, Data Out and Data Protected
Veteran virtualization expert and author, Mike Laverick, along with Roshni Pary of VMware cover how to identify and migrate data onto vCloud Hybrid Service, move data back from the cloud to on-premise and keep the data protected. I’ll make sure to be at this session!

PHC5754 – vCloud Hybrid Service – Building Your Business Case for the Move
vCloud Hybrid Service is great for extending your datacenter for both new and existing workloads, now all you need to do is justify it to your boss. In this session, Scott Lowe, vExpert, author, and powerful speaker joins with Tony Brockman – Sr. Product Marketing Manager at VMware – to help you make the business case for hybrid cloud. This is an area of particular interest for me (plus, I wouldn’t miss hearing Scott speak) so I’ll make sure to attend this one!

STO5464 – Leading Edge: Evolving To A Software-Defined Data Center
Always entertaining, fun, and cutting edge – EMC’s Chad Sakac always packs the house. In this session, he’ll talk about how the tipping point where the typical datacenter evolves into the software-defined datacenter.

VSVC4948 – How VMware IT Saves 6-8 Million a Year using VMware vSphere/vCloud Stack
I’m always interested in VMware’s own IT department uses vCloud. In this session, you’ll learn how VMware saves money by using vSphere and vCloud. It’s sure to be a fascinating session by Padmaja Vrudhula and Thirumalesh Reddy, both of VMware.

VSVC5547 – Why Build Your Cloud Infrastructure Using the VMware Software Defined Data Center
Why should you choose VMware vCloud over Microsoft’s cloud solution? In this session by David James, Product Marketing Manager at VMware and Chanda Dani, Product Line Marketing Manager at VMware, you’ll find get the competitive comparison you’ve been looking for (I know I want to see this).

VSVC5931 – PowerCLI What’s New? Administrating with the CLI Was Never Easier
Finally, I wouldn’t miss any session delivered by Alan Renouf – Sr Technical Marketing Architect, VMware. He’ll show you what’s new with PowerCLI and how to make your life easier while managing your vCloud infrastructure. I hope that PowerCLI Man will stop by for a special appearance!

Bonus Session!

Finally, come to my session – VSVC5353 – Mythbusting Goes Virtual! Mattias Sundling of Dell and I will be putting some of vSphere’s most well know facts to the test to either prove them or bust them. This was one of the top sessions of VMworld 2011 and we hope to be in the top 5 again – so register for Mythbusting Goes Virtual and stop by and say hi! We are going to pack the house!


I hope that this guide to some of the best vCloud sessions will help you to plan your VMworld schedule to help you register (and attend) all the best sessions. For me, VMworld is always the most exciting week of the year and this year is looking to be no different. When you’re at the show – please stop me and introduce yourself. Networking with virtualization enthusiasts is what makes VMworld so great!

The @vCloud and @VMwareSP teams will also be providing live coverage for some of the above sessions, so be sure to follow them for live updates from the event. Look forward to seeing you there!

David Davis is a VMware Evangelist and vSphere Video Training Author for Train Signal. He has achieved CCIE, VCP,CISSP, and vExpert level status over his 15+ years in the IT industry. David has authored hundreds of articles on the Internet and nine different video training courses for including the popular vSphere video training package. Learn more about David at his blog or on Twitter and check out a sample of his VMware vSphere video trainingcourse from