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IT Confessional Series: Virtualize Your SMB IT Environment and Never Miss Another Star Trek Marathon Again!

By: Andy the Angry IT Guy

Editor’s note: This is the third in a series of posts we’ll be running from “Andy,” an anonymous IT administrator working for a mid-sized organization located somewhere in the American Midwest. In his previous post, Andy explored the features of VMware Go’s IT Advisor and why he doesn’t like going to bars, among other topics.

Today, Andy has chosen to share a recent instant message exchange he had with his friend and former colleague Pratik the Petulant IT Guy, who runs IT for a separate mid-sized organization located somewhere in the American Midwest, about the merits of virtualization for small- and mid-sized businesses.

Andy_from_Alderaan: hey pratik

HaxerPrat1k: hey andy

Andy_from_Alderaan: how goes the battle?

HaxerPrat1k: let’s see – ive had to troubleshoot for an outlook error message that has popped up on no less than 8 separate machines so far this morning. and its not even 10am yet.

HaxerPrat1k: oh, and get this… i  also had to help someone from finance get a piece of bread out of his hard drive. no joke, he thought it was a toaster…

Andy_from_Alderaan: lol, i don’t doubt that for a second.

Andy_from_Alderaan: last week, our vp of marketing screamed at me for 10 minutes over the fact that his computer had suddenly, mysteriously crashed

Andy_from_Alderaan: only to eventually realize that he’d dimmed the screen to its lowest resolution, and it had in fact been on the entire time… people sometimes.

Andy_from_Alderaan: anyway, are u still coming over later?? there’s a deep space 9 marathon on starting at 5, and starz is airing the unrated version of swordfish at 10. its like christmas came early this year!

HaxerPrat1k: you know id love to, but i cant. i’m going to be at the office really late tonight – in the middle of a big software update here.

HaxerPrat1k: on that note, i was actually going to ask if you would be able to swing by my house to feed my 6 cats on your way home from work.

HaxerPrat1k: i figure i’ll be here until at least 10 or 11pm tonight, manually checking whether each and every employee has downloaded the new outlook patch.

Andy_from_Alderaan: that sounds brutal pratik, im sorry. of course i can feed your cats though.

HaxerPrat1k: appreciate it. have fun without me tonight 🙁

Andy_from_Alderaan: not to rub it in here, but my office downloaded the same patch last week – and i was home before 6 that day.

HaxerPrat1k: how’d u pull that off??

Andy_from_Alderaan: easy – the entire process was automated!

HaxerPrat1k: o rly?

Andy_from_Alderaan: i know you’ve been skeptical of virtualization in the past, but you’ve really gotta get with the times here!

HaxerPrat1k: this coming from the guy who still wears his ratty “the truth is out there” tshirt like it’s 1997…

Andy_from_Alderaan: that’s an incredibly durable tshirt! i resent your insinuations to the contrary.

HaxerPrat1k: whatever.

HaxerPrat1k: point is, i have a hard justifying an expensive new IT purchase + the associated training necessary to run it properly.

HaxerPrat1k: virtualization is an interesting tech for sure, but i don’t exactly have an army of IT drones to help ensure things run smoothly.

HaxerPrat1k: plus, i have a hard enough time meeting standard SLAs as it is.

Andy_from_Alderaan: have you looked into vmware go pro?

HaxerPrat1k: no

Andy_from_Alderaan: well you should.

Andy_from_Alderaan: it comes in an as-a-service model, but offers the same benefits as virtualization. it automates a TON of deployment, management, and optimization for virtual, physical, and hybrid environments.

Andy_from_Alderaan: including patch updates 🙂

HaxerPrat1k: interesting… automation does sound good, especially as im about to miss ANOTHER deep space 9 marathon because of tedious manual labor.

HaxerPrat1k: what about SLAs though?

Andy_from_Alderaan: it offers proactive recommendations that help reduce downtoime. it’s totally customized to your IT environment, too!

Andy_from_Alderaan: it helps with network scanning, missing patches, and asset management, among other areas.

HaxerPrat1k: that does sound like a good setup – maybe enough to finally convince the boss that virtualization isn’t some evil, Orwellian device of the future.

Andy_from_Alderaan: honestly, i was just as skeptical as you were at first. there’s definitely a difference in considering virtualization for SMBs vs. large enterprises.

Andy_from_Alderaan: but vmware go has an intuitive layout that can be customized to fit the specs of a given (smaller) IT environment. it’s made my life a lot easier, and i’ve barely scratched the surface yet.

Andy_from_Alderaan: it’s just too bad you don’t have it for tonight. i’ll be in trekkie heaven while you’re in IT hell.

HaxerPrat1k: 🙁

HaxerPrat1k: say hello to my 6 cats for me. and enjoy deep space 9 / swordfish marathon.

Andy_from_Alderaan: will do, sorry to miss you tonight! fyi, there’s a star trek next generation marathon next week –  so you should have more than enough time to deploy vmware go in the meantime 🙂