Over the past 12 months, VMware NSX momentum has continued to grow, as we’ve added VMware NSXnew platform capabilities, expanded our partner ecosystem, and of course, had more than 250+ customers purchase NSX for deployment. And as interest in VMware NSX has grown with both customers and IT professionals looking to evolve their careers by adding certification in network virtualization, one of the most common questions that we get is “How can I get started with NSX?.”

We understand that there is a strong demand for individuals and organizations to get their hands on the NSX technology. Many of you are working towards your initial VCP-NV certification. Others of you are exploring NSX as a way to improve your organization’s agility and security while reducing overall costs.

Here are three ways individuals and companies can get started with NSX.

Complete NSX: Install, Configure, Manage Training – for individuals on the NSX career path, we offer “NSX: Install, Configure, Manage” training.  We are offering ICM training as part of our On-Demand Curriculum, or you can take a 5-day instructor led course. Here is the detailed course description and class schedule. ICM training is a pre-requisite for VMware NSX certification. Once ICM training is complete, individuals will be submitted for approval to receive access to the NSX bits for your own lab two weeks later. Please note VMware export restrictions apply. We’re running a promo right now that allows you to get a voucher for 50 percent off your VCP exam when you attend this class before December 19.

Attend VMware NSX Exploration – if you are a customer interested in learning more about how VMware NSX can help your business. VMware and select reseller partners are hosting NSX exploration sessions. This formal 2-day training will help you get prepared for network virtualization. These are invitation-only sessions for organizations looking at potentially moving forward with an NSX proof-of-concept. Space is limited and attendance is on a first come, first served basis.  To inquire about NSX exploration, speak with your VMware SE or account manager to see if there is one in your area. Once you complete NSX Exploration, you will be ready to work with your VMware SE to get NSX installed for your proof of concept.

Purchase a VMware NSX Starter Kit – If you’ve already decided that virtualizing your network with VMware NSX is best way from you to improve your business agility and security while reducing costs, and you want to get started with a small-scale installation to prove out the technology, VMware can offer you a 50 VM starter kit on a term-based license.  Again, speak with your VMware Account Manager or SE, and they can work with you to purchase and install the starter kit and you’ll be on your way.

If you are not ready to make VMware NSX part of your career path, and not sure how VMware NSX might benefit your business, the Hands-On Labs (HOL) are still the best way for you to get familiar with the technology. VMware NSX is by far the most popular HOL right now. More than 73,000 NSX hands-on-labs have been accessed in 2014, with more than 20,000 of those labs taking place since the week of August 24, 2014 during VMworld 2014.  We currently offer three VMware NSX Hands-On Labs:

  • HOL-SDC-1403: VMware NSX Introduction
  • HOL-SDC-1425: VMware NSX Advanced Lab
  • HOL-SDC-1424: VMware NSX in the SDDC

2015 promises to be another great year for NSX, and we hope that you will make it a keystone of the strategic conversations you are having with and across IT leadership in the context of adopting a software-defined data center approach.