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Community Warrior: Cheers to 10 Years

*With the below announcement, nominations are now open for the next Community Warrior*

Please join me in congratulating VMware Technology Network’s newest Community Warrior. This man is a jack-of-all-VMware products, dedicated to sharing his knowledge with others, and well known throughout the communities… @a.p.… Congratulations!!

André has several reasons to be proud of his involvement on VMTN. I will take the liberty to name a few…

  • May 18 André celebrated 10 years of membership on VMTN
  • He holds the #1 spot on the All-Time Communities Leaderboard
  • He has achieved both vExpert and User Moderator status several years in a row
  • His peers, for example @Wila who nominated him, speak of his knowledge and selflessness…

He’s the real warrior as he is able to – and does – help out all across the board with the most advanced topics. He has an incredible amount of knowledge and is very good at getting problems solved.”

The facts outlined above speak volumes, check out what André had to say for himself:

K: How were you originally introduced to communities and what inspired you to stay involved?

A: I subscribed to VMTN after moving to a new company – a VMware partner – almost exactly 10 years ago. For the first ~2 years I used communities as a resource to learn and search for help. Inspired by all these great people on VMTN, like Troy, Ulli, Woody, Brian, Wil, and many others, I started contributing, and I still enjoy helping people around the globe, no matter whether it’s a newbie question, or an issue which requires advanced troubleshooting. Another reason for me to stay active in the communities is that I’ve been a user moderator several years now.

K: What have you gained through your involvement with VMTN?

A: Short version: Knowledge and friends!

Long version: VMTN is one of the most active communities that I’m aware of. As an IT consultant it’s important for me to be up to date. Vendor documentations usually describe how things are supposed to work, but the communities also contain a lot of information about issues, and possible fixes, quite often prior to the knowledge base. It’s always great if users provide feedback once their issues are resolved. Over the years, quite some users contacted me to say thanks. What more could one want?

K: What is your area of expertise when it comes to VMware products?

A: My main focus is on server and client virtualization, i.e. vCenter Server, ESXi, Horizon View. In most cases my customer projects include setting up the required servers, networking, SAN, storage, and backup too. I’m also familiar with several other VMware products, but cannot focus on a single vendor’s products.

K: How did you become so well versed in the technical depths of so many products?

A: I’ve always been interested in technologies, and spend a lot of time reading documentations, KB articles, and community posts as well as “playing” with the products in my test lab. I also attended a few trainings at the beginning, and learned a lot from colleagues. It’s certainly also a matter of time, and experience to get the technical depth. I also had the opportunity to work as a Technical Editor on Brian Atkinson’s VCP-DCV 5.5 study guide, which “forced” me to deep dive into several product features.

K: What method would you recommend for someone trying to attain your level of knowledge?

A: Simply try to forget a lot of what you learned, and you will soon be on my level ;-)))

Seriously, the method (if it can be called a method at all) is to be interested, work with passion, willing to spend time, reading a lot, talking with others (face-to-face or e.g. on VMTN), setting up a test lab, break and fix. If possible, attend a training to get a good base knowledge on which you can build upon.

Thanks André for the amazing support and content you have added to communities over the past 10 years! Congratulations and Happy Anniversary!

If you’d like to contact André, please reach out to him by messaging him on VMTN: @a.p.

Do you see someone frequently answering questions in your favorite forums? Did someone provide server saving support to you recently at a VMUG or over Twitter? Any community involvement counts. Head to the Community Warrior page to nominate, or email katieb@vmware.com.

Discover VMware Technology Network: 7 Ways to Gain Points

This is the second blog in a series. See the first blog here: VMTN Global Forums

The foundation of VMware Technology Network is peer-to-peer support and engagement. Community is powered by human connection – the warm feeling of helping another person and the satisfaction of collaborating to solve a problem.

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And then there’s the added bonus to participation, the cherry on top, gaining points. The happiness when your answer is marked correct and you can almost hear the points adding up. A little competition to spice things up never hurts, right?

If competition is something you thrive on, and you went to get onto the Weekly, or All-time communities leaderboard (half-way down the homepage), I’m here to help. These are the 7 ways you can gain points on communities:

 

 

  1. Correct Answer – 10 Points. Having an answered marked as correct is the most lucrative way to gain points. Take advantage of the Browse feature to identify unanswered questions. Opt-in to Follow communities you are interested in so you get email notifications & they are added to your My Communities list. Or even bookmark your favorite communities.Screen Shot 2017-05-10 at 3.14.22 PM
  1. Helpful Answer – 6 Points. If you know a partial answer to a question, or a resource that might shed some light, go ahead and post it. An answer doesn’t have to be perfect, a user can mark your response as helpful and you still receive points.
  1. Reply to an Answer – 1 Point. Sometimes you will answer a question and the user will forget to mark it correct. It happens! Sometimes, you have a comment to add, like, “thanks for posting, this was helpful.” Engagement is always rewarded. As a contributor, you will receive 1 point for taking the time to reply to a question.
  1. Create a Document – 1 Point. Did you write a white paper, case study, or a study guide around a VMware product or solution? Post it on communities. Not only are you sharing your knowledge, helping others, and expanding your clout, you gain a point for doing so.
  1. Create a BlogPost – 1 Point. If you don’t host a personal blog, but have something to say, post a blog to your community profile. This is low maintenance blogging, where you’ll receive views, but have very little up-keep. If you do host a blog, post an abstract and a link to your blog on communities. The community’s audience wants to read the technical content being written. Plus, every blog you post gains you a point.
  1. Post a Status Update – 1 Point. This is a lesser known functionality on communities. Every user has the option to follow other users. To follow someone, visit that user’s profile by clicking on their username, or searching their username. When you visit their profile, select Follow in the bottom right corner. Follow Example
  • Make sure you select the option to follow them in your Connections Stream in the Follow dropdown. View your Connections Stream by clicking News in your header. The Connections Stream option will be on the left side-bar. Click and be brought here:Screen Shot 2017-05-11 at 10.49.38 AM
  • From here you will be able to post a status, see recent activity of those you follow, and filter your view. You will also receive notifications in your VMTN inbox (@) when a user you follow posts a status, and vis versa. Here you can post links to cool resources or share exciting news, like just having deployed vSAN, and gain a point.
  1. Have Someone like your Status Update – 1 Point. Always post relevant and technically informative resources. Spam and marketing are discouraged on communities. Getting status likes is all about appealing to your audience. To gain more followers organically, be active consistently on the communities, and promote your activity via social media.

While utilizing these 7 methods, keep in mind that as a community member, one must give to receive. Be sure to always mark answers correct or helpful on your queries, like other user’s status updates, and respond to questions. Visit communities to start gaining points now!

For further information on status/badge levels, gaining points, and gamification visit the Community Rewards Points System FAQ or email the VMTN Community Manager, katieb@vmware.com.

VMware highlights at Dell EMC World 2017

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VMware Unveils IoT Management Solution
– https://www.vmware.com/radius/vmware-unveils-iot-management-solution/
– https://blogs.vmware.com/pulseiot/2017/05/09/introducing-vmware-pulse-iot-center/

Dell EMC VDI Complete Solutions
– https://blogs.vmware.com/euc/2017/05/dell-emc-vdi-complete-horizon.html
– http://virtualgeek.typepad.com/virtual_geek/2017/05/dell-emc-world-2017-vdi-completeready-bundle.html

Delivering Developer-Ready Infrastructure for Modern Application Development
– https://www.vmware.com/radius/dell-emc-world-developer-ready-infrastructure/
– https://blogs.vmware.com/cloudnative/microservices-meets-micro-segmentation-delivering-developer-ready-infrastructure-modern-application-development/

VMware & Google Extend Partnership to Accelerate Adoption of Chromebooks
– https://blogs.vmware.com/euc/2017/05/google-chromebooks-workspace-one.html

Dell & VMware Extend PC Management to the Firmware and BIOS
– http://blogs.air-watch.com/2017/05/dell-vmware-pc-management/#

Multiple announcements/blogs from DellEMC: https://blog.dellemc.com/en-us

On-demand General Session Keynotes: http://dellemcworld.com/live.htm#main=ondemand

Turn the (App) Volume up for our Newest Community Warrior

Congratulations to this week’s VMware Community Warrior: @Ray_Handels. I could write Volumes about our newest 2017 Hall of Famer *pause for laughter* but his activity in the VMware App Volumes Community speaks for itself (1,151 points…).

Not a workstation management expert? Check out this brief video introduction:

Ray was nominated by sachindsharma (featured in the video above) for his involvement within the community, his seat on the App Volumes customer council, and his involvement in testing the latest and greatest App Volume builds as they roll out.

What makes Ray remarkable, is that he maintains a strong relationship upstream, with the VMware product team, and downstream, with customers like himself. He provides support to others in the forums, listens, and constructively communicates to the VMware product teams to improve App Volumes for all users.

Learn a bit more about how Ray manages these relationships…

K: What makes you passionate about VMware App Volumes and answering community questions?

R: I have been in workstation management for over 8 years but haven’t seen anything like App Volumes (formerly known as CloudVolumes) for our environment. The technique and idea, providing the application to the user while he is actually logging in, was a perfect fit for our business model as we never know what user is logging in to what machine.

Also, the writable volume feature enables us to provide users with a virtual machine, but they don’t even know that they are actually using a virtual machine because they get all of their applications and settings. Looking at the applications progress from CloudVolumes 1.8 (yes, we did use that version) to 2.12.1, which we are using now, it’s great to see where the program is going.

K: You have a unique relationship with the VMware App Volumes product team… Tell me a bit about that.

R: We started using the application as one of the first customers worldwide and really believed in it’s technical features. Because the old team was (and still is) very customer driven we had multiple sessions with people like Jason Marshall (product engineering) and Matt Connover about what features we would like to see added to the product, and tested a lot of those features for them. This gave us a unique opportunity to be a part of the building process for App Volumes.

K: How can community members get as involved with our product teams as you are?

R: I’d say the best way to start is to be active on the forums, not only to ask questions and take information, but also to share knowledge with other customers. The larger and more active the user base, the better the products will be for customers and users.

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Thanks Ray!

Contact Ray with any follow-up questions here:

VMTN: @Ray_Handels

LinkedIn: Raymond Handels

Twitter: @raymondhandels

Do you see someone frequently answering questions in your favorite forums? Did someone provide server saving support to you recently at a VMUG or over Twitter? Any community involvement counts. Head to the Community Warrior page to nominate, or email katieb@vmware.com.

VMware at #DellEMCWorld 2017

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Realize What’s Possible: Transforming Cloud, Mobility and Security
Join VMware at Dell EMC World 2017 in Las Vegas (May 8-11), for a week focused on:

  • Hyper-converged Infrastructure
  • Digital Workplace
  • Mobility
  • Security
  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Cloud Foundation, SDDC and Hybrid Cloud Solutions
  • Cross-Cloud Architecture
  • Cloud Management solutions
  • Cloud-Native Applications

VMware Keynote: Realizing the Workforce Transformation
Tues, May 9th, 10 – 11:30am, Pat Gelsinger, VMware CEO
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Watch LIVE online at this time

Breakout Sessions led by VMware

Technology Track
Turbo Charge Your VDI Project With VMware Horizon On VxRail
Mon, May 8, 12-1pm – Marco Polo 703
Wed, May 10, 12-1pm – Delfino 4005
Practical Path To VMware NSX & SDDC
Mon, May 8, 3-4pm – Palazzo O
Wed, May 10, 1:30 – 2:30pm – Delfino 4005
Build An Integrated SDDC Stack With VMware
Tues, May 9, 12-1pm – Delfino 4003
Wed, May 10, 8:30 – 9:30am – Galileo 901

IT Leadership Track
Tackling The Top End User Computing Trends With Desktop Virtualization
Mon, May 8, 4:30 – 5:30pm – San Polo 3403
Convergence Of PC Lifecycle Management And Enterprise Mobility Management
Wed, May 10, 12-1pm – San Polo 3403
Visions Of The Software Defined Data Center
Tues, May 9, 1:30 – 2:30pm – Murano 3203

Code and Modern Apps Track
Photon Platform: Architecture, Use-Cases & Demo
Wed, May 10, 12-1pm – Zeno 4602

View a session catalog listing of ALL VMware related breakout sessions


VMware Booth

Visit our VMware booth (Solutions Expo #1143) for theater presentations every 20 minutes and meet our technical staff in person at any of the booth pods for product demos and Q&A.  The VMware booth team will be offering raffle prizes for attending booth demos and giveaways for visitors.

Theater Presentations [click to enlarge]
booth-theater

LIVE Video Interviews

VMware execs will be sharing highlights, insights and Q&A during interviews from the show. These interviews will be streamed LIVE and made available via recording on our VMware TV YouTube channel following the conference.

theCUBE (watch the live stream)
Mon, 5:30 pm PT: Narasimha Krishnakumar, Director, Product Mgmt, VMware
Tues, 11:30 am PT: Yanbing Li, SVP and GM, Storage and Availability, VMware
Tues, 12 noon PT: Bask Iyer, CIO, Dell EMC and VMware
Tues, 1 pm PT: Pat Gelseinger, CEO, VMware

Dell Technologies TV (watch the live stream)
Mon, 1 pm PT: Ray O’Farrell, EVP and CTO, VMware
Wed, 12:55 pm PT: Ian Mulholland, VP, Dell Tech Solutions, VMware
Wed, 1:15 pm PT: Sanjay Poonen, COO, VMware

icon-socialmedia2  Social Media & Community

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A Certified Community Warrior

*With the below announcement, nominations are now open for the next Community Warrior*

Are you an individual who has achieved a VMware certification in the past 10 years? If so, you may recognize our newest Community Warrior’s handle: @scott28tt. Congratulations to Scott Vessey!

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Scott is a VMware employee who goes above and beyond his call of duty in helping the community. Scott holds over 14,000 community points, with 7,000+ in the Certification community, where he answers questions daily, helping others achieve their VCA, VCP, VCAP, VCIX, and VCDX.

I encourage anyone working towards passing these exams to visit the forums for advice, resources, and content provided by others, like Scott, who have been in your shoes. This information is invaluable.

Thanks for submitting such a well-deserved nomination lilesj!

I had a chance to pick Scott’s brain on behalf of the community…

Tell us a bit about what you do at VMware.

The organization I work for designs, develops, and manages all field-specific training programs, both technical and non-technical, for employees and partners. I’ve worked at VMware for just over 5 years, and my current role is to help the technical pre-sales folks in EMEA be the best at what they do!

I work with EMEA Systems Engineering leadership and managers to help determine who needs to know what, reviewing existing and desired skill levels, and creating and rolling out both corporate-wide and locally-developed training programs.

Ah, so customer certification is not a part of your day-to-day responsibilities. What makes you passionate about helping customers who post in the certification communities?

This goes back to when I worked as a VMware Certified Instructor – I took myself online into the communities and into other forums as an extension of the kinds of discussions that would be had in the classroom with students working towards their certification. I found there were a lot of people online who needed guidance and help – what to me was simple, everyday knowledge, could be very useful for others to understand.

What was the most recent VMware certification you received and what was the first?

Passing the VCP550D exam to recertify my VCP5-DCV, which also extended my VCP4-DCV, VCP3, and my first VMware certification – VCP2

How can our community members contact you with any follow-up questions?

VMTN: @scott28tt

Twitter: https://twitter.com/vmtraining

Blog: http://vmwaretraining.blogspot.com

Email: vmtraining.blog@vmware.com

For more information around VMware certifications, visit the forums, check out the latest VMware Community Podcast with Karl Childs and Eric Nielsen, or visit MyLearn.

Congratulations again Scott – thanks for all of your contributions to VMTN! I speak for the community when I say, thanks for cutting down queries to help so many customers achieve certifications. You are truly a Community Warrior.

Talk Techy – The VMTN Podcast Program

Do you host a podcast around virtualization, storage, networking, or a key VMware subject area? Do you have a favorite podcast about technology? Would you like to explore relevant podcasts around technical topics?

Screen Shot 2017-04-14 at 11.55.00 AM

VMware Technology Network would like to help further connect our 3 million+ members by building and publishing a comprehensive list of favorite community podcasts, for your enjoyment. We are working to build our Podcasts community into said list, but we need your help.

If you host a podcast, or know of a technical podcast involving key VMware topics and would like to share it with the community, you only need to provide the following:

  • Name of podcast
  • Link to podcast
  • A 2-sentence abstract explaining the subject matter
  • Host information
  • Specific topics covered

This information can be submitted here: https://goo.gl/forms/GgM8kuEllYw8gVcL2. Any podcast submitted may be subject to promotion through VMTN and vExpert social channels.

Go ahead, take a minute and submit now; contribute to the education and entertainment of the VMware community.

Follow these channels for updates:

Please reach out to katieb@vmware.com with any questions.

VMworld 2017 US & Europe Blogger Passes

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Each year VMware provides blogger passes to both the VMworld US and the VMworld Europe conferences. The program is simple: if you are a technical blogger or have a publication around Virtualization then you should apply for a complementary blogger pass to one of the conferences. We provide the pass, you provide the transportation and hotel accommodations. The blogger passes are full conference passes so you will still be able to register for sessions just the same as a regular conference pass difference is these are free of charge.

Since passes are limited, we will only provide one pass per person per year. Meaning you can go to either VMworld US in Las Vegas or VMworld Europe in Barcelona. Keep in mind that in the past we have always had more passes to Las Vegas then Barcelona and both are limited. U.S. Limit is 50 blogger passes while the Europe conference is limited to 35 blogger passes.

Key Dates:

  • April 12th – Blogger Pass Applications Open
  • May 12th – Blogger Pass Applications Close
  • June 2nd – Blogger Pass Allocation & Announcement
  • June 12th – Early Bird Registration Closes

Not everyone will be chosen for a blogger pass since the passes are limited and I’m sure we will see a tremendous response this year. If plans change please email cromero at vmware.com with the cancelation so we can allocate the blogger pass to the next qualified blogger.

Apply for a VMworld Blogger Pass (VMware Employee Are Excluded)

See you at VMworld!

VMTN Gets virtuallyGhetto: Community Warrior #4

With the below announcement, nominations are now open for winner #5

It is my pleasure to announce the newest VMware Technology Network Community Warrior Badge is being awarded to one of VMware’s very own, William Lam.

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Congratulations William! @Lamw is well-known for his blog, virtuallyGhetto, but has also been actively contributing to VMTN for almost 10 years. He has earned nearly 25,000 points in this time and attained the Guru badge, consistently supporting others in their endeavors to achieve automation. He has been instrumental in helping the VMware {code} developer program take-off, presents at VMUGs all over the world, and has been a vExpert since the start of the program.

In exploring his online presence, and reading the wonderful nominations I received for him from @LucD, @arielsanchezmor, and @Nscuola, who described William’s following as “cult-like,” I decided I needed to find out more about the man behind the scripts first-hand.

I had the chance to ask him a few questions…

K:   William, you are a very decorated community member, you were just named one of the Top 50 Overall VMware Influencers this year, and you’ve been a vExpert for all 8 years – why and how did you start as a VMware evangelist?

W: The evangelism was really a by-product of the work I had been doing over the years rather than a specific goal I had in mind. Like many in the VMware Community, my career started out as a regular Systems Administrator and at the time, I was supporting a mix of Linux/UNIX and VMware-based infrastructures. Having worked for several large Enterprises, I was exposed to a multitude of challenges which gave me a great opportunity to learn about news things and solve some really hard problems.
I am a huge believer in sharing what you have learned so that others can build on top of that knowledge and do even greater things. This constant learning and sharing of VMware knowledge has always been something I enjoyed and as I mentioned earlier, the evangelism for VMware and their solutions just sort of happened naturally.

K: Very cool! I’m sure a lot of our readers can relate. How did you get to where you are today – with almost 17,000 followers on Twitter and one of the most popular blogs in the community?

W: To be perfectly honest, I still ask myself that every day. I think for me personally; I have always enjoyed learning about new things and sharing that back with the community whether that is explaining a complex topic or building creative solutions to solve real customer problems. I think being passionate about what you do really helps, regardless if you are the #1 blogger or 2,013th blogger. Find that one thing you really love and just keep at it, you may not see it right away, but it will pay dividends in the future in ways you cannot even imagine.

K: That’s great advice. What has your passion led you to lately… What are you currently working on?

W: I had just recently finished a fun little project with my good friend Alan Renouf called USB to SDDC which we also got to present for the first time in public at both the Sydney and Melbourne VMUG a couple of weeks ago. The idea is quite simple, how cool would it be if you could simply plug in a USB key into a server and have automatically provision and configure ESXi, the vCenter Server Appliance and vSAN without any additional user interaction? That is what Project USB to SDDC is all about. You can find more details in this blog post here: http://www.virtuallyghetto.com/2017/04/project-usb-to-sddc-part-1.html

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Do you have questions for William?  Reach out to him:

Over Twitter: @lamw

On VMTN: @lamw

Check out his blog: http://www.virtuallyghetto.com/

And for fun, his video of a 109-mile bike ride for charity he participated in: https://vimeo.com/106775852

Then be sure to submit your nominations for Community Warrior #5. Who has stood out in your favorite community lately? What warrior has been knocking down questions left and right? Contact the Community Manager @KTbradley on VMTN or through email at katieb@vmware.com to nominate.

Discover VMware Technology Network – Global Forums

Discover VMTN is a blog series that will bring to light the features and functionality within the communities platform that are lesser known, but incredibly useful. This week we start with…

VMTN Global Forums by Language

VMware has offices in 20+ countries, vmware.com has 30+ localized sites, but last month, VMware Technology Network had only a few scatted forums dedicated to enabling peer-to-peer conversations for our global customers.

That gap has been filled with the launch of VMTN Global Forums.

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Communities are an integral part of being a VMware customer. When a customer buys, deploys, or builds on a VMware product, they become a part of the VMware Technology Network, or as our bigger community ecosystem is sometimes called, the vCommunity. VMTN Global Forums by Language now provides a platform to share knowledge, resources, opinions, and gain support, for customers worldwide.

These Forums each have a committed moderator who regulates content to ensure that there is no third-party advertising, and that VMTN’s Code of Conduct is maintained. Check out our list of new Forums and their moderators:

French: @LucD ; @FranckRookie

Italian: @ldelloca

Polish: @inleo

Russian: @AntonVZhbankov

Spanish: @dquintana

Brazilian Portuguese: @rcporto

Japanese: @gowatana

Arabic: @MRoushdy

German: @wila ; @peetz ; @schepp ; @a.p.

Turkish: @ademyetim

Indonesian:@bayupw

So now it comes down to this… Did you deploy a VMware product today? How? Are you upgrading your vSphere from 5.5 to 6? Have you? Head to the forums and engage, whether it’s answering discussions or starting them – from where ever you are in the world.