Well after an incredibly tense time, mainly due to the time difference between the US and the UK, I woke up last Saturday morning to find I had received the email saying I was awarded vExpert 2018. This is my third year as a vExpert and I’m thrilled and honoured to receive it. It’s even more special when VMware released the following stats and I discovered that there are 144 vExpert’s here in the UK so I’m a member of a very small club indeed!
There was a delay on the result this year and for some reason I had the feeling that I wasn’t going to make it. Last year was a hard year for me in my personal life, and when it came to VMworld I was a bit disillusioned. Firstly after the Mandalay Bay shootings I lost my desire to go to Vegas, secondly when I was at VMworld in Barcelona I had my pocked picked just before I came home and it left me feeling vulnerable.
However spring is the time for new starts, and I intend to start by embracing my third vExpert with the honour and respect it deserves. So more blogging, cloudcred, studying and VMUG is in order. My passion for all things VMware is growing again and I’m thinking about which VMworld I would like to attend subject to any sponsorship and my finances. It’s going well so far:
- I have earnt my 10th VCA Digital Business Transformation, two weeks ago
- I’m currently studying to get through my foundation exam towards my VCP
- Next week I will be attending the 2nd London VMUG meeting of the year.
To find out more about the program see the official announcement here.
Over the last couple of months I’ve started to listen to the VMware Community Podcasts. These are every Wednesday at 12:00pm Pacific time, which currently equates to 8pm BST here in the UK (7pm in GMT). Latest topics have included vROps 6.6, vSan 6.6, code exchange and vRA 7.3. The Podcast is hosted by Eric Nielsen, one of the nicest guys I’ve had the pleasure of meeting at the last couple of VMworld’s, and he is so instrumental in all community activities from the podcast to VMTN, Cloudcred and the vExpert program.
The VMware Community Podcasts have been running for nine years now which I think is a major achievement if you think where we were with this kind of technology nine years ago!
Initially I was introduced to the VMware Community Podcasts through my addiction to Cloudcred, but lately I have noticed a change in my behaviour, I’m becoming more interested in the podcast and finding out the next subject content and I find myself looking forward to Wednesday nights.
How to Listen
The podcast is hosted on TalkShoe and to listen to the podcast its quite straightforward. Just click the logo below and then click the link to listen live or to the last recording. Alternatively if you want to download it and listen to it say in the car there are 407 past editions to download and listen to at the same location.
How to take part
Using the web client there is an interface to listen and a chat window where you can ask questions and Eric is always looking for questions for the guests, but I was intrigued how I could dial in.
TalkShoe has a phone dial in but I think the phone charges would be prohibitive. It also has a VOIP dial in which sounded like a low cost option, but I struggled to find a way to dial in for free. TalkShoe has a classic client and the ShoePhone which I assumed was the way to go but I found it unstable. So I reached out to TalkShoe and joined a live support session and they suggested I use the X-Lite client. This allows you to dial in for free from the UK.
There is an excellent link on their website “Use X-Lite to Call Into TalkShoe on a Windows PC” https://support.talkshoe.com/customer/en/portal/articles/2596427-use-x-lite-to-call-into-talkshoe-on-a-windows-pc?b_id=14206
So if you’re interested in all things VMware why not take a listen, and if you want the opportunity to ask some of the top VMware people some questions then why not dial in on a Wednesday night, after all its all about the community.
Today is a special day for me, I’ve been awarded vExpert 2017 from VMware and I’m so thrilled to make the list again, this being my second year as a vExpert.
To see the full list of vExperts and find out more about the program see the Announcement here.
I believe that becoming a vExpert is all about the community, and this last year I have tried to really get to know the people out there, and have now made new friends at the London VMUG as well as led the CloudCred team on the charge up the leader board. I’ve set questions for Cloudcred, Attended many events, all the UK London VMUG events, Airwatch and EUC events, VMworld 2016 Europe and the UK VMUG usercon. I used to be shy and intimidated by talking to people at these type of events but by taking the jump to get involved has been so rewarding for me, meeting people, seeing then present and chatting over food and drink has been inspirational to me.
I’m really looking forward to continuing my journey with both VMware and the London VMUG and seeing where it takes me, only last week I was having vBeers with my good friends Chris Bradshaw and our very own London VMUG leader Dave Simpson
I’ve met a number of great people who have supported me on this journey and hopefully Ive supported them on their journey’s, far too many people to mention here (but I will try) so a big thanks to The London VMUG team, The Open Homelab project The Open Techcast team, (hope to be a podcasting guest soon guys)
The following people for inspiring me (in no particular order)
A really special mention must go to NoellGrier @CloudCredGeek who as the Cloudcred admin must be really sick of all my emails about bugs, suggesting improvements, problems with tasks and why I can’t complete any tasks at the moment!
Whilst working on a call with Microsoft this week they needed a full memory dump from a server.
The windows server wasn’t being particularly cooperative with running a program to make it blue screen and produce a complete memory dump so the support guy advised me of a rather cool way to get my memory dump.
Basically you can snapshot, or in my case suspend the server, then using a cool fling from VMware called vmss2core you can take a copy of the suspend file (VMSS) and convert this file to be a core dump file.
What’s more the vmss2core tool can produce core dump files for:
- The Windows debugger (WinDbg)
- Red Hat crash compatible core files
- A physical memory view suitable for the Gnu debugger gdb
- Solaris MDB (XXX)
- Mac OS X formats
So to run the file you simple point vmss2core.exe at the VMSS file you have copied off your ESXi host and it will convert it for you.
To run the file you simply type vmss2core -W .vmss
There are different options depending on what format you want the dump file in.
For more information see the following PDF snapshot2core_technote
So in my case I entered vmss2core -W D:\memorydump\suspendfile.vmss
And just 6 minutes later it had taken my 16GB suspend file and created a 16GB memory dump.
My biggest problem was finding a place where I could:
- Copy my 16GB suspend file to.
- Have sufficient space to create another 16GB memory dump file.
In the end I simply added a new 40GB disk to a server temporally to allow me to save my suspend file, convert it and upload it to Microsoft.
To download the Fling simply go to https://labs.vmware.com/flings/vmss2core
The instructions can be found http://www.vmware.com/pdf/snapshot2core_technote.pdf
Don’t forget as it’s a fling to go back and check for updates regularly, the current version was dated January the 13th so just three weeks ago.
Well day 2 started with a keynote from Pat Gelsinger, the tagline of this year’s VMworld is “be tomorrow” and he summarised this as “tomorrow is about people not customers” which I kind of get. Currently the latest buzzword is digital transformation and show me a company which is not doing some initiative which is based around digital transformation. Digital transformation is combining industry and technology together in new and exciting ways, and Pat went on to announce several key points with many demonstrations, videos and a cast of supporting presenters.
- In 2006 Amazon web services (AWS) was launched and the term ‘Cloud Computing” was born. Today we have AWS as a new VMware cloud partner. Joining AWS and VMware together brings the best of both worlds, the leader in virtualization and the leader in cloud computing together. It’s frighteningly simple to and fast to spin up a VMware environment on AWS. For VM Migrations Simply vMotion a server from your internal private cloud to the AWS cloud. No replatforming or downtime is needed you simply use NSX to extend the network.
- Today VMware Launched vSphere ESXi 6.5 with over 100 updates and enhancements.
- Today VMware Launched VSAN 6.5.
- VMware announced cross cloud services, a new SAAS offering that will allow you to migrate hosts to Multiple cloud providers. This will be with us in 2017.
If you want to go and see the whole keynote for yourself and see Pat in action you will find it here.
So after that I went to see a couple of #Brownbag sessions from a couple of the guys from the UK London VMUG that I know.
Amit Panchal “Career Disruption 101 Brand is King”, this was an interesting look at how you can promote youself to keep your skills up to date and manage your own brand in the community and world of social media.
Ather Beg “Work / Life Balance for the “Elderly” IT Professional”, again this was some very personal tips from Ather on how to claim some time back in your life for the important things like family.
After that I naturally started the days CloudCred tasks and I found most of the team all working on labs in the Hands-on Lab area so we did our bit to keep the team at the top.
Then it was time to leave and head off to the vExpert party, I must say I found this a very enjoyable evening in a great bar and I must thank Corey Romero for all he does for us.
Whilst there I found myself with Gareth Edwards and Kev Johnson and ended up doing an interview for OpenTechCast with Noell Grier about cloudcred.
I would just like to say a big thank you to all of those people who took a few seconds out of their day to vote for my blog in the recent Top 100 vBlog nominations. Last week I was stunned to find out that I had made 92 on the list!
I only put myself forward hoping to get a few extra hits and followers I didn’t believe that my personal blog about Cloudcred, certifications and event reviews would every receive that many votes.
I will say now I have no idea who the 47 people were who voted for me, no one told me if they did, but there may be one or two cloudcred players who took advantage of task 3297: “Vote! Top vBlog for 2016” and voted for me so again a big thanks to all of you.
To see the full list of bloggers and their pages check out the results here and again a big thanks to Eric Siebert @ericsiebert of vSphere Land for organising the Top vBlog and the sponsors VM Turbo.
Today sees the launch of the Open Homelab project http://openhomelab.org/ this is the brainchild of Alex Galbraith @alexgalbraith and was conceived at the last #lonVMUG meeting.
So If you’re looking to build a lab at home or in the cloud and need some advice, or you already have a lab and feel you can contribute then please take a look at a http://openhomelab.org/ I hope that I can make some contribution in the future.
Alex and the team have completed an awesome job in just a few weeks. A special mention to Chris Bradshaw @aldershotchris and Gareth Edwards @GarethEdwards86 although I know there are others.
And Finally If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you check out the openhomelab.org.