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PernixData FVP Interactive Demo Guide

By on April 26, 2015

As a consultant, a demo environment is quite essential, when you want to demonstrate solutions to customers or your own colleagues. PernixData recently released their own online demo environment, which you can easily use for 1 hour. Perfect when you want to quickly browse through the looks of FVP, and show some graphs, when you’re doing presentations etc.

The first step you need to do is to visit this webpage:
http://www.pernixdata.com/fvp-interactive-demo

Then you simply hit the “Generate Credentials” button, which will give you a username and password, to access a live environment for 1 hour.

Once you’re logged in to the web-client, you’re presented with the following 3 clusters:

clusters

 

As you can see, there are 3 different clusters to choose from. One with SSD’s, one with PCI-E’s and one with RAM as acceleration source.

ssd1

 

The SSD cluster consist of two SSD’s (an Intel DC S3700 and a Kingston E100), one in each ESXi host. Once you take a look at the performance graph for this cluster, it shows a nice accelerated “VM Observed” graph:

ssd2

 

Below 2ms on a couple of SSD’s is decent. Let’s check out the PCI-E cluster.

pcie1

 

A Micron P320h and an Intel P3600 is what’s used as acceleration media’s in this cluster. Now let’s have a look at the performance graph:

pcie2

 

You can easily notice the consistent low latency on the “VM Observed” graph, which in general is located aroung 1ms.
The last cluster uses RAM as an acceleration source (“DFTM-Z” cluster):

ram1

 

Taking a quick look at the “Manage” tab, you can see that they’ve used 32GB of RAM from each host. Let’s head over to the FVP “Performance” tab:

ram2

 

Now how about that for a show off? πŸ™‚ Consistently sub-millisecond latency on the VM, while the Datastore periodically grows to 50ms.

As you can see, this nice little live-demo environment can be pretty useful. You can use it yourself to get more comfortable when playing around with the FVP software, or you can use the environment to show your customers/clients in your presentations.

The value of having a local VMUG community

By on March 2, 2015

vmugheader

November last year, my fellow VMUG leader Christian Mohn, arranged Norways first VMUG meeting in Bergen and we’ve been having 3 meetups after that as well, in Oslo, Trondheim and Bergen (for the second time). Christian recently published a nice article on how to start a VMUG, so I figured I would contribute on that subject and try to dive into some of the values of having a local VMUG community, which is exactly the reason why we finally started one here in Norway!

First of all, let’s not forget that VMUG’s are as social (at least that’s what I think) as they are technical focused. You definitely wish to have some great speakers providing aspects on software and solutions, that are valuable and informative to the audience, but let’s not forget about the vBeers and pizza’s at the end πŸ™‚

Attending a local VMUG community gives you the ability to talk to other VMware users, partners etc that can help you to answer your tricky little questions. There is no doubt that you will find those highly skilled “VMware-nerds” that do have the answers you are looking for. Not only will you find the most skillful ones, you’ll also find the local ones, those with the familiar face that you feel much easier talking to at first. A VMUG meeting often consists of partner employees, and/or VMware staff. As a user, those employees are the people you often know beforehand from other situations, such as presentations, meetings, installations etc.

Here in Norway we always try to have at least one “customer-case” presentation. This gives everyone a chance to tell something good (or bad) from any experience they’ve had in their virtualized environment. Real-life cases tends to be very popular as other users relate to them quite easily, but also to the fact that it gives everyone a chance to have a “show-off” of their own environment as well.

Competence-vise, there is no doubt that you should surround yourself with people that are higher skilled than yourself, simply because you’ll learn a lot from it! Which again proves that VMUG is an important arena if you seek knowledge. Do you want to become VCP, VCAP/VCIX or VCDX certified, surround yourself and talk with others that already have achieved those certifications. Or perhaps you are aiming for a vExpert-title? Doing presentations and hosting VMUG’s is (as you can see) as important for other VMware-users as it is for you.

Not only focusing towards individuals, how about other vendors? What is a better way than reaching out to different VMUG-meetings worldwide to share and present third-party solutions, that are very well integrated into VMware’s ecosystem? Awesome for vendors, awesome for the audience, which again have the benefit of learning new and cool “stuff” that are not coming directly out of the VMware fabric.

Last, but not least, it is valuable for VMware. VMUG is an independent organization with over 100.000 members world-wide. The fact that most of these VMUG-meetings tend to spread VMware’s message in some way, you can imaging how important that is to VMware itself.

vmugosloØivind Ekeberg (@oekeberg, vExpert 14/15) doing the introduction at VMUG Oslo in January

VMware Product Acronyms

By on February 21, 2015

As VMware released the vRealize Suite, some naming conventions where introduced as well. Some of the existing products in the “vSphere-world” got renamed, and some new products came to the market. What I’ve experienced, working as a consultant, is that my customers just don’t follow along anymore when I introduce them to these new acronyms, while still talking about familiar products.

I therefor took my time to summarize some of the most famous products from VMware out there (and some of the less familiar ones), with corresponding acronyms.

And do remember, this is a *product* list, not a feature list. So you will not find acronyms for High Availability, Fault Tolerance or Distributed Resource Scheduler.

Datacenter & Cloud Infrastructure Acronym
vCenter Server vCS
vCenter Server Appliance vCSA
vCenter Update Manager VUM
vCenter Site Recovery Manager SRM
vSphere Replication VR
vSphere Data Protection VDP
vSphere Data Protection Advanced VDPA
vSphere with Operations Management vSOM
vSphere Big Data Extensions BDE
vSphere Storage Appliance VSA
vSphere Management Assistant vMA
vCloud Director vCD
vCloud Connector vCC
VMware Data Recovery vDR
VMware Virtual SAN VSAN
VMware EVO:RAIL n/a
VMware EVO:RACK n/a
Infrastructure & Operations Management Acronym
vRealize Automation vRA
vRealize Business vRB
vRealize Code Stream vRCS
vRealize Operations Manager vROps
vRealize Operations Insight vROI
vRealize Orchestrator vRO
vRealize Hyperic vRH
vRealize Configuration Manager vCM
vRealize Log Insight vRLI
vRealize Application Services vRAS
vRealize Air Compliance vRAC
vCenter Infrastructure Navigator VIN
vCenter Site Recovery Manager SRM
vCenter Converter Standalone n/a
vCloud Air vCA
VMware Integrated OpenStack VIO
Networking & Security Acronym
VMware NSX for vSphere NSX
vCloud Networking and Security vCNS
IT Business Management Acronym
vCenter Chargeback Manager CBM
VMware Service Manager VSM
Desktop & End-User Computing
In the EUC portfolio, there doesn’t exist any acronyms (as far as I know). VMware have standardized their product-line based on the Horizon Suite, with products like; View, Workspace, Mirage, Flex and DaaS instead

Please give me feedback, as I probably and most likely have forgotten some products, or if I have misspelled some of them.

And also, don’t forget to share πŸ™‚

Customer Reactions – New features in vSphere 6

By on February 5, 2015

As you probably (or certainly) would have noticed by now, is that VMware have finally released their newest version of vSphere, version 6. A bunch of new features and also tons of blogs going through the major and minor ones, so I will not going into that much further details.

What I did was to face a few customers of mine with some of the new features, to see their reactions and to get a grasp of what’s the most attractive ones from a customer perspective.

In short, I presented them with the following ones:

  • Virtual Volumes (VVols)
  • vSMP Fault Tolerance
  • Instant Clone
  • Long Distance / Enhanced vMotion
  • Web Client Improvements
  • Content Library

VVols is a feature that has been known for quite a while and didn’t come as a surprise to many. They sort of: “We’ve been waiting for this!”

What really surprised a lot was the Instant Clone feature, which they didn’t expect at all, and enlightened a lot of them with a bunch of use cases, specially for those customers having VDI running environments.

The same goes for Long Distance vMotion. A feature most of the customers thought of as just a “live migration” thing! Well, they don’t see it that way anymore. All of a sudden vMotion can offer a lot more, especially with certain DR cases.

For the next two features I got this “FINALLY!” reaction slammed at my face. vSMP Fault Tolerance with the 4vCPU and 64GB support has certainly been long awaited by many of my customers and also Web Client Improvements with much better responsiveness and faster logins, and even a “Hurray!” for the Recent Tasks pane now being placed at the bottom of the screen.

The last feature, Content Library, was actually received very well. A nice feature, that most of the customers hadn’t really thought of earlier.

So that summarizes some of the reactions on a few of the new vSphere 6 features, Oh… I forgot to mention to them that vSphere 6 isn’t available until the end of March, I just got this “I don’t see the 6.0 version at vmware.com?” email.. Doh! πŸ™‚

VMware Norway VCP Club 2014

By on November 25, 2014

VMware VIP Club

VMware Norway VIP VCP Club is an event primarily focused towards Norwegian VMware consultants/users currently holding VCP-level certifications and above.

I had the pleasure of attending VMware VIP VCP Club back in 2012, which was a great event arranged by VMware Norway, with some famous names, such as Lee Dilworth, Joel Lindberg and Ulf Andreasson.

Taking a look at this years agenda, the 2014 edition looks pretty awesome as well:

13:00-14:15 Multi Cloud Management with vRealize Operations 6 and Automation 6.2 – Henrik Moenster, Cloud Specialist @ VMware Denmark
14:15-14:30 Coffee-break
14:30-15:45 NSX Software Defined Networking & Security – Brian Hestehave, NSX Specialist @ VMware Denmark
15:45-16:00 Coffee-break
16:00-16:45 Software-Defined Storage with VSAN update and VVOL introduction – Roger Samdal, SE @ VMware Norway
16:45-17:00 Hyperconvergence with EVO:RAIL & EVO:RACK – Roger Samdal, SE @ VMware Norway

17:00-19:00 Community building and refreshments

Make sure to register for this event, as I can promise you that you won’t regret it!

Registration: VMware Norway VCP Club 2014

vcpclub2012