Tag Archives: VMUG

The Change Message is on Repeat…I Reckon Evolve! – VMUG UserCon Take Away

Yesterday I attended the Melbourne VMUG UserCon for 2016 and had a great day catching up with community friends, presenting with PernixData and attending other quality sessions. As I listened to Keith Townsend‘s morning Keynote I couldn’t help but think that I had heard one of his core messages around change before…Sure enough not one year earlier at the 2015 Melbourne VMUG UserCon we had John Troyer (@JTroyer) talk about Pivoting to the New IT

…His presentation was based around a change of expectation around what it is to be part of the IT Industry…and even though there are some IT Professionals that will not embrace the shift that’s currently happening…the VMware/vExpert/Virtualization/Cloud Community is at the forefront of driving that change and best positioned to harness the pivot that’s currently on offer.

[Have a read of my 2015 recap here where I go into more detail around John’s talk]

Fast forward back to 2016 and with Keith talking about how he had embraced significant change in his work roles I started to think about how all I have heard over the past couple of years on repeat is that we in the IT Industry need to change or die…or adapt or die.

I’m not doubting the message that’s being drilled into us and without question there are more disruptive technologies and methodologies appearing in the IT Industry almost on a weekly basis. However I almost feel that the message around change is one that is to abrupt..too harsh. And for the IT guys sitting in the audience hearing these messages I feel like it can almost come across as…What the hell can I do? What am I doing?

I saw the tweet below from the Sydney VMUG UserCon and when I referenced it in context to the Melbourne Keynote I thought to myself the message is a little too simplistic.

Why would I give up all the hard work and knowledge that I had worked extremely hard to learn and master over the first 10-15 years of my career in IT. All that I have done previously has allowed myself to evolve to where I am today in a technical and personal sense. If I hadn’t started work on Linux servers configuring BIND or SENDMAIL I wouldn’t have developed an interest for internet messaging which lead me onto working on Hosted Exchange Services which lead me onto working on Hosting Platforms which lead me onto looking into Virtualisation which got me into deploying my first Hyper-V cluster which lead me to get familiar with vSphere and ESX which lead me to Cloud Management Platforms like vCloud Director which now leads me into technologies like Network Virtualization and Hyper Converged Platforms that has in turn exposed me to consuming platforms differently via APIs which now leads me onto the next evolution of my career.

Get where I am going with this?

Don’t feel like you have to change just because…that can be harsh and change is abrupt…you can’t pivot without having your foot on the ground before planting the other…EVOLVE!

P.S I am not having a go at the presenters (or Grant via that Tweet) as I respect them 100% as community leaders and understand the messages around change needs to be heard…I’m trying to portray the message in another light based on how I have interpreted the it…feel free to comment below.

Melbourne VMUG UserCon – Best Virtualisation Event Outside of VMworld!

“Best Virtualisation Event Outside of VMworld!” …now there is a big statement if ever there was one! Without insulting every other VMUG UserCon around the world, what I didn’t add to the blog title was “…in the southern hemisphere”. This will be my third Mebourne VMUG UserCon and without disrespecting Sydney’s VMUG UserCon happening a couple of days earlier the Melbourne event is up there when it comes to quality content, quality presenters and community feel.

The last couple of years I have attended the event in Melbourne I have taken away a lot of great technical and non-technical knowledge back home with me and with keynote speakers the likes of no less than Scott Lowe and Keith Townsend together with industry superstar Chris Wahl and other great local presenters I expect the same for the 2016 edition.

The Agenda is jam packed with virtualisation goodness and it’s actually hard to attend everything of interest with schedule conflicts happening throughout the day…my recommended sessions are listed below:

If you do feel like skipping Chris Wahl’s session at 10:30am I’ll be presenting with Frank Fan from PernixData on Using Infrastructure Analytics to Modernize Storage Management where we will be talking about FVP and Architect and how it’s helped detect bottlenecks in the ZettaGrid Labs as well as help the normalization of production workload performance. 

So though I live in Perth and help run the Perth VMUG I believe Melbourne is the true spiritual home of virutalisation in Australia and this UserCon is not to be missed…so if you are in Melbourne next week try and get down to The Crown Casino to participate, learn and contribute and hopefully we can catch up for a drink.

VMUG – The Power of Community… NIKE!

Yesterday at the long awaited reboot of the Perth VMUG here in Western Australia I chaired a vExpert/vChampion Panel that included Alex Barron, Luke Brown, Luke Dudney and Tim Williams. As a group we collectively felt the community aspect of the VMUGs was missing from the Perth meetings and we pushed hard to replicate other successful VMUGs around the world by having a Community Session as part of the VMUG Agenda.

The idea of the Panel was to try and get the crowd thinking about their own community involvement and the benefits that it can lead to both from a work and personal point of view. We each introduced ourselves, talked about what we did at our day jobs and then talked a little about our experiences on how being part of the VMware community has benefited us since deciding to become more engaged in community activities by embracing programs such as the vExpert and vChampion Programs…Collectively we each acknowledged that we are better off in our careers due to our involvement.

Apart from the technical benefits in being able to bounce ideas and problems off other technically minded people within the community the biggest takeaway I thought was that the people where able to understand that there is more out there than just the four walls of their offices. Sometimes I feel that IT people are stuck in the late 90s or early 2000s when social media was either non existent or prevalent and there was a “lets keep things close to our chest” mentality. The single biggest thing I love about the VMware Community is that there is more often than not a “share first” mentality…I’m not sure why this is so strong in the VMware community but it’s because of this mentality that there is so much content being created and so much online collaboration happening.

With the help of some prompting by @cswaters1 the audience got into the swing of things and began to participate in the panel asking questions around how we got involved with the community among other things…the discussion around blogging was particularly interesting and even a tongue in cheek comment as to my blogging frequency (and the fact I was concocting this very post in my head during the panel) didn’t detract from a key message around blogging.

In a recent vExpert Spotlight interview I did with @vCenterNerd I talked about how to get involved in community and gave this response:

What advice would you give to others involved in the VMware community who are looking at becoming a vExpert?

 

For me it’s all about contributing in a positive way towards this great community. If you haven’t started a blog but feel you have something to say then start one. Don’t worry about weather or not you feel your content is worthy of being out in the public, chances are someone, somewhere will find it interesting.

Finding time to tinker in your own home lab or wherever you have access to hardware and software is of massive benefit. Content tends to generate naturally and without effort the more you tinker and play with cool technologies.

 

 

#CreateShareContibute

The Create, Share and Contribute message was what we finished up on and after the panel was done the five of us all got great feedback on the sessions and we felt an increased sense of purpose with those who we talked to during the networking food and drinks after the meeting had finished…we even committed to starting a local Perth VMUG Slack Group to help member collaborate.

There are a number of examples where people have used community as a launching pad for their career and used it to change direction and career trajectories…and while that’s another great benefit of getting involved you might find that along the way you may develop some great friendships and become mates with a great bunch of people. So even though I am probably preaching to the converted here…retweet/repost this article and lets try and use community it’s self to get the message across!

Community? …Just to it!

MVMUG – Pivoting and The New IT

Last week I attended my second Melbourne VMUG User Conference. The UserCon was again well attended and the Melbourne VMUG Team did a great job putting together a VMWorld Standard Lineup filled with excellent content …highlighted by Keynotes from John Troyer (@JTroyer) and Chad Sakac (@sakacc) as well as Vaughn Stewart (@vStewed).

I flew in early to catch one of my favourite Bands, Papa Roach play a show at The Forum Melbourne. We talk about passion often in the vExpert Community and Papa Roach are certainly not short of passion and energy and I had a great time during a high octane one and half hour set. I had waited 15+ years to see this band and I wasn’t going to miss out on grabbing the opportunity to see them…I’ll tie that in later in the post!

Back to the UserCon, I wanted to focus on the Keynote from John…His presentation was based around a change of expectation around what it is to be part of the IT Industry…and even though there are some IT Professionals that will not embrace the shift that’s currently happening…the VMware/vExpert/Virtualization/Cloud Community is at the forefront of driving that change and best positioned to harness the pivot that’s currently on offer.

So what is this pivot?

Technologies like Containers (Docker) and processes like System and Service Automation (APIs, Orchestration Management) are challenging how we have done things for the past 10+ years since the Virtualisation revolution began last decade and there are a number of movements (DevOps -sic) that are trying to gain traction in the industry with a commonly held thought that if change isn’t embraced those that choose to stay still will be left behind…Pivoting is being used to describe this change of direction…it’s popular in the Startup world as described by Silicon Valley.

Pivoting was referenced a lot during the day and featured heavily in the closing Keynote from Vaughn and Chad around what the Storage Industry is doing to keep up with disruptive change being introduced by new Vendors…However pivoting as it relates to an IT Professionals jobs is probably not representative of this New IT spoken by John. The message from John’s keynote that resonated with me the most was in regards to the work done outside a persons job description…its the side projects that drive change.

For me this is what New IT refers to…Passion driving innovation that drives learning and discovery of new technologies such as those mentioned above. Those lacking in passion in my opinion are likely to be left behind because the industry is shifting quicker than ever and most of what’s new can only be discovered by those who want to learn. John knows first hand the value of being interested outside the square…more than anyone in Tech community he has been responsible for a lot of IT Pro’s following their passion…diving into side projects and in that creating content that’s shared in the form of Blog Posts and other mechanisms are then hopefully used by others passionate enough to dive into their own new side projects…and so the cycle goes.

I talked about Grabbing the Opportunity earlier in the post and for those interested enough to look to better themselves the time is now to grab on and ride your on wave…have a listen at John’s full talk below and ask yourself if taking part in the New IT is worth it?

…the answer should be “YES!”

VMUG User Conference 2015 – Melbourne Community Session

The Australian legs of the VMUG User Conferences are happening next week in Sydney and Melbourne…This year the event is even bigger than last years and if you are into all things VMware and can get to Sydney or Melbourne next week do your self a favour and register. The agenda is full of VMWorld level goodness and the keynote speakers are some of the best going round the VMware Community.

Check out the Agenda here and if you are going, download the VMUG Mobile App and plan out your sessions for the day. If you are coming to the Melbourne leg, i’ll be there and presenting a Community Session around NSX and my experiences around working with NSX at ZettaGrid.

Get down and say hello and take advantage of this is awesome free event that provides an excellent opportunity to network and learn from some of the best local and international guys in the community. Melbourne is the Vitualization Capital of Australia and spiritual home of the aussievMafia!