2015 is pretty much done and dusted and it’s been an great year in for Virtualization is Life! There was a 300% increase in site visits this year compared to 2014 and 1600% increase in visits since the first year I began blogging in 2012. In 2015 I managed to pump out 110 Posts (including this one) which meant I achieved a new years goal of at least two posts per week.
Looking back through the WordPress JetPack stats I’ve listed the top 10 Blog Posts from the last 12 months. Obviously vCloud Director and NSX dominate the top ten but it was interesting to see that two of the most generic and certainly basic posts took out the top two spots. It shows that bloggers should not be afraid of blogging around “perceived” simple topics as there is an audience that will appreciate the content and get value out of the post.
The Top 10 reflects my passion for vCloud Director and NSX and those two technologies also dominated my professional life in 2015. On a personal level I have enjoyed writing a few more opinion pieces this year…my favourites being The Reality of Cloud Outages (#9) and a post around the failing of local Cloud provider Ninefold and how going up directly against AWS is not a smart thing in the IaaS world. That post also got picked up by @CRN_AU and syndicated here.
2014 from a work point of view was challenging at times…but overall I felt a lot was achieved. In my last couple of new year posts I’ve talked about work/life balance and looking back at 2014 I can say that overall balance was maintained…I’m pretty lucky to work in an industry where there is constant satisfaction and sense of achievement…best part is I get paid to do it and that makes the tougher times endured on occasion easier to work through. The last year flew by at such a rate of knots and there where lots of personal and work achievements.
From a personal point of view I was able to continue to refine my presentation skills by presenting at the February VMUG User Conferences in Melbourne and Sydney…the Sydney one being one of the stand out moments in my IT Career where I was able to deliver a talk in front of a crowd filled with Industry Experts (no less than 5 VCDXs) on ZettaGrids vCloud 1.5 to 5.1 upgrade.
In addition to the VMUG User Conferences I attended PEX locally here in Sydney and was lucky enough to secure a spot at VMworld 2014 in San Francisco. VMworld was again fantastic and the networking and community opportunities provided by the event are priceless. It was humbling to meet so many industry peers who I would typically interact with via Twitter and to have them validate my online contributions…on the flip side I was constantly awestruck and amazed by the openness of our industries rockstars approachability and had some great conversations with certified legends!
At VMworld I managed to sit and pass the VCAP-DCA 550 which was a fun exam and again validated a lot of the hard work I’ve put into to bettering myself technically over the last couple of years. I’m aiming to add a couple more advanced certs this year around vCloud Director and NSX-v
At ZettaGrid we managed to roll out and complete our vSphere and vCloud Platform upgrades to version 5.5 which was required as a base for a number of new set of products and features for our IaaS Cloud Service. Highlighting that new set of products was the recent production deployment of NSX-v.
Touching on NSX for a moment…Networking has never been my stronger point…I’ve always known enough to be dangerous…but there was something special about NSX that drew me in initially even though in all honesty I didn’t quiet understand it’s complete impact on IT operations, design, implementation and management. VMware made it tough to get initially but through public comment and working with the NSBU Team locally, ZettaGrid was able to sign up as one of the first Service Provider Partners in Australia/ANZ/APJ.
Having spent the last 6 months with it in my labs and working on productising features to add to ZettaGrid’s advanced networking offerings I have come to understand the significant advantages and advances a network overlay product offers…for me its less about Network Virtualization and more about efficiency. VXLAN not only simplifies virtual wire management but also is key in bridging on premises with hosted Cloud based offerings.
So what about the year ahead? Opinions…like Outages are like *holes 🙂 I’m looking at this year as a year of consolidation of previously hyped and unproven technologies and processes. There is a continual challenge working in the IaaS/Cloud/Service Provider industry to stay relevant in the face of the bigger players and their move towards the attempted monopolization of the industry…smaller players will continue to drop off and remain stagnant if the quality of their Cloud offerings are not kept high.
In my newish role as Lead Architect I have been more heavily focused on R&D and the aim for me this year is to continue to improve in my role, continue to participate in the community and to help ZettaGird continue to lead the ANZ vCloud Network Service Provider market.
Here is wishing the greater vExpert/vChampion/vBlogger/Tech Community a great year…it should be fun!