VMworld Europe 2013 – Recap and Thoughts

Now that VMworld is over and I’ve taken a breather, I guess it’s time for me to recap the few wonderful days spent in Barcelona and reflect on what I got out of my attendance. Yes, I know it’s late but let’s just say, I was tied up.

Like many others, my conference started on Sunday night.  The vRockStar party was the place to be and pretty much everyone from the virtualization community attended.  Xtravirt guys were also there in full force, duly noted by Jonathan Medd (@jonathanmedd) here.  I met great new people, including some that I knew from Twitter.  Needless to say, party was a blast and everyone enjoyed it very much.  Marco Broeken has posted some pictures here.

Monday was Partner day.  It wasn’t busy at all as there were no sessions or Solutions Exchange etc.  Day was spent meeting people and getting familiar with the conference layout etc.  I spent the day in the Hang Space and got introduced to a few new people.  I really enjoyed that part of the conference throughout. The night was reserved for PernixData’s Flashy VIP party.

Boo Club Barcelona

The venue was great and as you would expect, everyone was there.  I had quite nice chats with some of my virtualization colleagues.  We left at a reasonable time as the conference was due to start full blast in the morning.

Tuesday was when it all really kicked off.  Everyone headed towards the General Session to get a good seat.  The keynote had a flashy start and was followed by an equally brilliant line up of announcements.

Keynote - General Session

It was a great session, delivered in a nicely-flowing informal way, unlike most keynotes I’ve seen in the past.  Looking at what VMware has announced here (and in San Francisco) it’s clear that VMware is maintaining its huge lead over all competitors and it’s great to see. It feels good to be part of all this and hopefully, we all can keep up with the pace.  The rest of my day was spent on sessions, Solutions Exchange (which was jam-packed with vendors) and in the Hang Space.  In the night, I went to VMware’s vExpert/VCDX party and had the opportunity to meet my vExpert colleagues and also a few VCDXs, of course.  It was also nice to be able to go to a party and not having to shout.

Wednesday was pretty much the same as Tuesday as far as my VMworld attendance goes.  Watched the General Session from the Hang Space and then carried on to Solutions Exchange, having great chats with different vendors.  Highlight of the day was, of course, the VMworld Party.  Dark atmosphere, unlimited food, loud music and people falling over each other skating – great fun!  The night ended with Taio Cruz performing, who was well… OK.

VMworld Party - Skating

Thursday was again a day for Solutions Exchange.  While I conveniently forgot to mention this but this was also the third day for “Swag Collection”.  I couldn’t possibly have any more so passed on a few opportunities but did go for a few more items, nevertheless.  While at @PernixData’s booth, got a chance to have a (non)technical and great chat with Frank Denneman (@FrankDenneman).  He also kindly gave me extra copies of PernixData’s vSphere Design PocketBook for my colleagues.  I later found out that they already have their copies.  So, at @dawoo’s suggestion, I might hand out a couple of those copies with a minor contest to win.  It should be fun!

That’s pretty much the whole conference covered.  So, what did I (dis)like:

Good:

  • Quantity, quality and location of food and drink – it was everywhere!  Kept everyone fed and hydrated in between sessions.  Even probiotic yogurt drinks were available!
  • Layout of the conference.  Even though there were about 9,000 people in attendance, they were all well-scattered and apart from a couple of times, there were no traffic jams.
  • Location and set up of Hang Space/Lounge Areas/HOLs etc.

Bad:

  • Session that were marked “Advanced” but weren’t really.
  • The fact that one had to go up and then down to get from sessions area to Hang Space/Lounge Areas (this might have something to do with traffic management??)

Conclusion:

Best thing for me was the chance to meet a lot of people (too many to mention!) that I know from Twitter or blogs.  It was great to put faces to names (or avatars!)  It’s also great to see enthusiasm and passion of the VMware Community.  One can see it on Twitter but it’s a whole different experience at the conference itself.

After the keynote and while looking at the new versions/technologies being released at VMworld, I can’t help but thinking that despite trying to keep up, there is still a lot to learn and things to play with.  Maybe it’s time to stock up on energy drinks and start the heavy reading!

By | 2016-12-11T15:25:06+00:00 October 23rd, 2013|General, Virtualization, VMware, vSphere|0 Comments

About the Author:

Ather Beg is a technology and virtualisation blogger and is Chief Virtualogist at Virtualogists Ltd, which is a consultancy focusing on virtualised solutions. Ather has worked in IT for over 20 years and contributes his findings on this blog. In addition to holding several industry-related certifications, he has also been awarded vExpert status by VMware.

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