The Importance of the #vCommunity – Part 1

Back in September I did my first solo vBrownBag talk at the NY/NJ VMUG UserCon on the importance of the #vCommunity. Since that day I’ve wanted to translate and expand that discussion into a blog post. It was a lightning talk so I know that I missed a few things. The link to the video can be found here. I’ve been a bit busy with two little guys at home so this post has been a bit delayed but I’ve found new inspiration after reading a post from the great Rebecca Fitzhugh. Rebecca wrote about the #vCommunity as well, I’m not going to spoil it for you, you can read it for yourself¬†(Hoping I make the cut next year!). So…..show of hands, who knows what the #vCommunity is?

Oh right. Blog post. Not a presentation. ūüôā

So from my perspective, the #vCommunity is a collection of resources around the virtualization community. The most important of these resources is people. Community starts with people that are looking to share their experiences with others. I always say, why go it alone when you can roll with your buddies?

People aren’t just limited to the women and men that you have conversations with at a VMUG (More on VMUG later). People can be found in many different places, whether it’s online on a community forum such as VMTN, Reddit or Experts Exchange or on social media like Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn, there’s also Slack and the many groups there as well. People are eveywhere and they want to learn, teach and colloborate.

My personal favorite venue though is VMUG. I love the social interaction that I get going to these events. They usually involve discussions around technology that I am passionate about with a bunch of like minded individuals who speak the language. Now granted, I may be a little biased since I am a co-leader of the NYC VMUG. VMUG is a volunteer driven organization so the people that are organizing the meetings are doing it in their spare time because they want to be there. I’m actually going to elaborate on VMUG specifically in a later post.

Another great resource out there are blogs. You can learn everything you could ever want to know by using a friendly neighborhood search engine. Trying to deploy new software? Studying for a new certification? Can’t decide what gear to buy for your home lab? Someone has written about it, if not, you could. The thing that I love about blogs is that they are usually written by a person not a company. I love getting a perspective from people like me. Here are some of the resources that I use. I know that I’m forgetting some but it is not intentional, there are just too many good ones to list.

VMware Blogs Page, VirtuallyGhetto, Wahl Network, Ariel Sanchez’s Blog, Technicloud,¬†VirtuallySober,¬†VirtualHobbit,¬†Punching Clouds, Yellow Bricks

Blogs are great but they are mostly static. What if you’d like to have a conversation with someone? That’s where social media and online forums come into play. There are a ton of these as well. There’s old faithful: Twitter. There is also the VMware Technology Network (VMTN) which has a ton of resources for you to indulge on. Reddit is awesome as well, and there are also a ton of resources on LinkedIn. All of these sites and resources are great to reach out and talk to people that you can get direct, accurate answers from. I’m not talking about just the average admin either. Just take a look at #vExpert on Twitter. There are a ton of great blog posts as well as awesome conversations about current relevant topics.

There are some other great resources where you can not only learn a lot but talk to people just like you. Seek and ye shall find.

Forums – Reddit, GitHub, VMTN, VMUG communities, LinkedIn, Slack, etc.

Social Media – Twitter, Facebook, Slack

Podcasts – Datanauts, VirtuallySpeaking, vBrownBag, The Geek Whisperers, The Full Stack Journey

This is just the beginning of the journey. Being a parent, I hear the phrase, “It takes a village…” quite often. It’s true when it comes to raising kids but it can be applied to life and work as well. I spent six years of my life in the Marine Corps and it really was an amazing experience. The sense of community was so strong that you wind up embracing those around you as family. I find a lot of parallels between the Marine Corps and the #vCommunity. Everyone who takes part is there to lift one another up. When one of us dives into something, the rest of us give our support. Or when one of us is down because of a layoff, or a failed cert or whatever the case may be, we are all there to lift them up and make sure that they are not down for long. It’s a lot easier to succeed when you’re not trying to do everything by yourself.

I’m going to do my best to provide you with additional resources as well as my own personal experiences with the #vCommunity. In part 2 of this series I’m going to dive into the benefits of the #vCommunity and how it can help you in your career, the quest for knowledge or just meeting new, awesome people.

VMUG Whiteboard Meetings #VMUGWB

Recently, I was afforded the opportunity along with Mike Martino (@wildcard78), and Ariel Sanchez (@arielsanchezmor) to present on the latest VMUG Leader call. We were speaking about a topic near and dear to our hearts, that being Whiteboard Meetings. This is something that we started at the NYC VMUG with tremendous support from Niran Even-Chen (@NiranEC) and Prabhu Barathi (@prabhu_b) from VMware as well as Azarya Shaulov (@az_ny) from Touro College. Azarya was gracious enough to provide us with the space free of charge.

I’m sure that your next question must be, “What the heck is a Whiteboard Meeting?”. Well, I’m glad you asked.

This meeting is designed to be:

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  • An informal and intimate technical meeting of NYC VMUG members with an emphasis on the QUALITY of the content.
  • A place where we could get together and share ideas about technology, projects, issues and learn from one another on the best way to move forward.
  • An opportunity to get in front of a room and work on your presentation skills. Not everyone is comfortable with public speaking and this gives our members a judgement-free forum to do so. We’re here to encourage one another
  • A safe zone free of sponsors or being bombarded by sales guys (We love you sales guys, we just need a little space). We welcome anyone to these meetings no matter where you come from as long as you are there to share ideas in a positive manner.
  • Most importantly, it’s not about free food or giveaways or anything like that, it’s about geeks being geeks and embracing the vCommunity.

So, how did it start? To quote Ariel, “At a bar, of course!

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We were having a typical discussion about the VMUG Meeting we just had. You know what I’m talking about. After the meeting ends, there is that group of people that just can’t get enough and are super excited to talk to people who speak their language. They were just so blown away by the topic that they never want the discussion to end. Our conversation then morphed into how great the discussion we were having was. We said, “You know what? We should have more meetings like THIS!” In a nutshell, that’s how this idea began.

What’s next?

What do you need to get started with your own Whiteboard meetings?

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  • A (few) Whiteboard(s) and dry erase markers. Duh.
  • A space that can hold 12 to 15 people. We try to keep these meetings a little smaller so that everyone has the ability to participate. If you can use a classroom-type space, even better.
  • Local product experts who would like join is usually very valuable for members who are looking for answers and insight. Having local VCDXs, VCAP, VMUG Leaders, vExperts, etc. participate is very helpful.
  • Someone to break the ice (a VMUG Leader, typically) and some relevant topics to discuss. (Current Technologies, New Product Releases, Home Labs, Automation examples, etc.)
  • If there is money available in your budget, try to order some take out for the group. A couple of pizzas is usually sufficient.

 

What advice can I give you?

  • Invite people that you think would appreciate it. This doesn’t have to be limited to virtualization admins. Bring co-workers. I’ve personally brought one of my network architects out and now he’s more involved with virtualization than ever before.
  • Be outgoing. Don‚Äôt be afraid to make a mistake. Remember, this is a judgement free zone where we are all trying to improve.
  • Do not limit conversation to just VMware, these meetings are about technology in general. VMware is usually the focus but related technologies are often discussed. We’ve spoken about networking, Public Cloud, AD, Email, Backups & Replication, you name it, it’s probably come up in some form or fashion.
  • Try to capture the session to a blog post with pictures to help promote the individuals presenting on social media and future vExpert applications. That usually helps bring more people to future meetings. We post under the hashtag #VMUGWB.
  • Try to have breakout Whiteboard Meeting at UserCons, or sponsor-driven VMUG Meetings
  • Have topic focused Whiteboard Meetings. Have a meeting around NSX, vSAN, VMware Cloud on AWS, you can even poll your members for topics that they’d like to talk about. Try to get your local VMware SEs to attend as well. You may even be able to catch a traveling SME if they are in town.
  • If you have the ability to do a video conference or a WebEx of some sort, go for it. I’ve actually taken advantage of this myself after the birth of one of my kids.

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  • Try to really have an understanding of what people are looking to learn and why they are there. Make it as collaborative as possible. Try to bring in an expert on a particular subject if you keep hearing about it.
  • Keep the conversation going after the meeting ends. Go grab a beer and a bite afterward. Sometimes the shy ones that don’t get up and present will open up a bit more after a few cold ones.

With that said, I hope you try this out in your area. It tends to have a really positive impact on those who attend.

Here’s some feedback that we received from one of our attendees:

“The whiteboard sessions hosting by NYCVMUG community have been an excellent forum for engineering and architecture discussions.¬† Unlike larger conferences, the whiteboard sessions are small and each participant has an opportunity to present something – anything – to the room.

For myself, the WB sessions have been a great opportunity to accelerate VMware training, an opportunity to work through complex problems regarding production issues, lab infrastructures and vetting/sounding out future plans. 

Another big aspect for me personally is the ability to practice presenting in of itself.  Being small & unrelated to employers or vendors in combination with great community members, the sessions have help increase my overall confidence when standing before peers & colleagues.

Overall the WB sessions are a great experience. I look forward to attending more and seeing the concept grow beyond NYC.”

-Brendan Peterson (@petes_revenge)

I’m looking forward to hearing about Whiteboard Meetings all over the world. Hopefully, this catches fire and the vCommunity continues to grow.

If you have questions, we’re here to help. Feel free to reach out to any of us if you want more info. Our contact info is listed below. We can be reached through the vExpert Slack as well.

If you think that this could be helpful, let your local VMUG leaders know! We always announce these

A special thanks to Mike, Ariel, Niran, Prabhu, Azarya, Brendan and the whole NYC VMUG Whiteboard crew for building an awesome vCommunity and helping to make this such a success.

My New Role

Although it is bittersweet, today is my last day at Viacom. I am very lucky to have been afforded the opportunity to come here and work with some amazing talent as well as some cutting edge technology. The culture at Viacom as a whole has been phenomenal. I will look back on my time here fondly.

Coming to the decision to move on was not an easy one. There were only a few places that I even considered making a move to. They were all technology companies and I was fortunate enough that I was able to pick between a few of them. My decision was obviously based on this short list of companies but how that list came to be is the important part. I wanted to go to a company where I believed in the product. Since I was looking at pre-sales roles, I felt that it was necessary that I could speak about the product with passion and first hand experience. As a customer, I could always tell the difference when someone was trying to hit a quota as opposed to when they believed in the product or service that they were selling.

I’m happy to announce that I’ll be joining the team at Zerto as a Systems Engineer covering NYC and Long Island. I’ve spent the past 3+ years as both a customer and a partner of Zerto and I know firsthand the dramatic improvement it can bring to any environment. Zerto has enabled me to perform DR tests in a matter of minutes whereas the previous products and technologies I’ve used took days. I’ve also seen it used successfully for datacenter migrations and ransomware recoveries. Given the recent announcements of bi-directional replication with Microsoft Azure, I only expect that my experiences will get better and be shared by more and more of you. I’m looking to share my experience with you as well. I plan on blogging about the technology and new features in the coming weeks so stay tuned.

vExpert 2017 – Achievement Unlocked!

Hey everyone, I know it’s been a while since I last posted here. That is mostly due to a version upgrade to Daddy v2.0. My lovely wife Cara and I welcomed our second son Rocco Xavier Scuola into the world on December 13th and it’s been a bit of adjustment for our entire house. My blogging has been directly affected as well but I’m hoping to change that going forward.
One thing that I was able to get done was my vExpert application. You can see the VMTN Blog post on the application process here:

Application Process:

https://blogs.vmware.com/vmtn/2016/11/vexpert-2017-applications-are-now-open.htmlThis was my first time applying and I was fortunate enough to be awarded the title of vExpert 2017!

Award Announcement

https://blogs.vmware.com/vmtn/2017/02/vexpert-2017-award-announcement.html

I owe A TON of credit to the guys at the NYC VMUG. The leaders of the group are some of the most inspiring, positive, knowledgeable and helpful people that I have met. I’m lucky enough to not only be part of the same group as them but I can call a bunch of them my friends. There are currently 11 vExperts from the NYC VMUG. Each one of them encourages all of the VMUG members to join their ranks. That’s what I’m here to do as well.

How did I become a vExpert?

Well, as my buddy Ariel Sanchez (@arielsanchezmor)¬†said, “Overall, I think he just didn’t know he was a vExpert, but he has been doing the role for years now!”. This filled me with such a sense of pride and accomplishment. What did it mean though? The more I’ve thought about it since applying, I’ve realized that it’s about being part of the community and embracing others to join you and help evangelize virtualization and VMware. There are so many ways you can go about that. Some people are amazing bloggers (I’m not there yet but I hope to be one day), others are VMUG leaders, others have YouTube channels, some give vBrownBag presentations and there are a number of other ways to get there.

Personally, I try to be active in official VMUG meetings and unofficial meetings such as Whiteboard Sessions, vBeers, Other User Group meetings etc. as well. I’ve given a presentation on Hyper-Converged Infrastructure Fundamentals (HCI Presentation) and I hope to do more presentations this year. I also try to post any and all interesting VMware-related articles that I come across to my Twitter (@NScuola) and LinkedIn (NicholasScuola) accounts. I blog (spookysolutions.com) from time to time as well, and I plan to do that with much more frequency. I’m in the process of building out my home lab and testing a large number of things from vSphere 6.5 to VSAN to NSX to vRA. Stay tuned. My favorite way of participating in the community is just talking shop with other members of the community. This doesn’t just have to be during a VMUG meeting. It can be over beers during a conference, at the airport waiting for a flight, in a Slack channel or online forum like Reddit. There are plenty of ways to talk to people. Most of us have similar backgrounds in the industry and have probably gone through some of the same upgrade/install/troubleshooting steps. It’s always fun for me to hear about the experiences of others and find ways that I can improve my process or find different ways of accomplishing the same tasks going forward. Every once in awhile I’ll even help someone out with some of my own experiences.

What does being named a vExpert mean to me?

Being named a vExpert showed me that my contributions in the virtualization community actually mean something. It also provides access to some of the sharpest minds in the VMware space. I have been able to not only meet some people whose blogs I’ve followed for years but I’ve been able to interact with them directly and have meaningful conversations around the technology. It also shows me that anyone could do this. I’ve named a few of the different avenues you can take to get to a vExpert but the most important thing is that you have to dive in and do it.

Sometimes the hardest part is believing in yourself enough to give it a shot. I’m living proof that the effort pays off. If you have any questions, or would like to pursue the vExpert award yourself, feel free to contact me and I’ll do my best to put you on the right path so you can join our ranks. One of the biggest joys of being part of the club is helping others join us.

VMUG Presentation – HCI Concepts

I was given the honor of presenting at the October 19th NYC VMUG meeting (that’s VMware User Group for my non-virtualization friends). The topic that I was asked to speak about was Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) Concepts. I am by no means an expert on the topic but given my numerous years dealing with infrastructure, I know enough to get by. I wanted to share my presentation with you all. The presentation is at a high level just going over the key points for those new to the space. I tried to keep it at a level that my non-technical wife can understand what I’m talking about.

Side Note: I run all this stuff by her. If I can keep her attention, I should be able to keep yours. ūüôā

Here are the key points that I touched upon:
– A little history lesson on how VMware changed the supply chain when it comes to deploying servers and applications to customers (or users).
– An overview on the journey from Converged to Hyper-Converged.
– A run down of the different infrastructure approaches (Traditional, Reference Architectures, Converged, Hyper-Converged).
– Different players in the market today.
– Use cases.
– Where HCI fits in and some of the drawbacks.
I must say, I was humbled by the response that I received from everyone at the meeting. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive and I helped clear up a few points of confusion for some of the attendees. They were actually able to get something out of this and hopefully you will too.

Enjoy!

My VCAP6-DCV Deploy Beta Experience

A little over three¬†years ago my wife introduced me to the wonderful world of 5 year plans. At first I was skeptical. I may have even thought of it was a little lame (Don’t tell her that though). Even still, I humored her and created one. We actually did 1, 3 and 5 years plans based on our personal, professional and family goals. I’m not going to go into all of the details of my plan but there is one section that I am going to touch on. Under my professional goals, I had a an education section. This section was mostly based around IT Certifications. I had a 1 year goal of re-certifying my VCP5-DCV (Achieved!), a 3 year goal of achieving a VCP5-DT (Achieved!), and a 5 year goal of achieving a VCAP5-DCA. As you can see I completed 2 out of 3. Technically, I still have 2 years left to achieve my goal but the universe had different plans for me.

I’ve actually paid for the majority of my training and certs out of pocket. So the cost of exams is a factor on when I can actually take them. The VCAP is not cheap. Last time I checked it was around $400. This is an advanced level exam so this isn’t surprising but it’s still a lot of money especially for those of us with families. VMware does provide beta exams though and they come at a fraction of the cost. In this case the VCAP6-DCV Deploy exam was only $100. The only problem was that I didn’t have a lot of time to study. I figured I’d give it a shot though. Even if I failed, at least it would be money well spent, I could experience the exam first hand and see where I stood. There was another outcome though, I could pass, WHICH I DID! I achieved my goal, well ahead of time and saved some money to buy my little guy more Thomas The Tank Engine trains. ūüôā

This post is going to document my experience and any tips that I may have to help others achieve their goals of becoming VMware Certified Advanced Professionals. Here’s how I did it.

Exam Blueprint
You can find all the information that you’ll need regarding the topics covered, how to register, exam fees, recommended training and other helpful hints directly from VMware on their exam blueprint page.

Your Peers
This one is perhaps the most important item that I’m going to talk about not just for this or other exams but for any issue you run into at work or in life. One of the greatest venues to talk to your peers is the VMUG. I’m lucky enough to be part of one of the best chapters around in NYC. These guys and gals love what they do, are extremely talented and have diverse backgrounds from every industry that you can think of. If you have a goal in mind, chances are there is someone else in your group that has the same idea in mind or has already achieved it. My VMUG leaders are always willing to help out or give guidance where they can. I highly recommend joining or starting a study group nearby or online. There are plenty of LinkedIn¬†& Google+ groups filled with individuals just like you that want to pass this and other exams. I’m always here to help where I can as well. You can find me on Twitter at¬†@NScuola.

VMware Hands On Lab

Those of you that have never heard of VMware’s Hands On Labs are really missing out. Not only are they really in depth but the material is coming straight from the horse’s mouth. The interface is nearly identical to what you’ll use on the actual exam as well. The material is extremely helpful not just for the exam but it may help you at the office as well. It’s also much cheaper than standing up a home lab. Here are some of the specific labs that I went through.

HOL-SDC-1627 – VVol, Virtual SAN & Storage Policy-Based Management
HOL-CHG-1695 – vSphere 6 Challenge Lab
HOL-SDC-1402 – vSphere Distributed Switch from A to Z
HOL-SDC-1602 – vSphere with Operations Management 6: Advanced Topics
HOL-SDC-1607 – From Beginner to Advanced Features with PowerCLI
HOL-SDC-1604 – vSphere Performance Optimization

PLURALSIGHT
One of the tools that I use in my certification endeavors is a paid PluralSight account. PluralSight is a great resource for video training on a variety of subjects. The courses that I went through included but weren’t limited to the following:

VMware vSphere 6 Foundations Series by David Davis @davidmdavis
VMware vSphere 6 Data Center Virtualization (VCP6-DCV) Series by Greg Shields @concentratdgreg
VMware vSphere Optimize and Scale (VCAP-DCA) Series by Jason Nash @TheJasonNash

These courses go into great detail and all real world examples of how to install, configure and troubleshoot the different components involved with vSphere.

BLOGS
Just do a search for VCAP exam experience and you’ll find endless experiences from people that were successful and others that weren’t. Each experience should provide you with helpful information that will help you in your attempt.

In closing, this exam is tough. There are no shortcuts. You’re going to need to do the work. There is a time crunch that will get you if you let it. I’d recommend taking notes on each item and knocking out the questions that you know and returning to the ones that you don’t at a later time. I actually missed 2 questions entirely because I ran out of time. The interface is very similar to the hands on labs that VMware provides and you can actually see exactly what it looks like¬†here. There is access to documentation as well but it will chew up a lot of time searching so try leaving the questions that you’re stuck on for the end.

Keep in mind this is a 3 hour exam. Make sure that you’re hydrated and have used the restroom prior to going into the exam room. When you’re sitting down for this long, you’re going to want to be comfortable. It’s pretty tough to concentrate if you’re not.

At the end of the day though, if you study to the best of your abilities and can successfully complete all of the objectives on the blueprint, there is no reason you can’t pass this exam too. Good luck!

(Upgrade) Times are changing…..

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. It’s Monday morning, you open up your newsreader and there are 25 different articles about an exploit that has been found that is sweeping the net. It affects nearly 90% of systems out there. You know it’s only a matter of time until this news goes from being on the tech sites only to the Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. Once that happens, the alert level hits red. Now all of your C-Level execs are aware of the problem and someone is going to be calling you asking for a status update. If you’re¬†Peter Gibbons, you may even have 8 different people calling you. Where do you go from here? In the old days, this would mean, any plans you had for that weekend were scrapped. You’d now have to coordinate outages with your application teams, IT staff, sometimes you’d even have to get your building’s security team involved. You’d also have to break the news to your wife, husband, girlfriend, boyfriend, kids, or whoever that you may not see them again until Tuesday (assuming that all goes well). Then you get to go through this scenario:
  • Planning and executing the downing all of your affected DEV/TEST systems.
  • Preemptively opening cases with your vendors in case you run into an issue (you would hate to get stuck in the queue without a case number while your systems are down)
  • Downloading and applying the patches to fix the vulnerability.
  • Bringing all of said systems back up and running.
  • Contacting all of your applications owners once the systems are back up and having them test all of the applications.
  • Squeeze in a phone call to your loved ones asking about how life is on the outside.
  • Notifying all of your users that the systems are back up and running and that now regular weekend work can commence.
  • Once all of this is done, and you’ve verified that everything is OK and there are no issues, you can now plan to do the same thing to your Production systems. YAY! That usually means another weekend down the toilet.
Many times, some of the pain involved with this type of maintenance can be lessened¬†through mechanisms like vMotion, Exchange DAGs, and clustered systems in general. Typically, you patch each of the secondary¬†nodes in the cluster, then you patch the primary¬†node and you’re good to go. This process of¬†upgrading¬†different cluster nodes can¬†take hours depending on the size of your environment and requires total concentration and focus. If you run into an issue during a failover, you’ll be happy you opened that support case.
Why do I bring all of this up? Traditionally, the one system that usually has the biggest issues during this kind of upgrade/update scenario is your storage environment. Especially if you are on legacy storage for one reason or another. In most cases that I have seen, storage code upgrades are completely ignored unless absolutely necessary. I can see why people make that argument. If your storage goes down, especially in a small to medium sized shop, EVERYTHING goes down. This scares the pants off of a lot people, with good reason. They would rather take the “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” approach of yesteryear. Nobody wants to run into those kinds of problems and lose their weekends because of storage issues. This kind of thinking leads to rolling the dice and hoping¬†that the storage environment will just keep on chugging along and that no one will exploit the vulnerabilities that are out there. I think this model is changing in storage though, along the same lines that the break/fix mentality was replaced with a proactive approach. IT departments are getting more sophisticated and are looking to get everything patched and protected BEFORE someone tries to exploit the vulnerabilities.¬†
What if you, the IT engineer, could avoid those sleeping in the office kind of issues and get your weekends back? Who would say no to that? As I’ve written about in the past, I’ve been a customer of¬†Pure Storage¬†for about two and a half years now. I started out on an FA-320 array, I’m currently using their FA-400 series and I’m getting ready to start playing with the FlashArray//m as soon as it arrives. One of the things that sold¬†me on Pure Storage¬†was the Non-Disruptive Upgrade (NDU) capabilities for both the software and the hardware¬†of the array (you can see a demo of their NDU¬†here). I’ve gone through almost every iteration imaginable. I’ve done code upgrades (both minor and major revisions), I’ve added additional shelves of disk, I’ve gone from 300 series to 400 series controllers, you name it and I probably done it. The one similarity in every upgrade was that it happened like they said it would happen. No downtime, no performance degradation, no idea that it was happening from a user perspective. They were all quick, seamless, and pain free. They also happened during the week (we played it safe and did them on Friday evenings for our Production units) but on Saturday morning I was home playing with my little boy which is what I care about most.
As I said earlier, this approach appears to be the new status quo. Many other vendors besides Pure Storage are trying to follow suit. EMC has stated that they now support NDU’s (although I’m not sure that is the case for different hardware versions). Other vendors such as Solid Fire and Nimble also support NDU’s. This is a direction that I think everyone in IT welcomes. Being able to provide services quickly to the end user without disturbing their workflow is the goal of nearly every IT staff. This new model greatly increases the success rate of achieving that goal. Pure Storage has gone one step further and changed the typical storage lifecycle model¬†around this principle when they launched¬†Evergreen Storage. The belief is that forklift upgrades will go the way of the dodo bird and you can just replace individual components when needed. Your maintenance never increases (unless you add capacity). Your storage system can stay the same for as long as you need it too saving you tons of money in the long run while also providing you with a solid foundation to house your infrastructure on.
If other systems start following suit and rethink how we look at system lifecycles, the end result can be great for IT Admins. What if it was as easy to upgrade the code on your core switches and routers as it is to upgrade an app on your iPhone? What if said code could be upgraded FROM your iPhone while you’re sipping margaritas on a beach somewhere (just don’t drink too many until the upgrade is done)? What if upgrading your email servers wasn’t a 6 month project? Whether it’s PC refreshes, server upgrades, or application upgrades, a pain-free¬†process¬†is something everyone would welcome and what we currently strive for as IT pros. It’s nice to see that not only can we make end users’ lives easier,¬†I think it’s time that we make our¬†own lives easier as well. Don’t we as IT admins deserve the same level of happiness and time away from the office as our users do? I sure think so. I think you all would agree with me. It’s nice to see that vendors like Pure Storage share that same vision and are doing something to¬†achieve it.