I’ve joined @SolidFire

I am excited to share that I have joined the team at SolidFire as a Systems Engineer. For those unfamiliar, SolidFire is the market leader in all-flash primary storage systems built for next generation data centers and cloud service providers.

SolidFire_logo_RGB

I look forward to working with an All-star team of colleagues, many of whom I’ve been fortunate enough to count among my friends and collaborators in various roles over the years.

In fact, knowing so many people who already work at SolidFire, I find it difficult to choose only a few to name to mention. So rather than attempting to do that, I’ll include a reference to @Mike_Colson, who announced last week that he too is joining the team. Mike followed up with a great post about Why SolidFire? on his blog. I share many of Mike’s views expressed in the post and rather than repeat them, I’ll let you go read them.

I will add that personally I believe what makes the solution exciting is that scalability is driven through the power of automation and open integration points for multiple platforms. Vendors’ ability to distinguish themselves today is by continued innovation and API exposure. In essence, revealing bits of their own secret sauce, such as the ability to provide hooks that can leverage underlying features where available and appropriate. Both HW and SW vendors began down this path with VAAI and VASA for Automated Storage Tiering, Storage DRS, I/O Control and additional capabilities are here now with VVOLs such as VM level of granularity and Quality of Service. Abstraction and granular control allow administrators to more easily manage environments with heterogeneous application demands without spreading their already divergent skill sets too thin. Additional abstraction of the storage layer also provides the options to assign and guarantee resources to meet specific needs without adding complexity or increasing storage management touch-points. </COMMERCIAL>

Looking ahead, this new role promises opportunity to continue to grow and learn.  I am especially eager to gain an even greater perspective on the demands of multi-tenant infrastructure technologies in use within many large Enterprise customers and dive deeper into integration points with VMware as well as OpenStack, and CloudStack.

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When I left my previous position to join Dell I wrote about that here. In fact a good friend and now my colleague at SolidFire, Gabriel Chapman and I somewhat coordinated our individual career path announcements and you know that Gabe surely played a key role in bringing me over to the SolidFire family. Thanks man!

Here, I would be remiss if I did not also thank my colleagues at Dell and especially each of my direct teammates in the CCC and vWorkspace group for the experience working together. I’m certain we’ll continue to cross paths.

So, whether you’re one of my new or former colleagues or a member of this great Community, please reach out and say hello! I’m excited to begin this new chapter. I’ll be spending some time in Boulder, Colorado over the next couple weeks, so don’t be a stranger if you’re in the area.

Future posts are coming in which I’ll share a bit more about #vSensei but I want to mention here that I have been working with Cody over the past few months and am really happy about the results. More on that later. For now I’ll close with  Fake Grimlock: BE ON FIRE!

BeTheFIRE

Starting Monday #Iwork4Dell Cloud Client Computing @Dell

As of next Monday I’m joining Dell in a Sales Engineer role for Cloud Client Computing. As part of my career trajectory I have wanted to transition into an SE role for a while. In considering the next step in my career, I interviewed with several companies, including local VARs as well as hyper-converged infrastructure manufacturers.

keepcalmIwork4dell

Working for Dell is a goal I’d set back when I was a customer at a Lighthouse account and right now feels like a great time to join. In my new role I look forward to continuing to be customer facing and hands-on with virtualization technologies. I believe my background managing large desktop deployments and supporting EUC/VDI infrastructure allow me to be especially in tune with hearing customers’ needs and assist them in solving their challenges with solutions offered throughout the Dell portfolio. The position will allow me to interface with a large variety of companies including education, healthcare and manufacturing among many others.

 

I will remain heavily involved in infrastructure such as servers, switches, storage and of course hypervisors, as well as allow me to broaden my focus to cover the entire solution stack, including virtualization software, endpoint management for thin-clients, zero-clients, and mobile devices. I’ll be able to pull from an entire portfolio of offerings and continue to strengthen my own skill set across multiple software solutions includes VMware, Citrix, Microsoft and of course vWorkspace among others. Hyperconvergence is of course still on the table, as I’m joining a company that in fact OEMs Web-scale Converged Appliances as a SKU 🙂

Dell CCC portfolio

So, whether you’re one of my new Dell colleagues or a member of this great community, please reach out and say hello! I’m excited to begin this new chapter. I’ll likely be feeling the full fire hose to the face effect for the first few weeks, so do excuse me if I am a bit slow to respond!

I will be attending VMworld this year, so if you’re there make a point to connect up! In addition to spending some time in/around the Dell booth and packing the EUC sessions, I plan on manning the vBrownbag Tech Talks Live taking place in the Community Hang Space.

I was #webscale before @Dell OEM'd IT ;)

 

Earlier this week I posted about leaving my current position.

I’m changing jobs. Leaving @ProximalData after 2.5 years. More news to come

TL;DR I’m changing jobs. Leaving @ProximalData after 2.5 years. More news to come.

It seems not that long ago I left my previous position with a local university to join Proximal Data. Startup time is like dog years! 2 and 1/2  years, 37 generally available releases across 3 hypervisor platforms, early WebEx sessions, late WebEx sessions, pages and pages of tech docs and emails, along with many long hard hours and a whole bunch of learning later, I’m taking another leap. I’ll share where I’m heading in another post. It’s a role that I’ve been steering my career toward and I feel the time is right for this opportunity. In making my decision I consulted more than just my own heart, my head and my wife… though those are obviously high up in my decision tree. I also have to thank several members of this community for sharing their own experience and insight with me, whether directly via late night phone calls, dms, sms or indirectly via blog posts, podcasts, etc. These include my fellow vBrownbag crew, VMUG co-leaders and current or past employees of my future employer, as well as others who have ‘moved around‘ lately. For others considering making a move, I recommend in addition to feeling out your own network, check out  @JoshAtwell‘s blog posts on the subject at vTesseract.com and Gabriel Chapman @Bacon_Is_King ‘s blog posts, including #SNLDD #7: ‘When is it Time to Jump Ship?‘. I have to thank my team at Proximal Data for bringing me on for my first startup rodeo. I’d do it again in a heartbeat! It was everything and nothing like I’d imagined, all at the same time. Being lead by industry veterans who effectively married the best parts of being a startup with the lessons learned while at large corporations has shaped the lens I view future opportunities though. Working side by side with a senior team of incredibly capable engineers, not being a developer myself, was as challenging as it was inspiring. I am glad they believe in me as much as I have in them. I’ve strengthened my own capability to learn and grow and acquire a number of the skills that I will continue to build my career upon. This is a very amicable parting and I’ve discussed it at length with our CEO, our VP and my colleagues. I wish the company and my coworkers the very best!

#MSTechEd 2014 Day 3 – Swimming w/MS fishes #TheKrewe #MVPs #HyperV #Storage & more…

Day 3 – Wednesday :

There were again two overlapping session covering strorage Jose Barreto, & Damnien were presenting on SDS at the same time as Eric Matthew and ___ were doing #DCIMB346 Best Practices for Deploying Storage Spaces Ballroom A

Session #DCIM-B346 Best Practices for Deploying Tiered Storage Spaces in Windows Server 2012 R2 by Bryan Matthew, Chris Robinson

Since the rooms were next to each other I hit up Jose for a storage poster and made my way up to the front row of Bryan and Chris’ session.

 

Following the I attended PDT Deployment Toolkit by Rob Willis  Awesome. Out of completely random chance I ended up sitting next to Rob later in the evening.

 

Microsoft booth – Cloud & Datacenter Infrastructure Management

3pm Stop – Instructor Led Hands on Lab Time! #SCVMM & Storage. Short 45 min lab – https://twitter.com/kylemurley/status/466674425149263873

 

HP – Jeff. iLo cmdlets

Our VP of Biz Dev for Proximal Data was still in town from the Petri event we sponsored the night before. We had bite to eat together and had a few more good conversations and I was back out on the expo floor to learn about what other vendors are providing in the Hyper-V / SCVMM space.

Being Wednesday my calendar started telling me I had an event schedule for noon California time. I usually make an effort to run into the weekly live recording sessions and chat for the VMTN community podcast. This Wednesday I made a special effort, while this great Microsoft event to listen in and chat along with the VMware community as we wished John Troyer continued success in his new independent role at TechReckoning and no longer as the DeFacto VMware community connector that has brought so many of us together to grow and learn from each other as IT professionals, partners and friends. If you’re not already aware of the role that John play(s/-ed) in founding and nurturing the #vExperts, Community forums, blogs, etc, then you should listen to this episode as Mike Laverick coaxes John along through an incredible journey that John has had. If you don’t care to listen or can’t make the time, I’ll just summarize for you: John Troyer is the Wizard of Oz. That is all!

 

I spoke with several hardware storage appliance manufacturers about their integration with Microsoft’s various administration and orchestration tools. Most either already have or are working to release an SMI-S provider to integrate with SCVMM for provisioning and management of their storage resources, which is a nice thing to have as it offers one stop shopping for creation of VMs, LUNs, shares, etc. as well as bringing to the table additional entry points for automation tools to access all components of the virtualization stack over an industry standard interface. What I did not see much of were VMM client add-ins. I was hoping to see some vendors plugging into the VMM client itself to bubble up performance monitoring and statistics tracking from their underlying systems within the context of the Virtual Machine Manager. Most of the interfaces I saw on display were not embedded into the ‘single pane of glass’ but rather delivered via a separate interface in either a web browser or from an installable management application run on a desktop next to the VMM client. One vendor that I consider to be very advanced in the area of VM aware statistics and performance monitoring is Tintrí. I visited their booth to speak with them about what they currently offer for Microsoft virtualization. They do have an SMI-S provider already and are working on additional integration with SCVMM. It happened that while I was talking with them, the Microsoft PM for SCVMM was at their booth chatting with Tintri’s director of engineering. We discussed the potential integration points and areas within the VMM Client where it would make sense to bubble up the rich info that is already available via the Tintri web interface. In talking with the Microsoft PM I showed him the add-in that we have developed for Proximal Data’s AutoCache for Hyper-V and also asked the PM about some challenges with specific areas where we’d like to do a bit more but there doesn’t appear to be consideration within the SDK that is available and supported by Microsoft. One such item I will share with you in hopes that you may also echo this sentiment if it is something you’d like to see. The add-in mechanims that handles extenion registration cannot currenlty be automated. Meaning that although you may delivert the zip file necessary for the the Client to add the add-in, this cannot be worked into an MSI installation precedure. Channel 9 prezi clearly states that this is not possible and I’ve not been able to locate documentation of a method for doing it. This represents another post-installation task that a user has to perform following installation. I would love it if the setup could simply do the add-in registration as part of the installer.

 

#MSTechEd 2014 Day 2 – Swimming with the MS fishes #TheKrewe #MVPs #HyperV #Storage & more…

Hopefully with these posts you gain some insight into what I saw as a first time attendee of Microsoft’s TechEd conference. I’m new to this community, so please steer me toward any additional resources, people or streams that I should plug into so I have the optimal conference experience at my next TechEd.

I covered my first day of TechEd in one post. As the pace of the event picked up, I realized I would have to summarize each of the following three days in a followup post to be edited later. That ended up being done on the plane home and it was a giant wall of words that I knew had to be broken up into chunks.. That’s what I have now had time to do. Here is my second day. [UPDATE: I’ve since posted Day 3, and Day 4.]

Before jumping into Tuesday, let’s finish up Monday night. I attended an appropriately Texan, cowboy themed event followed by dinner with a few people I know that work for a leading hyper-converged infrastructure solution that  like Proximal Data’s AutoCache now has a generally available product that supports the ‘big three’ virtualization platforms, Hyper-V, VMware and KVM. Despite arriving late to the restaurant, the manger and even one of the owners came over to our table to let us know we should feel welcome to stay as late as we liked. The meal was delicious and conversation was paired perfectly.

MSTechEd Day 2 – Tuesday:

On the second day of TechEd my focus was on storage, storage, and storage. I made it a priority to attend breakout sessions related to this and sought out community members and SMEs I had researched beforehand.

Being fairly new to the Microsoft approach to virtualization, I specifically focused on storage because, as has been the trend ever since virtualization became a ‘thing’, with storage there is always a ton to take into consideration when designing a solution that offers services that are scaleable and performant.

In Philip Moss’ session on Monday’s entitled Service Provider Datacenter Architecture  #DCIM-B211

In the morning I found my way to the solution expo, where I met Jose Barreto in the MS booth. Chatting with Jose I realized I had found my ‘spot’ at the show. The next few hours flew by with some great convos with Microsoft customers and partners that came to chat with Product Managers and MVPs including, Philip March, Aidin Finn among others.

In the afternoon, there were actually two session at the same time that I wanted to attend.

As it turned out, DCIMB335 Microsoft Storage in Production… FAILED! …Well, I mean the session was cancelled.Since I had been debating over which of two conflicting session to attend, I’m actually glad in a way that the decision was made for me.

The Dell Maximizing Storage Efficiency with Dell and Microsoft Storage Spaces  session #DCIM-397 was another great prezi, including a ton of live demonstrations driven by clear, well scripted demos that you could tell had been thought out and planned to make it easy to know what you should be looking at.  I’ve seen ( & admittedly, likely presented myself) some demos in which it’s not immediately clear where or what on the screen you should be paying attention to as the presenter… click, click, click, oops, well, ummm, mumbles…  over here and then over here and here and well back there… and the audience is left asking, where? huh? This was definitely high quality session. The two Dell presenters were solid in their knowledge and made a point to complement each other perfectly while answering questions and taking us through at a nice pace, not rushed but not kindergartner speed either. Following the prezi I chatted with both of the presenters about the various product offerings they have in the enterprise storage and virtualization space and how/where the JBOD enclosures, controllers and rack mount servers all fit into Dell’s “Fluid Storage Architecture”. It was a great conversation that we took back to their booth and continued there on the expo floor. Having been a customer of theirs I attended several Storage Forum events and so I got to say hello to many friends working the booth.

On Tuesday evening my company, Proximal Data sponsored drinks together with Veeam  at an Authors Meet & Greet for Petri IT Knowledgebase. This event was held at Andalucia a nearby Spanish Tapas bar and restaurant where in addition to great spirits and delicious food we had an excellent mix of attendees including IT Pro end-users, customers, along with several service providers who are involved in delivery and implementation of Microsoft-based cloud and virtualized solutions, many of whom are recognized as MVPs and also contribute to the community in other ways, including as authors for Petri. In attendance were — List names — Damian Phynn, Aidin Finn,,

Drinks, turned into dinner which turned into moving next door to House of Blues where I caught up with a number of friends and community members from the industry, many of whom have ‘moved around’ lately. It was great to catch up on who’s working where and what they’re up to. The music being performed by jam session volunteers was fun and plenty of drinks and light snacks made for a great close of what was another exhausting but invigorating day at TechEd.

End Day 2 #BackToTheHotel…

#MSTechEd – Day 1: Noo-V wading into Microsoft #HyperV #MCP land

Day  1 of Microsoft TechEd in Houston, TX:  Monday was my first full day attending TechEd. [UPDATE: I’ve since posted Day 2Day 3, and Day 4. ] I arrived Sunday night after celebrating Mother’s day at home with my family in San Diego. The day started early with check-in at the conference center hall which is connected to the hotel I’m staying in but spread across several stories. Trekking up and down the escalators we made our way to the checkin area. There were a lot of people lined up to get their conference kit. Surveying the lay of the land, it seemed to be more or less your ‘typical’ mix of tech conference attendees. A few suits, quite a few polo shirts, lots of tees and even some shorts, it’s Houston in May! On interesting thing that’s different from other conferences I’ve been at is, TechEd targets users across the spectrum, infrastructure, servers, storage, apps, mobile. So basically everything! After check-in I got something to eat and then headed to the keynote.

For the keynote I was fortunate enough to be seated right up front. There were so many people that not everyone could fit into the general session space, so many were viewing remotely from the overflow area onsite or even on their own device(s). The gkeynotescreeneneral session covered a wide swatch of material from the Microsoft product offering, including everything from mobile devices, productivity suite and collaboration tools through Azure cloud hosted DR. We did of course hear the obligatory buzzword bingo including smatterings of ‘cloud’ and even had our ‘cloud dream’ painted for us. There was a section about 3/4 of the way through the presentation that dove into BI (business intelligence) that seemed to drive a number of attendees to leave early. Although BI wasn’t exactly right up my ally, I didn’t find it to be so awful that it would drive me to leave. Maybe they were just tired of sitting or wanted to get a jump on the breakout session. In the keynote I didn’t see much of what I had hoped to hear about which is the underlying infrastructure that is driving this cloud dream, ie. System Center Virtual Machine Manager, Hyper-V etc. There is a lot of ground to cover though, so I understand you can’t pack it all in.

 

Immediately following the keynote I headed over to the Microsoft Certification Center onsite where the highlight for the day came. As part of my trip to Tech Ed I had planned on taking advantage of the discounted exams. Before coming I studied for and passed an MTA exam on server fundamentals. This built my confidence. I’ve had about 6 months of hands-on with Hyper-V and System Center Virtual Machine Manager and I reviewed the MVA (Microsoft Virtual Academy) jump start video series for the 74-409, MCP Server Virtualization with HyperV & SCVMM exam. Even with this prep, leading up to the exam and even while I was taking it, I felt there were several areas that I could afford to strengthen. At the end of the exam I clicked Finish and held my breath. I scored an 812! Needless to say, I felt pretty good about this.

mvpme

The keynote over and my cert in the bag I rewarded myself with a quick sit down lunch and some good conversation. Then I pushed on to attend a few breakout session. Unfortunately my first choice of session was full by the time I made it to the room. Not to worry though, I’ll catch the recording. I staked out a spot at a power-up station picked up a few conversations, including running into fellow (former) San Diegan, Derek Seaman, now working for Nutanix in San Jose, CA. After a few more short chats and some snacking I made my way down to the Expo floor. I’ll admit I haven’t make the whole lap around the floor yet but I did spend a while speaking with a few of the MVPs and PMs at the main Microsoft booth(s).  My main topic of interest to explore is Storage as it relates to Hyper-V, so Storage Spaces, tiering, CSV Caching and the like. These discussions pointed me toward several spearkers’ sessions that are going on throughout the week. So I now have my agenda fairly well planned.

I am glad I made it to a really great session in the afternoon, by Philip Moss .  The topic was Service Provider Datacenter Architecture session   in 352D.[ recording available @Ch9

make money

I liked this slide from Philip’s session and the prezi that he gave because he honed right in on the point. Keeping it simple and delivering a solution. Philip dived headlong  including Storage Spaces tiering, SSD layer, CSV Cache,  writeback cache, heat. Storage Spaces: design considerations and all kinds of great insight on what matters to Service Providers: Making Money!

Tonight is a hall crawl followed by a number of vendor / org sponsored events. I’m going to finish making the lap around the show floor and then head off to eat and maybe hit a few of the evening events. If you’re here look me up on twitter: @kylemurley. Hopefully I’ll see you around.

 

[UPDATE: Posted about Days 2, 3, and 4 ]

ProfessionalVMware #vBrownBag LATAM – Sesión Informativa 2013-ene-10

Cross post from http://professionalvmware.com/2013/03/vbrownbaglatam2013ene10/

The following content is in Spanish, the language in which the webinar is presented.

Desde que se anunció el lanzamiento de los vBrownBag en castellano como expansión de la plataforma ProfessionalVMware.com venimos grabando las presentaciones realizadas cada jueves a las 6:00 pm hora pacífico (PST) (02:00 UTC).

Debido al crecimiento y la naturaleza dinámica de nuestro equipo, hemos experimentado algunas atraso imprevistos con el trabajo de trasladar y codificar los archivos con su respectivo metadata para los variados formatos (Vimeo, iTunes, RSS, etc.) (Sobra comentar que, aquí nadie recibe salario, vBrownbag es compuesto 100% de voluntarios).

Para facilitar el aceso al contenido hemos decidido hacerlo disponible por un canal de YouTube vBrownbagLATAM

Aquí tienen grabado del 2013-ene-10, Sesión Informativa e Introducción al #vBrownBag LATAM  en ProfessionalVMware.

(tip: se puede ampliar a pantalla completa y cambiar la calidad de reprodución a HD 720p).

Para no perder el webinar cada semana invitamos inscribirse como participante

http://bit.ly/BrownbagLATAM

Seguimos recrutando presentadores

http://bit.ly/BrownbagPresenter

Los temas están por determinarse y serán representativos de la necesidad y capacidad de los participantes.

¡Anímese a compartir y aprender juntos con los miembros de esta, nuestra comunidad vBrownbag en español!