My favourite VMworld 2017 sessions (US and EU)

As it is July and both VMworld’s are about to happen in 2 to 2,5 months, it’s time to take the next step in preparing for the biggest virtualization events in the world. The session catalog is online and although the schedule builder will be in a couple of weeks, I decided to give you guys a heads up of which sessions I think are essential for a great VMworld.

For the first time I will be presenting my own breakout session in Barcelona and be part of a group discussion in Las Vegas, which I wrote about in this post. I won’t pitch these two sessions in this post (although I assume that these are already on your favourites list 🙂 ).

As a VDI Junkie you might think that all of my favourite sessions would be related to that same topic, but what I like to do at VMworld is to extend my horizon and take a look at other things. So here is an overview of what I think are really promising sessions (and sure, some of them are still VDI-related).

A Closer Look at vSAN Networking Design and Configuration Considerations [STO1193BE]

A session by Cormac Hogan and Andreas Scherr

In this session, speakers will guide you through some of the most common VMware vSAN network configurations. We will cover topics such as the pros and cons of certain NIC teaming options, supported network topologies, L2 versus L3, witness traffic separation, two-node ROBO deployments, stretched cluster deployments, and, most importantly, “gotchas” related to networking in vSAN deployments.

Why this one? From a VDI perspective we see more and more vSAN being included as the storage platform because VDI is a great use case. Deploying vSAN seems like an easy thing to do (check the box and your done), but it is a lot complexer than thought. So I recommend this session to get more insights on vSAN-network-stuff.

Automating Horizon 7.x Deployments with VMware Cloud Foundation [PBO1254BE]

A session by Simon Long and Todd Simmons

A major focus for VMware Cloud Foundation is the automation of the deployment and maintenance of the backend infrastructure for the VMware Horizon virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI). This session covers the built-in automation of the deployment of VMware vSphere, VMware NSX, VMware vSAN, VMware vRealize, and VMware Horizon components that VMware Cloud Foundation offers. It will also describe the integration of VMware App Volumes in this infrastructure and the ability to dynamically build this infrastructure with the growth of your desktops, resulting in turnkey VDI deployment. All you need to bring are the desktop images.

The main reason is that automation is the key to less failures. Both in deployments as well as in second day operations. As this covers most of a VMware VDI stack, I am really exited to see how Simon and Todd got things automated.

VMware Cloud on AWS: A Technical Deep Dive [LHC2384BE]

A session by Frank Denneman and Ray Budavari

VMware Cloud on AWS brings the enterprise-class VMware software-defined data center software to Amazon’s public cloud. Couple the best enterprise software with the best data center operator in the world, and you get an on-demand, elastically scalable private cloud deployable anywhere in the world. VMware Cloud on AWS enables customers to use a common set of software and tools to manage both their AWS-based and on-premises vSphere resources consistently. This session will take a closer look at key features of VMware Cloud on AWS, such as elastic cluster and networking functionality (VMware NSX).

The one session that I am most excited about. VMware Cloud on AWS (also known as VMC) has been announced last year and since the announcement, small portions of information are becoming available. But no real big news. So when I noticed this session in the catalog, I got really curious. VMC sounds to be the next big thing. Imagine what happens if other standardized solutions like Horizon can run on top of the VMC hosts? A full stack dedicated VDI solution ready to extend your desktop pools within hours..

vSphere 6.5 Host Resources Deep Dive: Part 2 [SER1872BE]

A session by Frank Denneman en Niels Hagoort

Today’s focus is on upper levels/overlays (software-defined data center, VMware NSX), but proper host design and management remains the foundation of success. These new “overlay” services present a new consumer of host resources. Ironically, it’s the attention to these abstraction layers that returns us to focusing on individual host components. This talk delves into CPU (nonuniform memory access) and memory configuration and zooms in on how virtual networking influences virtual machine configuration and host design. We will show you a collection of command line tools that provide you with unparalleled insight into the behavior of resource consumers (virtual machines) and providers (hosts). This information contributes to optimal scaling decisions and allows you to right-size your virtual data center to achieve consistent performance.

This was one of my favourite sessions of VMworld 2016. A technical deep like it should be. Last year, the session was fully booked in no time, so be on time with adding it to your schedule.

Delivering 3D Graphics Desktops and Applications in the Real World with VMware Horizon, Blast Extreme Adaptive Transport, and NVIDIA GRID [ADV1607BE]

A session by Matt Coppinger and Luke Wignal

This session will cover advances in remote display technology to deliver 3D graphics accelerated desktops (Windows and Linux) and applications with VMware Horizon, VMware Blast Extreme Adaptive Transport (BEAT), and NVIDIA GRID. The combined solution helps deliver an immersive, high-quality user experience for everyone from designers to mobile professionals to office workers while improving user productivity and increasing corporate security. We will take real-world examples of customer deployments, discuss the challenges customers face, and show how VMware and NVIDIA solutions have helped resolve these issues.

What most of you VDI guys out there will recognize, is that with every new Windows release Microsoft is requesting more resources for a single desktop. At first it was just based on CPU and RAM resources, but Windows 10 has shown us that for a good user experience you should consider adding GPU’s to your hosts. Knowing how to configure your protocols and what hardware to use is essential and my main reason to check out this sessions (next to the fact that Matt and Luke are great speakers).

Extreme Performance Series: Performance Best Practices [SER2724BE]

A session by Reza Taheri and Valentin Bondzio

Are users complaining of poor application performance? Demanding more resources to compensate? Do you know where to start looking for issues? Are you confident you have the right configuration in place? Attend this breakout, deliver by VMware’s most experienced performance gurus, to answer these questions and more. This session will explain the most important performance practices that need to be applied across the stack from application to hardware. Based on real customer case studies, the goal of this session is to empower you to identify the most common performance issues and remediate them by applying best practices. Leave with the tools, methodologies, configurations and confidence you can provide maximum performance to all your users and their applications.

The main reason to check out this session at VMworld is that performance is one of the design qualities that is included in most designs with multiple requirements. And so it is really important as an architect to know how to design for a great performing infrastructure. The next reason would be to listen to Valentin as that guy blew me away during his session at the VMUG in Belgium.


Barcelona and Las Vegas

All of these sessions are included in both Barcelona and Las Vergas. When searching in the content catalog, just search for the first 3 letters and the 4 digits. In that case you will find them in both. So SER2724 instead of SER2724BE and your good.

Hope to see you all at VMworld and keep following mee for more updates. If you need more information on preparing for Barcelona, check out this post.


Johan van Amersfoort