VMworld 2014 Public Voting Now Open

Boy, time really seems to be going by faster the older I get. I can’t believe it’s already been a year and we now preparing for VMworld 2014. This year I’ve submitted three separate Ask the Experts session and it’s up to you to get them included in the session agenda of VMworld 2014.  As you know, these are some of the highest rated, most attended and funnest sessions of VMworld. 7 years strong, let’s have some fun and get your questions answered by a panel of amazing experts.

For those of you that haven’t attended one of my Ask the Experts sessions here’s what you can expect… A packed audience, a panel of some of the best industry experts out there and a forum for you to ask the questions you need answers to. These industry titans have lived, breathed and defeated some of the most complex designs and problems. vSphere? vCloud Automation Center? vCenter Operations? Horizon View? Bring it on!

Remember, these sessions will not be picked up unless you VOTE! So Please, go check out the agenda, filter it by Rick Scherer and vote for these three great sessions! (Click here to vote)

Remember, the Ask the Expert sessions are driven by the audience… no script, no presentation, just a panel of experts hungry to answer your questions live! Please be sure to vote for these great sessions to ensure they’re scheduled at VMworld 2014!

Thanks for taking the time to vote, but please don’t stop once you’ve voted for my sessions. There are a number of other excellent sessions from people like Duncan Epping, Chad Sakac, Scott Lowe, Chris Colotti, and Matt Cowger. As well as a  joint session between Chad Sakac (EMC) and Vaughn Stewart (Pure) which shouldn’t be missed!

Thanks again and I hope to see you at VMworld US and Europe!

Created on May 7, 2014 by Rick Scherer

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VMworld 2013 – Ask the Experts Panel Sessions

Wow…another year, and another VMworld coming up.  I can’t believe how fast time goes by, and how fast things evolve in the tech industry. I know it’s cliche to say that this will be the most exciting VMworld, because I say that every year, but honestly every year brings something new and this year is going to be no different.

Lots of changes happening to VMware, specifically around the reorganization of people and products. It finally looks like VMware has a clear cut focus, Datacenter Virtualization (Cloud/SDDC) and End-User Computing. Pivotal was formed to take 100% of the Next-Gen Application space and other products (ie: Zimbra) were sold off. VMware can now focus 100% on what they’re good at. I think we have to thank Pat Gelsinger for the disruptive yet extremely good changes VMware has gone through the past year.

So, enough blabbing, why are we really here? Well, I’ll post a full informative VMworld post in the next few days or so which will detail out my schedule and what sessions I think  people should be checking out.  This post is to remind people of two great sessions that I’ll be running at VMworld.

Ask the Experts is a highly successful session that I’ve ran for the past 6 years and this year it’s only going to get better! I’ve broken it out into two separate sessions, one hosted by expert vBloggers and another hosted by VMware Certified Design Experts (VCDX). Don’t let the titles fool you, these sessions aren’t about asking how to get into blogging, or how to obtain your VCDX (although, those are both valid questions). These sessions are for you, the audience, to ask any question your heart desires around any VMware focused topic. Why isn’t this working? How should I architect my vCloud landscape? What type of storage layout should I use for VDI?

With that said, the success of these sessions are strictly dependent on YOUR participation. So, please register for VSVC4569 – Ask the Expert vBloggers and VSVC4570 – Ask the Expert VCDX’s, attend the session and get vocal! Ask some questions!  If you’re a little shy, or perhaps not attending VMworld San Francisco you can also submit your question prior and if there is time we’ll get to it on stage live at VMworld! So please, if you do have a question feel free to submit a questionnaire with one of the links presented below. If you’re attending VMworld SF I hope to see you there, if you’re not extend a hello to me on Twitter! (@rick_vmwaretips)

To submit a question for VSVC4569 – Ask the Expert vBloggers, visit http://bit.ly/14EcEKS

To submit a question for VSVC4570 – Ask the Expert VCDX’s, visit http://bit.ly/15o9O5S

Created on August 10, 2013 by Rick Scherer

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VMware VCAP-DCA #1

Last week on Twitter I publicised that I received the official document stating I achieved my VMware Certified Advanced Professional – Datacenter Administration Certification in vSphere 4. I’ve known for a few months that I passed the DCA exam because of e-mails that VMware Certification sent out, but what I did not know was my actual certification number.

Participants of the VCP, VCAP and VCDX certification tracks are assigned certification numbers when they successfully pass the required exams for that track. For example, I’m VCP #7315 which I received when I passed the VCP2 exam and I’m VCDX #21 which I received when completing all necessary steps for VCDX certification.

So I received in the mail the typical “Welcome Kit” that you receive with your certificate. In this kit I received the Congratulations letter, my free copy of Workstation, a nice vCAP hat and the actual certificate. To my surprise my number is VCAPDCA-1 which means I was the first person to take and successfully pass the DCA exam. Quite exciting!

I’m a fairly humble person, as most people would say about me, but I am pretty stoked about being #1 and by no means would I consider myself in the same category as VCDX #1. Thank you VMware for allowing me to be part of such as great certification beta program! I can’t wait to see what other great programs you come out with.

Created on February 11, 2011 by Rick Scherer

Posted under Certification.

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VCDX4 Annoucement

It makes me very proud to announce that I received my VCAP4-DCD Beta Exam results and much to my surprise (honestly) I passed!

Congratulations on passing the VMware Certified Advanced Professional on vSphere4 – Datacenter Design exam! You will receive an email notification from certification@vmware.com once your certification status has been confirmed and added to your VMware Education Transcript (allow 10 days).

Based on the following VMware Education diagram, currently holding the VCDX3 certification and passing the VCAP4-DCD exam upgrades you to the VCDX4 certification.

VCDX4 Upgrade Path

Thank you VMware for allowing me to be part of such a great education program. Now it’s time to celebrate a little!

Created on January 11, 2011 by Rick Scherer

Posted under Certification.

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VMware VCAP4-DCD BETA Exam Experience

Just like Jason Boche and Chris Dearden I was able to take part in the VCAP4-DCD Beta experience. I took my exam in San Diego on Tuesday (11/9) which was a lot nicer than having to drive up to Orange County like I did for the DCA exam.

Both Jason and Chris did great write-ups on it, the exam was 131 questions and they gave you 3hrs 45mins to complete. The first portion is the NDA acceptance then on to a questionnaire asking you to set your level of understanding. The test had three different types of questions, including;

  1. Traditional Multiple Choice (select 1, 2 or 3 of many)
  2. Visio-like tool to create architecture drawings
  3. GUI style tool where you drag options and drop them on answers

I was able to finish the exam with about 15 minutes to spare, and luckily for me I answer every single question as I was surprised to see no options for going back to review after you finished. I did think I would have a final opportunity to provide input at the end of the exam, but unfortunately I was not presented with that option but I did leave some good feedback on questions that were incorrect or if I felt were unnecessary. A few of the questions did require vendor specific knowledge, I answered these to the best of my ability but left comments that I do not think having vendor specific questions is a good idea for this style of exam. Oh BTW, the Visio style tool is a LOT better than the one in the VCDX3 Design Exam….but it does take a little time getting use to it!

I did not have any fun confrontations with the Pearson staff like Jason did, but I did get into a good discussion about security with a Pearson employee about their new “Palm Vein Scanning Device” that they’re pushing over traditional finger prints. Pretty cool stuff as it ensures identity protection but keeps their information database unappealing to law enforcement (for e-discovery types of things – ie: you leave finger prints at crime scenes, not vein layouts).

Anyways, I feel like I did fairly well – it was a good experience and the information in the blueprint was extremely helpful in my preparation.  I’m excited to see what my results are, if I pass I obtain the DCD certification as well as an upgrade to VCDX4.

Created on November 11, 2010 by Rick Scherer

Posted under Certification, Training.

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VCAP4 and VCDX4 Certifications

Have you been wanting to start down the VCDX3 track and were a little hesitant because you knew the VCDX4 would be shortly approaching? Well here is some information that could help you with your planning. VMware has recently made public some changes to their certifications program.

As many of you already knew there is the VCP certification which requires taking a VMware Approved class as well as passing the VCP exam (currently VCP410). Then early last year they added the VCDX3 program which requires a VCP but also adds in two exams (Enterprise Administration and Design) as well as a submitting a VCDX Application (design document) and then sitting through a defense.

For vSphere4 they’ve added a new certification track, VMware Certified Advanced Professional (VCAP4) with two available specialties, Data Center Administration (DCA) and Data Center Design (DCD). If you haven’t already guessed it they are basically the upgradesto the Enterprise Administration and Design Exam necessary for the VCDX3. The problem was that many people wanted to take that next step in their virtualization education and certification, but unless you’re a pre-sales engineer for a partner or a systems architect the need of obtaining a VCDX is low (unless you’re a vDiva like me).

So what does that mean if you’ve already taken the VCDX3 Enterprise Administration and Design Exam? Not to worry, there is an upgrade path for those of you that have already started your journey (or already have a VCDX3). Simply take the VCAP4-DCD exam when it is made available (around August) and you’ll be qualified to obtain the VCDX4 (or will be upgraded if you’ve already obtained a VCDX3). The chart on the right highlights your certification options and the path you would take depending on where you’re at. The * denotes the exam will be available at a discounted price.

The VCAP4-DCA exam will be available around mid-July and the VCAP4-DCD exam around the August time-frame. VCDX4 defenses will still happen at VMware global events (VMworld, PEX, etc). But now you have almost endless options and certification choices when it comes to VMware.

Created on May 30, 2010 by Rick Scherer

Posted under Certification, Training.

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What’s New with Rick @ VMwareTips

VMwareTips and the website…

Thought I’d give all of my avid readers an update on VMwareTips and my personal life.  For those of you that attended VMworld 2009 you already know there wasn’t too many exciting announcements made.  We have VMware View 4 coming with PC over IP (PCoIP), SRM 4 with its NFS support and more hype of the vCloud and VMware Go, a tool for ESXi users to deploy and manage your systems via a web based tool. Expect some write-ups soon on View 4 and SRM 4, those are set to be released before the end of the calendar year.

As of August 2009 we’ve hit over 70,000 visits per month and over 18,000 unique visitors!  The growth of the site has been phenomenal over the past year and I have no one to thank but my readers!  I pledge to you that the next year will only be better!

Mastering VMware vSphere 4

Earlier this month Sybex published Scott Lowe‘s masterpiece “Mastering VMware vSphere 4”which is available on Amazon.com. I had the honor to be the technical editor of this great book and I truly feel this is a great tool for those of you just learning VMware vSphere or simply need a quick reference tool.

VMware Certified Professional 4 (VCP4) Study Guide

I’ve been asked by McGraw-Hill to be the technical editor on an upcoming publication focused on the VCP-410 exam. This book “VMware Certified Professional 4 (VCP4) Study Guide”should be released by January 2010 and will be available on Amazon.com.  Don’t forget that the requirements for the VCP4 certification are successful passing of the VCP-410 exam and also sitting through a certified VMware training session.

VMware vSphere 4 Administration Instant Reference

In what would be the third VMware book I’ve worked on, Sybex has once again asked me to be a technical editor on Scott Lowe, Jase McCarty and Matthew Johnson’s upcoming release “VMware vSphere 4 Administration Instant Reference”.  Think of this as a smaller pocket guide of the Mastering book. Perfect for those crunch moments, or perhaps some light bathroom reading? Pre-order now on Amazon.com!

TrainSignal vSphere Training

David Davis is at it again with the next edition of their popular video based VMware training series. TrainSignal has asked me to be the Technical Editor for this product and I promise we’ll provide nothing but the best video based training available for VMware vSphere.  Also be sure to keep an eye out for the Cisco Nexus 1000V video training which I will be authoring, this will be included in the vSphere series and should be added around mid November.

I’ve saved the best for last…

Most of you already know, via Twitter, but it is official.  I am now a VMware Certified Design Expert (VCDX).  I am one of a few select bunch (< 25), I couldn’t be happier to be part of this elite crew!

Created on September 24, 2009 by Rick Scherer

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VMworld 2009 Schedule

VMworld is about to get under way!  This is probably one of the busiest weeks of my year, and the preparation typically takes 1-2 weeks in itself!

I just wanted to share with you my schedule for next week, in the event you might be interested in meeting up with me and possibly getting your hands on some FREE VMwareTips.com swag! (see right).  I’ve got VMwareTips.com buttons, stickers and polo shirts (Special Thanks to VKernel).

For the open times in my schedule, I’ll most likely be browsing the VMworld Solutions Exchange, probably at the NetApp (Booth 2102) and VKernel (Booth 1832) booths. So be sure to come find me and show your support for VMwareTips but wearing a button or sticking a VMnut sticker on your laptop!

Sunday, Aug 30th
9:00pm – Arrive at Thirsty Bear for VM Underground Party

Monday, Aug 31st
7:30am – LAB12 / Scripting vSphere (Powershell/Perl) / Nob Hill C
10:00am – Head to VMware HQ for VMUG Leaders Day
5:30pm – VMworld Welcome Reception

Tuesday, Sept 1st
8:00am – General Session
10:00am – VM3433 / Technical Deep Dive: Host Profiles / Room 120
12:00pm – NetApp Mini-Theater Presentation / Booth 2102 *presenting
12:30pm – VMUG Members Lunch
2:00pm – EA3234 / Virtualizing SQL Server / Room 104 *presenting
4:00pm – TA4060 / The Path to COS-less ESX / Room 123
5:30pm – VMware SoCal VIP Reception
6:30pm – NetApp VIP Dinner Hosted by Dave Hitz
10:00pm – Private Vendor Party

Wednesday, Sept 2nd
8:00am – General Session
9:30am – LAB07 / VMware vCenter Lab Manager / Salon 1
12:00pm – NetApp Reference Roundtable / Room 270 *presenting
3:00pm – EA3347 / Analyzing Application Stack / Room 308
4:30pm – TA2525 / vSphere Networking Deep Dive / Room 120
7:00pm – VMworld Party featuring Foreigner

Thursday, Sept 3rd
10:00am – TA2262 / vSphere Enterprise Stability / Room 306 *presenting
11:30am – TA4341 / Virtual Network Performance / Room 135
1:00pm – TA2259 / Ask the Experts / Room 303 *presenting
3:00pm – TA2650 / Take PowerCLI to the Next Level / Room 304
4:30pm – TA2259 / Ask the Experts (Repeat) / Room 310 *presenting
6:00pm – Private Meeting

Friday, Sept 4th
8:00am – VCDX Defense! / Foothill D

Whew! So that’s pretty much it.  Boy, this schedule is busier than the average work week for me!  Anyways, I hope to see all of my fellow bloggers and readers at VMworld and be sure to ask me for your free swag if you see me!

Created on August 28, 2009 by Rick Scherer

Posted under VMworld.

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VCDX Design Exam Beta Results

After three LONG months (and the word LONG is an understatement), I finally received the results to my VCDX Design Exam Beta!

Dear Rick,

Congratulations.  You have successfully passed the VMware Design 3 beta exam.  A formal score report will be sent to you via Pearson VUE in August.  This was the third of five components that you will need to complete in order to achieve the VMware Certified Design Expert (VCDX3) Certification. Your participation in the beta exam and continued patience has been greatly appreciated.

Next Steps:

The next component to becoming a VCDX3 is to complete a Design Application.   Attached with this email is the template and format that you will need to complete and submit.

There was a lot more in the e-mail, basically there is a Design Application that needs to be submitted which consists of a comprehensive VI Architecture Design along with a $300 registration fee. Applications need to be submitted by August 14th to be guaranteed a defense pre/post VMworld.

Once your application is approved and your defense is scheduled there will be a $900 fee for the actual defense, these activities will be scheduled around industry events such as VMworld, Partner Exchange, and other Geo held meetings. Also, T&E is not covered by VMware.

Well, wish me luck :) I will be submitting my application hopefully by next week and getting scheduled post VMworld (Friday, hopefully).

Created on July 29, 2009 by Rick Scherer

Posted under Certification.

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VCDX and VCP Testing at VMworld 2009

Jon Hall from VMware Certification wrote a post on the VMTN Communities page the other day, which Duncan Epping made me aware of.

VMware will be providing onsite testing services at VMworld 2009. A great deal is available on the VCP exam (see my post at http://communities.vmware.com/thread/222191?tstart=0), but more importantly, the VCDX Enterprise Administration and Design Exams will be offered! You must be pre-authorized to take these exams, so if you are already in process to take the Enterprise Administration Exam, contact certification@vmware.com to inquire about the availability of the exam at VMworld. You can register at Pearson VUE for the Design Exam, but again you must already be in process and have authorization from VMware to take the exam. The link for registering with Pearson for the Design Exam is http://pearsonvue.com/vmware/vmworld/ . For the Enterprise Administration Exam only, you must contact us directly.

This reminded me that I still haven’t heard from VMware on the results of my VCDX Design Exam beta.  I was really hoping that I would receive my passing grade (hopeful huh?) and schedule the defense during VMworld.

Well, I called Tina (she’s so famous now!) at VMware and chatted about this.  She sounded hopeful that the results would be sent out by end of business tomorrow (Friday 7/24).  She also informed me that in addition to VCP and VCDX exams being available at VMworld, that VMware will also be scheduling VCDX Defense sessions during the week.  Great news!

Duncan also had this to say on his blog post,

For those who want to do the Enterprise Exam check the mock exam that has also has just been released: Enterprise Administration Mock Exam.

Dave Convery also posted about discounts for these exams, which might be a nice incentive to get you guys studying!

Created on July 23, 2009 by Rick Scherer

Posted under Certification, VMworld.

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