Scott's Weblog The weblog of an IT pro specializing in virtualization, networking, open source, and cloud computing

Partner Exchange Wrap-Up

I just finished the last session of Partner Exchange 2008 here in San Diego, CA, and wanted to post some thoughts and information from the event. There is quite a bit of information that I can’t discuss because it is under NDA, but I wanted to at least share what information I could.

First, Site Recovery Manager (SRM) looks to be a very interesting product. I had the opportunity to participate in a hands-on lab with SRM, as well as to participate in a business continuity/disaster recovery (BC/DR) design workshop that incorporated SRM as well. SRM will definitely have an impact on VI architectural designs (more on that in a moment), so VMware architects need to be sure to consider the possible addition of SRM at a later date when designing solutions for customers. I’m looking forward to the final release of SRM and I hope to have more to say about that product after its final release.

As a side note, I’m glad to see VMware using the VI client plug-in architecture to support SRM, something I’d wish they’d do for products like Stage Manager and Lifecycle Manager.

I also had the opportuntity to spend some time with VDM 2.0, VMware’s desktop broker for VDI solutions. I haven’t yet decided whether I like VDM better than Leostream’s broker; VDM is definitely more focused around pool provisioning and pool management but seems—upon initial review, at least—to lack some of the flexibility that Leostream offers with regards to managing desktop sessions. I need more time with VDM to make sure that I fully understand the product before I can make any calls as to which desktop broker I really prefer.

The design workshops, one for BC/DR and one for VI architecture, were very entertaining and rather helpful. My team didn’t win for BC/DR, but did win for VI architecture (sweet!). I did not, unfortunately, have time to participate in the VDI design workshop. It was helpful getting into a huddle with some other senior engineers and solutions architects, sharing information, hammering out a design, and then presenting that design to a panel and to our peers. This was also a great way to get people thinking about VCDX and the requirements for that advanced certification, which include presenting and defending a design. I’m thinking that I’d like to adapt that format into some internal workshops within our own company and I’m hoping that I can get approval to do so.

Overall, the conference was pretty good. The choice of venue wasn’t the greatest in the world; having to walk back and forth constantly from one tower to the other was a bit tedious. I’m sure that it’s difficult to find the right venue for events given all the criteria involved, but I’d recommend to VMware that a slightly larger venue would be very beneficial next year.

That’s it from my end. If you happened to be at Partner Exchange this year, feel free to add your thoughts and impressions in the comments.

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