Announcing Mastering VMware vSphere 5.5

Well, the title kind of says it all—yes, there will be an update to the popular Mastering VMware vSphere 5 book, with new content for the vSphere 5.5 release announced today at VMworld. Availability of the new title is expected in late October or early November, but I believe it’s already available for pre-order on Amazon.

However, this book represents more than just another title in the Mastering VMware vSphere series. It represents a “changing of the guard,” so to speak. In order to understand why, allow me to share with you the story of how my very first book, Mastering VMware vSphere 4, came to be. This is a story that very few people know.

I suppose the story starts in 2008. As a blogger, I’d gained some visibility as a result of my liveblogging at VMworld 2007, and in 2008 I met Chad Sakac. Chad is now a hugely popular figure within the VMware community, but at the time he was “just” the leader of a little-known group within EMC. (This is the group that would later become known as the vSpecialists.) Chad and I chatted, geeked out on some VMware stuff, and became buddies. I didn’t really think too much about the connection; we were just a couple of virtualization geeks making a connection.

Then came early 2009. Chad contacted me, and said he’d been approached about writing a book. Unfortunately, he was unable to write the book; would I be interested in writing it, he asked. Heck yeah! Writing a book had been an item on my bucket list for a really long time. So Chad made the connections to Wiley/Sybex, contracts were signed, and at VMworld 2009 Mastering VMware vSphere 4 was released, quickly becoming a massive hit. I joined Chad’s vSpecialist team in 2010, and remained there for 3 years before transitioning to VMware earlier this year to focus on network virtualization.

Looking back on this series of events, it’s easy to see that this was a huge opportunity I’d received. So, when it came time to discuss writing the book that would become Mastering VMware vSphere 5.5, I asked myself: “I was just given this opportunity. Can I do the same for someone else? Can I pay this forward?” It was at that point I decided that I would not be the lead author for the next revision; instead, I would pass the torch on to someone else—someeone else who had “Write a book” on their bucket list. I wanted to give someone else the same opportunity I’d been given.

This is why Mastering VMware vSphere 5.5 represents a changing of the guard. This book embodies my decision to pay it forward, to give another worthy individual—in this case, Nick Marshall—the opportunity to do something he really wanted to do. Many of you know Nick; he’s been involved in the VMware community in a number of ways, through support of the vBrownbag Podcast as well as through his work with Alastair Cooke on AutoLab. In addition to that, he’s just a really nice guy, and that counts for something, too. I’m really thrilled that Nick has taken the lead with this book, and I’m really looking forward to seeing where he takes the Mastering VMware vSphere series.

So, if you’re looking for an authoritative reference to the vSphere 5.5 release, I would encourage you to pick up Mastering VMware vSphere 5.5. Nick and I, along with our co-conspirators Forbes Guthrie, Josh Atwell, and Matt Liebowitz, have done our best to produce something that is useful and informative. I hope that you agree.

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  1. Andrew Laxton’s avatar

    Hi Scott,

    any ETA as to when you will add this to



  2. Ariel’s avatar

    very, very happy to see an update and just in time for what is looking to be a very exciting release. Congrats!

  3. Steve Walker’s avatar

    I am new to the world of VMware and am looking for a book that will help me understand the key topics, this new book sounds like just the ticket..

  4. David Frederick’s avatar

    I am looking forward to this book! Will there be a Kindle and/or Safari Books Online version? Thanks!

  5. slowe’s avatar

    Yes, there will be electronic versions of the book available.

  6. prasannakumar’s avatar

    Hi Scott,

    I am Linux Admin, Is this book cover for the Beginners who is entering into VMware. Please advise

  7. slowe’s avatar

    Prasannakumar, the book will help those that are new to VMware as well as those who might already be familiar with the product but are seeking a deeper understanding of how it works.

  8. prasanna’s avatar

    Thanks for your reply. do you have any books for Redhat openstack and KVM

  9. slowe’s avatar

    Prasanna, I have not written any books about those topics, but I would imagine there are books out there. I don’t have any specific titles I can recommend.

  10. Kumaresh’s avatar

    Hello Scott,

    Still am in confision which one need to buy, whether MASTERING VMWARE VSPHERE 5 or MASTERING VMWARE VSPHERE 5.5?

    I’m looking in depth knowledge of vSPhere product, please suggest


  11. slowe’s avatar

    Kumaresh, buy the version of the book that matches the version of vSphere you’d like to learn. :-)

  12. Pavan’s avatar

    Hi Scott / VMware Experts,

    I basically don’t know anything about VMware; however the industry is requiring knowledge and experience of it. I would like to learn, about VMware. But don’t know where to start. Any recommended sites? Books? Resources?

    Thanks in advance!


  13. Pavan’s avatar

    I want to learn VMware, from where should I start ?

  14. slowe’s avatar

    Pavan, the book mentioned in this blog post might be a good place to start.


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