Donate Your Old Technology

We’re moving house again, such is the joy of renting, and this is a great time to go through your things and chuck out stuff you don’t use, clothes you don’t wear and all the other crap you’ve accumulated. But what do you do with all this stuff? You could eBay it and make a quick buck, put it up on Gumtree or Craigslist or just leave it outside your place with a note stuck to it which says “free to a good home”.

Or, you could donate it. I’m very lucky in that I’m working for a great company and earn a decent wage. I have a roof over my head and I can afford to eat. It’s taken a while to get here but nonetheless here I am. There are, however, less fortunate souls out there who need a helping hand every now and again and donating your stuff is a great way to reach out and help. One such organisation is Freecycle and as far as I know they’re worldwide. Go look them up.

If you’ve got some old technology kicking around then please consider donating it. If you’ve got old computer parts lying around and they could make up a working system then take the time to put it together, install Linux on it and donate that. You could even go a little bit further and offer to show whoever you donate to around the OS. A little bit of knowledge goes a long way.

Same goes for any screens, peripherals and GFX cards. Even old sticks of RAM can help someone. Not using your Xbox or PS3? Give it away. You’d be amazed at the amount of people out there who are scouring sites like Freecycle looking for something as simple as a keyboard and don’t have the money to buy one.

So, if you’re wondering how you can make a small but significant difference in the world then this is it.

 

 

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vCHS, Books & Puppet.

Oh yeah, I have a website. I completely forgot about that. Things have been going well at VMware. I am at the very heart of the vCHS build process putting together the compute, storage and networking components that make up the platform. I’ve passed my VCP-Cloud recently, which was nice and I’m now taking some time out whilst I prepare myself for VCAP mode. In the meantime I’ve been loading up on literature and my two most recent purchases have been the rather excellent Networking for VMware Administrators by Chris Wahl and Steven Pantol and the Official VCAP5-DCA book written by Steve Baca and John B Davis. They’re both out to buy now and if you’re serious about upping your game then these are my recommendations.

I’m also exploring Puppet. It’s no secret that we use Puppet at VMware to build our army of world dominating automatons servers and I decided that this was something I needed to explore further. Especially if I am to bring some kind of value to the team by working on vCHS. And also, because DevOps.

So like all good adventures I’m starting at the beginning, I’ve downloaded the Learn Puppet VM, enrolled in the course library and have started to understand my types, titles, attributes and values. It’s early days yet but my goal is to build a simple setup in Workstation comprising of VCSA, a couple of hosts and some kind of storage.

Once I’ve got my head around how I’m going to go about that I’ll post my findings. It should be fun and where better to learn about this kind of stuff than at VMware.

Happy days.

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We’ve moved.

So we did it. We finally made the move to Lahndaaaaahn. Well, Surbiton actually but it’s close enough. The move on the whole went without a hitch, just the usual panic about not getting everything packed in time and the removal dudes running off with our stuff but none of that actually happened and the removal dudes did a sterling job. It’s been a week now and ‘er indoors has pretty much got the place looking ship shape and Bristol fashion. I’m best off out of the way. Menfolk will know what I’m talking about.

Other than the usual BT home movers drama my new job at VMware is awesome. I can’t tell you anything about it but needless to say I’m having the time of my life and it’s only been 5 days! And my girlfriend managed to find a job first time around as well. First interview, BAM! And she got the job.

Too much awesome.

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I am a vCHS Cloud Engineer at VMware.

My mind is still blown to tiny little pieces. A while ago I saw an advert for a vCHS Cloud Engineer based in London and I thought “there’s no way I could work at VMware, those guys are like crazy smart geniuses from the future”. Or something.

Anyway, I read the spec. And then I had a series of mild palpitations. And then I read the spec again. It turns out I could do this job and whilst my brain was still trying to process all of this my hands took over and somehow submitted my CV. It seems that the vNerd planets were aligned that day because as of November 4th I will be an employee of VMware. I’ve never wanted to work for somewhere as much as I have VMware and if you’re reading this then I don’t need to tell you why.

I’m very proud to say that I’ll be a member of the vCHS team and I am very much looking forward to being part of something that is changing the way we look at the cloud and ITaaS.

Which is a bit mad! See you in the future.

VMworld 2013 PHC5605-S – vCloud Hybrid Service

If you’re locked into VMworld Europe this year you’re probably aware that vCHS is being heavily promoted. This video is from session PHC5605-S and is presented by Mathew Lodge, Vice President of VMware vCloud Hybrid Service Business Unit and Christopher Rence, CIO of Digital River, one of VMware premier Early Access Program customers. If you’re looking for more info on vCHS and want to see some live demonstrations then this is something you’re going to want to watch.

vCloud / vCHS Announcements at VMworld Europe 2013

There’s some interesting bits coming out of VMworld Barcelona at the moment regarding the new VMware vCloud Hybrid Service. I’m a huge advocate of all things VMware but this particular service has me really excited as it’s something that just makes sense. If you’re already a VMware vSphere customer and you’re looking to expand, streamline or consolidate then this service really is a no-brainer. Hands down, this is the new IT-as-a-Service.

Remember P2V? Well say hello to V2C. Using the vCloud Connector you send your existing workloads up into the vCHS service into an already existing cloud node.

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It really is that easy. As an example in my current employment we have a DR site. It’s basically a mish-mash of hardware that’s been swapped out with newer kit at our main site. Your DR site deserves the same level of attention as the main site. Except in our case it hasn’t had that same level and it’s now time to consider upgrading so that it can keep up with the required load. Our main site has in the region of 120+ VMs running on 8 hosts and our DR plan stipulates that we need to have in the region of 50 – 60 VMs of all shapes and sizes to keep the business running. Currently our DR site has 1 host of the same spec as the hosts at the main site. You don’t need to be a virtualisation expert to work out that if we bring up those VMs and allow the required number of staff to login then the load is going to go through the roof.

So instead of throwing money at upgrading the DR infrastructure, why not send it off to a vCHS solution? Let vCHS take the load. It’ll be manned by qualified VMware staff so we know it’ll be looked after and it’s one less thing for us to worry about.

This of course is just one simplified scenario and it’s one of many but it’s something that just makes sense.

Of course I’m a little biased and I’ll let you know why in a while ;)

If you want to know more about vCHS then hop on to twitter and follow @vCloud

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PDF Reference Collection

Since purchasing my iPad Mini I’ve been filling it up with reference material to help me with my VMware studies. Hopefully you’ll find some of these as useful as I have. I’ll add more as I get them.

VCP510-Blueprint-StudyGuide – ValcoLabs
The-Unofficial-Official-VCAP5-DCA-Study-Guide – ValcoLabs
IaaS_StudyNotes1 – vBrownBag
vcp-cloud-study-notes-20130406 – Paul Grevink
VDCA511_Study_Sheet – Chris Wahl
VCAP_CIA_5_Study_Sheet – Chris Wahl
Diagram-VMware-vCloud-Director-Networking-Architecture-v1-0 – Hypervizor
vCAT 3.1 – VMware (Online Documentation)