Goodbye VMware PSO – Hello VMware EUC Global CoE!

Now that yesterdays VMware EUC announcement hysteria has subsided, I thought this would be a good time to make my own VMware EUC announcement. (For those of you who were under a rock yesterday, here is my favorite post talking about What's new in View 5.1 (Beyond Marketing).

After nearly two years of delivering customer projects with VMware Profesional Services (PSO), I have been given the opportunity to join VMware's EUC Global Center of Excellence (CoE). This is a move I am really excited about.

So what will I be doing?

From my understanding, I will be working closely with VMware's EUC products, both old and new. Testing out our new products, creating IP and enabling the field. So there should be plenty of lab time, which is never a bad thing. I will also have the opportunity to provide feedback about our products directly to the engineering teams. Another large part of the role is to present at VMWorld, PEX and other conferences and seminars.

If you are not aware of VMware's EUC product suite/vision, take a look at the following video.

Pretty cool stuff hey?!?

I am hoping that this move will also give me more time to blog, to help get more material out there for you guys. And it will also mean less travel, Happy Days!

I have a couple of months left to finish off my currently View project, then I will be moving over on July the 1st.

Cannot wait!!

London VMUG – Thursday, May 17th, 2012

Agenda 

From 10am…..

  • Using vShield to Drive Efficiency and Costs Savings – Stephen Porter, Trend Micro
  • Desktop Transformation with Liquidware Labs – Dan Falconer, Liquidware Labs
  • Tintri Presentation
  • VMTurbo Labs
  • The vCenter Appliance – Hugo PhanVMware
  • Climb the Stack and Pimp your Cloud with VMware vFabric – Peter Holditch, VMware
  • Flexpod: The Flexible Converged Infrastructure – Chris Kranz
  • Help, My VDI Project is Hell! – Julian Wood
  • Management and Orch’n – What, Why & How – Steve Bryen
  • The vMarket – Skills in Demand for the Next Five Years – Neil Mills
  • Over to You: Design Me a Highly Available Virtualised Infrastructure – Darren Woollard
  • Writing VMware Apps for Novice Programmers – Ricky El-Qasem

As usual there will be vBeers afterwards from 17:30…..

Don't forget to Register as you cannot just turn up on the day. Hopefully I will be making an appearance.

NorthWest England VMUG – Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

I just wanted to bring this to peoples attention. 

Registration Now Open: Northwest England VMUG Meeting 
Join us for the inaugural Northwest England VMUG meeting taking place on Wednesday, May 2, 2012. 
Registration is now open and available to all VMUG members. This is a great opportunity to meet with your peers to discuss virtualization trends, best practices, and the latest technology!

Meeting Agenda

  • 13:30 Registration
  • 13:50 Introduction to VMUG
  • 14:00 IBM Presentation
  • 15:00 Refreshment Break
  • 15:20 EMC Presentation
  • 16:20 VNews
  • 16:50 Questions and Wrap-Up
  • 17:00 vBeers at Printworks Manchester following the meeting

Looks like a great agenda for their first VMUG. You can follow the official NW England VMUG Twitter profile for the latest VMUG news.

VMware Configuration Maximums – Not Targets

minefieldSomething I've noticed a lot work creating designs for customers is the customer focusing on vSphere Configuration Maximums and the aim to reach those maximums. This concerns me a lot when I hear this and also the regularity that I hear this.

VMware Configuration Maximum's are values that have been tested by VMware QA to verify that the product will function correctly.
 
Yes, this can mean that VMware's software may continue to function adequately above the maximums. However because this has not been tested, VMware cannot be certain it will function correctly and therefor will probably not support your business should you encounter issues.
 
Another thing to bare in mind is that these Configuration Maximum's are just that, they are the maximum you should go, they are the "Do not cross" or "trespassers maybe prosecuted". Configuration Maximums are not something for your business to aim for. Reaching a maximum does not mean you will get the best performance from your environment, although I'm sure some CFO's would disagree with me.
 
Conclusion
 
When designing your VMware vSphere/View/vCloud environment aim to stay well within the maximums, this will allow for unexpected growth without the need to make dramatic changes to your design. As a rule of thumb, where possible, allow for a 10% buffer between your environment maximums and the VMware Configuration Maximums, this will allow for administrative errors.

PCoIP: Troubleshooting – Part 2

teradici-pcoip-logoThis is the second part of the PCoIP Troubleshooting set of post that I will be working on over the coming months. In this part I am looking at how to use the new PCoIP Log Viewer to view Real-Time/WMI PCoIP Stats.  I'll take you step-by-step through the PCoIP stats, explaining what each counter means.

To read on please use the following link: PCoIP Troubleshooting – Part 2. For those of you who many not be familiar with the Teradici PCoIP display protocol, you can find some good links here: http://www.simonlong.co.uk/blog/pcoip/

The other parts to this series are:

Keep an eye out for these pages which hopefully will be coming very soon.

VMware View Persona Management

Persona Management, previously called RTO Virtual Profiles. A sleeping giant in my eyes. It's soo simple to install and configure but can offer you riches beyond your wildest dreams. OK, maybe a little over the top, but it is a really cool product and very underrated.

With VMware ViewTM 5, VMware introduces View Persona ManagementTM. View Persona Management preserves user profiles and dynamically synchronizes them with a remote profile repository. View Persona Management does not require the configuration of Windows roaming profiles, and you can bypass Windows Active Directory in the management of View user profiles. If you already use roaming profiles, Persona Management enhances their functionality.

Persona Management downloads only the files that Windows requires at login, such as user registry files. When the user or application opens other files from the desktop profile folder, these files are copied from the stored user persona to the View desktop. This algorithm provides performance beyond that achieved with Windows roaming profiles. 

As it's still pretty new, detailed information on the InterWeb is limited so I thought I'd put together a post displaying how Persona Management functions. Installation/Configuration information can be found in the View 5.0 Administration Guide or in the VMware View Persona Management Deployment Guide.

Persona Management Logic Flow

Persona Management is based around Logic Flows which runs through a set of checks. Each step has to be completed before the next to ensure the process completes successfully. I will try and explain at a high-level what happens in each of the following Logic Flows:

  • When a user logs in
  • Whilst the user is logged in
  • When a user logs out

Read the rest of this entry »

PCoIP Log Viewer 2.0

This is a tool I've been using almost daily in my current project and for the past few months. Now It's finally been released to the public! The tool has been created by Chuck Hirtsius – one of the EUC Specialist's within VMware. 

The release you see here today is the first release of the tool that provides log file visualization as well as real-time monitoring of the PCoIP WMI counters.

PCoIP Log ViewerThe PCoIP Log Viewer and the Log Parser can be downloaded from the following website: http://mindfluxinc.net/?p=195 Instructions on how to parse the logs ready for the Viewer should also be available on that link. 

Now you have the tool, I guess you'd like to know how to make use of it? As I mentioned, I've been using it extensively to help me troubleshoot poor PCoIP performance. To help myself remember and to enable others to understand all of the PCoIP counters better I have put together a PCoIP Troubleshooting page. This should have all of the information you need to make the most out of this brilliant free tool.

PCoIP: Troubleshooting

teradici-pcoip-logoThis is the first part of the PCoIP Trilogy that I will be working on over the coming weeks. In this part I am looking at how to troubleshoot PCoIP issues using the new PCoIP Log Viewer. I'll take you step-by-step through the PCoIP log information, explaining what each counter means. I have also added a small case study which I'm hoping will help you inturprut the data a little better, allowing you to diagnose PCoIP issues on your own environment.

To read on please use the following link: PCoIP Troubleshooting. For those of you who many not be familiar with the Teradici PCoIP display protocol, you can find some good links here: http://www.simonlong.co.uk/blog/pcoip/

The two other parts to this series are:

  • PCoIP – Best Practice
  • PCoIP – Optimization

Keep an eye out for these pages which hopefully will be coming very soon.

VDI Paging Files – Big? Small? Or None At All?

VDI - Paging FilesFor the past few months I have been spending a lot of time looking at the performance of Large VDI environments, where the problems lay and where performance can be improved.

When designing VDI environments, a couple of things that you should consider are the .vswp file and the GuestOS paging file. In this article I am going to focus on the Paging file and hopefully in the not so distant future I will write a post about the .vswp file in a VDI environment.

What is point of the paging file (also known as the pagefile.sys)?

RAM is a limited resource. Virtual memory was introduced to help remove that limit.

Most modern operating system now use Virtual Memory. Virtual memory is a memory management technique. Applications running on a GuestOS reference memory using virtual memory addresses which are then automatically translated into RAM addresses by the hardware. These virtual memory address spaces are divided in pages or block, usually of 4KB. 

If RAM resource is exhusted, the operating system will move 4KB pages of the virtual memory onto the computers hard disk to free up the physical memory (RAM) for other processes. In Windows operating systems, these pages are stored in the pagefile.sys. 

A good way to think of this is;

Imagine a restaurant that has just open for the evening. When customers (Processes) arrive they get allocated a table (RAM) to sit and eat at. As the night goes on the restaurant get busier and free tables (RAM) begin to run out for the new customers (Processes) coming through the door. To free up spare tables (RAM) the waiter asks customers (Processes) who have finished eating if they wouldn't mind moving to the bar (Virtual Memory) where they can continue drink.

Without the paging file, if the physical memory becomes full, applications including the operating system will have to waiting until physical memory becomes available before it can be stored in RAM ready for the CPU to process. As you can imagine this causes massive performance problems.

In summary, you NEED to have a paging file.

Read the rest of this entry »

VOTE NOW – Top Virtualization Blogs 2012

Another year has flown by!! You may or may not have heard that the vSphere-Land.com Top Bloggers in VMware and Virtualization Award nominations have been released and voting has commenced.

Once again I'm both pleased and honoured to have my Blog on the shortlist amongst some of the worlds top Virtualization Bloggers.

So if you'rw a regular reader of the various Virtualization Blogs, it would be great if you could take some time and vote for your favourite blogs. These bloggers, including myself work very hard to make sure you have the information you need to do your jobs, please give them a minute of your time to vote. 

Much appreciated.

For more information visit www.vsphere-land.com

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