Goodbye VMware PSO – Hello VMware EUC Global CoE!

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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!!

Thinapp: VirtualComputerName

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I have been creating a new Thinapp in which I am trying to trick the application into thinking it is running on the same computer each time it is executed. Little did I know, this was soo easy to do. I had been using ProcMon to find out which registry the software called to get the ComputerName from and then tried to add in a custom registry entry into the Thinapp virtual registry.

As it turns out VMware have given us an entry in the package.ini that we can use instead: VirtualComputerName. So in the package.ini this is what the entry now looks like:

VirtualComputerName=VIEW-PC

Now every time this Thinapp is run it will think it's running on a computer named VIEW-PC.

Thinapp: Files Being Created In The BIN Directory

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Whilst testing a Thinapp today I noticed that every time I ran the Thinapp a file related to that software package was being created in the Thinapp bin directory. This isn't something that I want to happen. The file created was named the same as the ComputerName of the vm it was being excecuted on. So as you can imagine, if you have desktop estate of 10,000 desks, it could get quite missy.

With the help of Peter Bjork one of the VMware Thinapp specialists we worked out that the Entry Point that we were using to excecute the Thinapp didn't have a WorkingDirectory defined in the package.ini. This is what the entry point in the package.ini looked like:

[Application.exe]
Source=%ProgramFilesDir%\ApplicationDir\Application.exe
Shortcuts=Application.dat

As you can see, there is no WorkingDirectory defined. If a WorkingDirectory is not specified on an Entry Point the location of the Entry Point will be the working directory, in my case the bin directory. I edited the package.ini to read the following:

[Application.exe]
Source=%ProgramFilesDir%\ApplicationDir\Application.exe 
WorkingDirectory=%ProgramFilesDir%\ApplicationDir\
Shortcuts=Application.dat

I rebuilt the Thinapp and now the application creates this application file in the application directory. Sweet.

Bureaucloud – Cloud Infrastructure on Demand *Free Trial*

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Last week I was introduced to a new UK based PAAS provider Bureaucloud. They are currently offering free trails for prospective customers and as I was looking for some cloud hosting for a new personal project I've been working on, I thought this would be the ideal opportunity to try out this new provider.

I thought I would feedback my experience to you guys as I was really impressed!

The Bureaucloud Platform

Of course, when enquiring about the free trial I dug a little to find out a more about the platform and what the hosting platform was running on. I managed to speak to directly to the founder, Tim Boeckmann who give me a brief technical overview:

The solution is built on Cisco, HP and Netapp, with robust high-speed network connectivity, latest HP 64-bit servers and 15K FC disk. VMware where possible, Veeam for backups. The platform has been fully stable since May without any network downtime.

The platform is hosted in West London, at Telecity Powergate (a tier 3 DC with all the iso accreditations you might expect). This is the perfect compliment for anyone looking at hybrid cloud solution between East and West London due to the excellent connectivity into the datacenter.

Our experience is looking after all size enterprise environments from a service provider perspective including migrations, strategic planning and growth. We understand the needs of a small business by being one. We have worked with virtualisation for many years.

The Cloud solutions used on the platform is vCloud from VMware. As you can imagine I was delighted at this as I already know my way around this product and If the infrastructure is configured correctly it should be a solid, stable platform.

My Bureaucloud Experience

So after grilling the founder I was happy and signed up for a free trial. Within an hour I had my account details, I was logged in and firing up my vApp. ONE HOUR! Happy Days to that. During the configuration of a my vApp I had an issue with the networking, I contacted their support team which had it fixed very quickly. Maybe TalkTalk should take note? 🙂 (Personal grudge.)

My vApp has been running for about a week now with no problems, not that I would expect any as the platform is running on vSphere 5 and vCD1.5. If the service continues at this level until the end of the free trial, I will continue to use them to host my servers. Their prices are competitive I'm sure you'd agree and I was really impressed with their support team.

Bureaucloud Summary

These guys are offering a free trial….. If you are looking for Cloud provider what better way can you try out their service. Give them a go, I'm very happy so far. But I'll let you know if that changes. 😉

Keep an eye on their blog page  for a new post that will go up shortly, they are having a Christmas Competition. One lucky new client will win 4 days consultancy around "Cloud Strategy and Migration".

V-INDEX.COM

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My attention was drawn to this website today, I hadn't seen it before so I thought I'd share it with you in case you had missed it too.

V-index is an online virtualization industry study performed by Vanson Bourne, an independent market research company. It is based on a survey of at least 500 enterprises across the US, UK, France and Germany and is designed to measure 3 parameters – virtualization rate, consolidation ratio and primary hypervisor in use.

Some interesting info on there, check it out.

Management Of Your vCloud Is Done Via The vCD Because….

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vCloud

Trying to admin your vCloud using the vSphere Client might become a little confusing.

WAN VMotion – Now Supported by VMware

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A couple of months ago i spoke about the possiblity of using VMotion over a WAN connection. Well yesterday at VMWorld, VMware announced that long distance VMotion was now supported for up to 200 Kilometers.

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VMware vCenter Linked Mode, spanning Time Zones? Apparently Not!

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After reading through the ESX 4.0 and vCenter 4.0 Server Installation Guide I noticed the following requirement for adding vCenter to a Linked Mode group;

“All vCenter Server instances must have network time synchronization. The vCenter Server installer
validates that the machine clocks are not more than 5 minutes apart.”

Now this got me thinking…..

If a company had two Data Centers, lets say one in London and one in Amsterdam, They’ve decided they wanted to use vCenter Linked Mode to help them manage both Data Centers from a central location. According to VMware’s documentation this wouldn’t be possible due to the time difference between the two cities, London GMT and Amsterdam GMT+1 would mean that the vCenter Server clocks would be 1 hour apart.

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VMware vSphere 4 Configuration Maximum Practice Exams

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Tomorrow (17th July) I have the pleasure of sitting the VCP4 vSphere 4 Beta Exam, all 4 hours of it..

One of the main things I remember from taking the VCP3 exam was the amount of Configuration Maximum questions that VMware ftel the need to put into it. So I downloaded the vSphere 4 Configuration Maximum PDF and began reading, reading again and reading again. But nothing seemed to stick in my memory.

I have decided to make myself 3 mini vSphere 4 Configuration Max Practice Exams, so I can test myself over and over until I have learnt them. I haven’t added all the maximums to the exams, just the ones I think might be included in the VCP4 Exam.

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WAN VMotion – A Step Closer to a Private Cloud?

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VMware has just released a joint Proof of Concept with Cisco titled VMotion between Data Centers.

Just lately I’ve been doing a lot of extra reading about how Cloud computing is shaping and evolving and I believe this to be another step taken by VMware to closer themselves on becoming a “Private Cloud” solution. Will we soon be seeing Virtual Infrastructures spanning separate Data Centers?

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