[Dutch] Inschrijvingen voor de tweede Nederlandse Nutanix User Group meeting zijn geopend

Op 28 november zal in Hoofddorp in de tweede Nederlandse Nutanix User Group meeting gehouden worden. In het mooie nieuwe kantoor van Nutanix hebben we een mooi programma samen kunnen stellen.

Schrijf je hier in: https://events.nutanix.com/event/?id=1571327994-5da88ffab8960-5db058b9652ac

  • 14:00 –14:30 Registration & Welcome
  • 14:30 –15:00 Keynote: Ruben Spruijt
  • 15:00 –15:45 Community Speaker: Vishwapreet Mahabir (PQR) – Xi Leap & Xi Frame with demo’s
  • 15:45 –16:00 Break & Refreshments
  • 16:00 –16:45 Community Speaker: Bart Donders (ICT Partners) – Data Management in the real world
  • 16:45 –17:30 Nutanix Support: Martin Miedema and Mustafa Gulkara
  • 17:30 –18:30 Networking & Dinner
  • 18:30 –19:15 Interactive Session: Favorite Tooling, Wouter Kursten
  • 19:15 – 19:30 PM Take-aways & Closing

Hopelijk zie ik je 28 november in Hoofddorp!

Nutanix .Next 2019 Copenhagen Day 2

And Nutanix .Next 2019 is already over. Today I enjoyed the first Keynote again from the Executive lounge and hit the community booth afterwards. I don’t think there was a lot of really new tech in the keynote but I liked seeing it anyway. The interview with Caroline Wozniacki was great she sound like a very humble and down to earth person to me.

In the community area we had way too much fun distributing the 100’s of Nutanix Design Guides that where shipped to Copenhagen. So much fun that I actually forget to go to the sessions where I wanted to go but hey I met some nice people and really felt like Operah with giving away those books.

The closing keynote had two parts, the first with Dr. Katie Boumann who worked on creating the image of the black hole the last few year. I barely understood 20% of what she was saying but I loved hearing about the process. The second part was with Kit Harrington from Game of Thrones, while I never really liked the show I loved hearing all of his stories.

And see you next year in Paris!

Nutanix .Next 2019 Copenhagen Day 1

Having arrived in Copenhagen on Sunday I have had plenty of time to go for some sightseeing but yesterday things really started for me at the Nutanix .Next event in Copenhagen. I haven’t done any sessions to be honest but had a full schedule anyway. First we started of at the keynote with the NTC’s getting a shoutout from marketing Chief Ben Gibson and one of us on just before at the celebration of 10 years of Nutanix: Andrea Mauro. Several announcements where made during the keynote like Metro availability for AHV, one minute RPO for Xi Leap and ESXi availability for Xi Leap as well. For me the highlight was Julie O’Brien (VP of marketing ) doing a tech demo on stage.

What followed after the keynote was a lot of networking and offcourse the yearly NTC lunch. While it was only a small group it actually was great to catch up with everyone. Too bad Angelo didn’t have a microphone because he was singing with the music as usual.

In the afternoon I did a roundtable session about a new type of certification that Nutanix is exploring. This was with a small group of ntc’s and I have to say the discussions where great and what is actually the future of us engineers and what does an engineer actually do?

For the evening keynote Angelo got us in the executive lounge (that hadn’t been used a lot during the day according to some of the staff). Too bad the part with Dimitri Vegas and Like Mike wasn’t broadcasted but they made up for that at the awesome party in the evening. They did a great set with lots of oldskool music that got the croud really going.

(yes my smartphone can’t handle 120+db’s of music)

 

Looking forward to Nutanix .Next in Copenhagen

This year will mark my third visit to the European Nutanix .Next conf, this time in lovely Copenhagen. This year though will be my first time as the Nutanix User Group Champion for The Netherlands. While the sessions will be awesome I am mostly looking forward to meeting the international #vCommunity once again.

My trip will start Sunday evening since the airfield closes to home only flies to Copenhagen on Sunday evening or Monday morning at cr*p o clock. This means I have spare time on onday and Tuesday that I will spend sightseeing if the weather permits. Hopefully I can get some people together to do a guided bicycle ride through town.

If you want to meet up during the event than hit me p on Twitter or look at the community area, there’s a good chance of seeing me there. I will be trying to visit a variety of sessions from architectural deep dives to new technology like Nutanix Mine with a side meal of IoT and the Edge. And I am certainly looking forward to the closing keynote because it sounds like it will be awesome. Maybe not as awesome as the keynote with Dr. Jane Goodall but that one is hard to top anyway.

So will I see you at .Next for some coffee and stroopwafels?

 

 

vExpert 2019? check! Why does it matter for me?

Last week whilst on holiday in Disneyland Paris I received the email every aspiring and existing vExpert was waiting for.

This means that for the fourth consecutive year I have been named a vExpert.

What is a vExpert? (or any other community award like NutanixNTC)

Per the vExpert site the criteria for becoming a vExpert are:

If you are interested in becoming a vExpert the criteria is simple. We are looking for IT Professionals who are sharing their VMware knowledge and contributing that back to the community. The term “giving back” is defined as going above and beyond your day job. There are several ways to share your knowledge and engage with the community. Some of those activities are blogging, book authoring, magazine articles, CloudCred task writing, active in facebook groups, forum (VMTN as well as other non VMware) platforms, public speaking, VMUG leadership, videos and so on.

I totally agree on the above description, for me a real vExpert shares knowledge in one of many ways. But blogging, speaking, tweeting, podcasting, writing isn’t the only way. We answer questions online and offline and if we don’t know the answer than we have an awesome backstop to ask questions called the vCommunity. Is it technical only you might ask? Absolutely not! I have seen hundreds of job changes by now because of the vCommunity. People were helped with personal issues, hell even home deco tips and tricks are shared. I think it’s just in our nature to help one another.

Yes it’s also about advocacy but the sharing of information is all voluntary. Do you want to tweet or blog about stuff? No-one will force you but they do appreciate it if you share news.

One things advocacy program members are also good at is providing feedback. Not only to the software vendor but if you want some feedback about a possible blog post, presentation idea, news item or piece of hardware most of us will give you that feedback. Just be prepared because we can be brutally honest if it sucks!

But there are over 1700 vExperts, is it about quantity or Quality?

This is a point where I personally disagree on how the program is run. I have the idea that they want to grow just to grow and for me the selection criteria could be tightened quite a bit. I value growing but please do it by adding quality. If you look at smaller programs like some of the vExpert subprograms or others like the VMware EUC Champions or Nutanix NTC’s they are most times better managed, get more briefings, nda information and events. Not that the vExpert program is managed badly or doesn’t have an awesome party at VMworld but things just get more complicated at this scale.

But does the program still matter to you?

It certainly does! Through the vExpert program I have managed to grow personally and professionally but also made boatloads of friends online and offline. All the extra’s like licenses, swag and things like that are fun but nothing is as good as knowing you have some great people who are always happy to help you in any way possible!

I want in too, how do I become a vExpert?

Currently the sign ups are closed but until they open again (probably somewhere in June) you can start doing some things already:

  • Start a blog, most people do it as their own knowledge base. Write about what you experienced at work or a customer so you won’t forget it for next time.
  • Get a twitter account, follow a bunch of people and interact with them.
  • Help others out in places like VMTN, Reddit.
  • Present at a vmug or at your employer about things that could be interesting to others. This could be as basic as explaining how your homelab is setup.

If you need help or feedback on your blog or need help on how to build your presentation I am always happy to provide my 2 cents.

When the sign ups are opened again contact your local vExpert pro with how to tackle the application form. You can also ask me or any other vExpert you might know personally.

All new Nutanix Test Drive now available

The last few weeks I was invited to and involved with beta testing of the all new Google Cloud based Nutanix Test Drive running AOS. Previously it was hosted on Ravello and running on a version of the Community Edition. When you go to http://nutanix.com/testdrive just enter your details and you’ll be running in no-time. Please make sure that you copy the admin password from the next page. You should also receive an email with these credentials but you never know with the spam filters these days.

After this you can hit the start test drive button, accept the next certificate warning and you’re set to run the testdrive. Use admin as username and the provided password to log on.

First you will get a guided tour through the basic features and when you finish that you will probably have about an hour and 50 minutes of the original 2 hours left.

Personally I was amazed with the speed of the testdrive. I have no idea where it is hosted but it was full steam ahead from start to finish. The console you get is the basic Prism console for a cluster, not Prism Central that allows you to manage multiple clusters.

 

Honored to be named Nutanix Technology Champion once again

Just like in 2017 and 2018 I have been named a Nutanix Technology Champion for 2019. While I haven’t been involved with the tech as much as in 2017 at least I tried to keep up to speed in 2018 by playing with the community Edition. Besides that I started two things on the Nutanix front in 2018: getting an NPX bootcamp to The Netherlands which I attended in September and trying to start a Nutanix User Group in The Netherlands and that will have it’s first meeting the 1st quarter of 2019! Besides that I attended the Nutanix .Next on tour event in Utrecht and of course .Next EU 2019 in London.

Being an NTC is for me all about the vCommunity, we try to help others but if we need a hand others will help you as well. Just ask Nutanix’ awesome community manager Angelo Luciani and he will tell you all about it 😉

 

2018 has been awesome but I am 100% sure that 2019 will be even better!

What’s (in) my bag for Nutanix .Next 2018 London

This post is fairly similar to my posts for .Next Nice in 2017 and VMworld US of this year. For security reasons I decided to go with the XD Design Bobby again. Since it’s a lot harder to open when on my back I feel it’s a bit more secure while travelling on the London Underground. A couple of other changes also have been made, the bubm bag was replaced by a bit smaller pouch from the same maker and my Sony headset has gone to my wife since I settled on the Jabra Move I got from Cohesity at VMworld. The Jabra just sits a bit more comfortable for me and fits perfectly in it’s own bubm case.

For the rest there are the usual suspects: Xiaomi 10k battery pack, HP Probook 440 G5Microsoft designer mouseRoundcube Rewirable  USB Travel adapter and some various bits & pieces. My suitcase is simply packed with lots of stroopwafels and all the Nutanix NTC gear I have.

Nutanix Technology Champion, what’s in it for you?

This week it was announced that applications for the 2019 Nutanix Technology Champions (NTC) are open. Despite not having worked with Nutanix in production in a while I have been a member of this great piece of vCommunity for two years now. Angelo, who runs the program, listed the benefits to include the following:

  • Early access briefings about Nutanix products and announcements
  • Access to private betas and insight into ongoing product development
  • Participation in exclusive meetings with engineering teams
  • Access to discussions on the Nutanix NTC slack channel with internal teams
  • Exclusive activities at our annual .NEXT conference including pre-show briefings
  • Support and Mentorship for those seeking NCP, NCAP and NPX career development

Let’s dive into these benefits a bit deeper.

Early access briefings about Nutanix products and announcements

Since I don’t work with the tech this is what really keeps me up to speed on what Nutanix is doing. While sometimes it’s hard for them to do it really early with the fast pace of developing new features or tools this still gives the edge for bloggers who like to blog about this. But it also gives us the possibility to provide feedback before it’s released for new ideas or enhancements.

Access to private betas and insight into ongoing product development

Again due to the high pace of developing at Nutanix the first part doesn’t happen too often but the second one does every now and then. Engineers pitch ideas during regular calls and use our reactions to those to see if it would be worth implementing.

Participation in exclusive meetings with engineering teams

See the previous point, it’s really valuable for both sides to give and receive the input on new developments.

Access to discussions on the Nutanix NTC slack channel with internal teams

Being a customer or partner this is the icing on the cake for you. Besides communicating with your fellow NTC’s every Nutanix employee can have access to our Slack Channel. I have been on the phone with support during an issue while on Slack I was able to give logs and other information that otherwise might have taken a bit more time to end up on their side. In here there are no stupid questions and if the person with the required knowledge isn’t in the channel someone else will invite them in. And it isn’t about Nutanix software only, if someone at Nutanix has the knowledge we will get them in there. Want to ask CEO Dheeraj Pandey a question? He’s in there as well!

Exclusive activities at our annual .NEXT conference including pre-show briefings

We always have a NTC lunch at .Next and several briefings up front so we know what to expect. Angelo is also a selfie maniac at conferences so you probably won’t get away without one posted on Twitter. Everywhere you go you’ll find another NTC around so like most conferences it’s a great place to make new and meet old friends.

(and no I never look good on selfies :D)

Support and Mentorship for those seeking NCP, NCAP and NPX career development

For this again the Slack channel is essential. After a call about the NPX certification ealy this year I pitched the idea to have a bootcamp in The Netherlands and that turned out to be a success as you can see in my blogpost about it.

Other things

Are there any other advantages than those that Angelo names? Yes there certainly are, all NTC’s get a free subscription to Pluralsight and on a regular base we have calls with vendors that also supply us with nfr licenses. For example we have access to hycu, Bitdefender and after the comming call also  Unitrends.

Conclusion

It doesn’t matter if you are a partner, customer or member of the greater vCommunity being a member of the NTC program is great benefit. Angelo really strives to help us grow in whatever we do and succeeds in that! If it isn’t about the knowledge then it is about expanding your network in this awesome thing that we call the vCommunity.

My experience at the Nutanix NPX bootcamp

The preparation

After a Nutanix Technology Champions websession we had earlier this year I thought it was a good idea if there would be one in The Netherlands. The only requirement was to supply at least 12 people and also to leave some spots for Nutants. While I reached out to the current NTC’s Bert van der Lingen reached out to the NPP’s he trained in the Netherlands. It didn’t take long before we had enough people interested to start the process. The location was also arranged quickly at the Dutch Nutanix offices while the date was set for september 24-28th.

The coaches

Since we had 25 people signed up for the bootcamp there where three coaches assigned for this week: Tim Buckholz (NPX #12), Bruno Sousa (NPX #15) and Crescenzo Oliviero (NPX #16). Including in their coaching role they also where the Nubank customer for whom we had to create a new design. While being the customer we had to ask the right questions but if we weren’t sure about something they also showed great patience with us in explaining things.

The Bootcamp

In the time leading up to the bootcamp itself I was still apprehensive about my own (lack of) experience but lots of people told me that it shouldn’t be a problem. I went in with an open mind that it would be a great learning opportunity. Looking back at the week this was the best way to look at the process. No matter what you designed the NuBank customer always managed to find flaws and gave good feedback on what was lacking but also on what was good.

https://twitter.com/tbuckholz/status/1044243355977351168

One constant factor was change! The first day was a shock to most: Sizing can be rather difficult you know. On each day new tasks were added like networking, storage but also Business Critical apps and VDI you could expect curveballs to be thrown at any time! For this my open mind probably was a bonus because it was clear some people had issues with this. If you didn’t care about failing but still did the best you could in building the designs you would learn the most in my opinion. During the week we also learned to ask more and more questions to the customer, something we hardly did during the first day.

During the afternoon on day four it was time to build that last design so we could do a proper defence of it for the Nubank customer. For the presentation each team had 45 minutes and time management was difficult. It’s really easy to go down a rabbit hole in explaining nerd knobs while there is no time for that.

Even during the last presentation it was clear that the newly tech created during the week was needed in some cases. Our team required wireless ipmi while others had wireless load balancers, wireless 40GB lines and other wireless stuff.

My own verdict

For myself I consider this one of the best weeks of learning I have ever done. There’s hardly anywhere to work with a such a group of dedicated and motivated people. And it proved even more how good and important the vCommunity is in sharing knowledge and caring for others.

I would like to thank the three awesome coaches and also my teammates Wouter Iliohan, Nick Maeckelberghe and Arjan Hendriks for being such good sports this week.