A selfish [virtualized] look at 2016-2017

(image credit to Ken Horn, https://twitter.com/kdmhorn)

So the last year and a half has been wild.


In 2016, I left my employer and pursued a new opportunity with a data protection company called Zerto, which is where I reside and work today as a solutions engineer. Zerto provides an enterprise-class solution for business continuity, disaster recovery, and application mobility, and as someone that has been doing data protection for about a decade, it’s very refreshing to work on a platform that a.) works well and b.) gets people excited about data protection, a traditionally dry topic.

I can get into Zerto and what it does in detail in later posts, but I want to reflect on the opportunities that this platform has given me, especially as it revolves around virtualization.

First off, my new employer has given me a huge opportunity to get into the inner workings of ESXi and vSphere as a whole. As a technologist, I’m here to discover new and interesting ways to solve problems, and vSphere is a rich platform to develop creative solutions with. I hold current VCP5 and VCP6 certifications but didn’t constantly touch many of the things that VCP gets into. With Zerto, I have had the opportunity to explore production installs of VSAN, get into the weeds of the vSphere API, and truly understand what those esoteric VMX files are really telling us about a VM!

Secondly, I have had the pleasure of meeting a ton of folks in the virtualization world. Fellow geeks and tinkerers that have the same goal of solving problems and doing cool stuff to further their missions are always fun to talk to. Jonathan Frappier (@jfrappier) and Mike Marseglia (@mmarsreally gave me the push I needed to get into the VMware and virtualization community, and from there I started networking with the Providence VMUG crowd as well as the Boston VMUG UserCon regulars.

Third, I now have a paper trail of presentations that I have given to the VMUGs at Rochester, Boston (Twice!), Hartford, and Providence. The great thing about VMUGs is that they are opportunities not just to talk about your company or product but to really connect regarding virtualization and the challenges and problems that you can solve with them. For example, my presentation at the Providence VMUG was a “back-to-basics” discussion regarding having a plan surrounding disaster recovery. Far too many organizations rely on the “throw your hands up and panic” mode of disaster recovery, and I discussed how to incorporate vSphere and Zerto into a higher-level holistic level of DR planning.

So here’s where and when I presented at VMUGs in 2016 and 2017:

So, with that said, where do we go from here? Public cloud integration. vSphere on AWS. 2016 and the first half of 2017 were pretty darn good… let’s see how the next year and a half shapes up!!



IT Pilot cleared for takeoff, runway 5



Well, here we are.

I haven’t had a domain name registered in a while but as I start getting serious about becoming an active member in my region’s IT scene, I figure it’s time to commit to a blog.

Here’s a little about me: I am a presales engineer for a large global corporation, covering a variety of established (named) accounts and territory accounts. I focus primarily on backup and recovery hardware and software, and over the last few years I have developed an itch for virtualization, namely vSphere.

I’m a big proponent of solid backup and disaster recovery in both the enterprise as well as at home, and it’s my mission to show both organizations as well as end users the value of a properly maintained backup paradigm.

There are several purposes to this blog; posting my personal thoughts regarding backup and recovery is only one of them. I hold a current VCP certification, of which I am working towards renewing, and my colleague Jonathan Frappier convinced me that I should document my steps towards recertification via blogging. Not a bad idea… I get to discuss my steps, get feedback, learn from others, and contribute back to the community.

You’ll also see other things, like my flying hobby (the title picture should be a tip-off).

So, that’s it for now. Backups, DR, virtualization, and flying. IT Pilot has begun!