Last week I was lucky enough to be able to attend the UKVMUG, hosted at the National Motorcycle Museum near Birmingham.
Travelling up early Wednesday evening, I made it to the venue at about 18h45 – just in time for the Veeam sponsored vCurry evening. Here I met up with a few fellow bloggers and local London VMUG members, such as, Jane Rimmer, Jeremy Bowman, Darren Woollard, Julian Wood, Steve Bruck, Stu McHugh, and Jonathan Medd amongst others! An excellent vCurry was had along with a drink or two. After that it was back to the hotel in preparation for the UKVMUG the following day.
Registration started at 08h00 with all attendees receiving a welcome pack and VMUG lanyard with their details. Breakfast and teas/coffees were served and everyone had a bit of time to chat before Alaric Davies (of the London VMUG team) opened the proceedings. After this, Joe Baguley did the opening keynote. His keynote was interesting, and generally well received, keeping everyone riveted as far as I could tell.
Proceedings were slightly delayed and led to Alaric asking if attendees wouldn’t mind forfeiting the first coffee break – much to the dismay of most, including Simon Long 😀
Throughout the rest of the day, I managed to attend the following sessions:
- Nimble Storage | Stress-Free Data Protection for VMware and VDI
- Alan Renouf and William Lam | Practical Automation for Everyone
- Mike Laverick | Building my vCloud Director Home Lab
- Duncan Epping and Frank Denneman | Deep-Dive Discussion Group
In-between sessions I managed to chat with Automation gurus William Lam, Alan Renouf and Jonathan Medd. Apart from demoing a small little iOS app I have been working on (for my company Xtravirt), I bounced some ideas off of Jonathan regarding a small mini-project I have been working on to automate vSphere lab environment deployment. I got some useful advice here, especially with regard to deploying vCenter unattended (thanks Jonathan!) It was also great to meet William Lam in person and have a brief chat about the VMware MOB (which I find extremely useful for a project I am currently working on).
I was also interviewed by Steve Bruck for the vNews podcast – they were interested in chatting about vMetrics – so I managed to get a small plug in for my WordPress plugin there.
Finally the closing keynote by Scott Lowe was held, entitled “Staying Sharp and Relevant in IT”. This was an excellent session and provided some great insight, ideas and thoughts into learning new technologies or employing techniques to help study new areas for today’s IT pro.
After the event was over, Jane Rimmer from the London VMUG team was very kind to invite Darren and I to a small dinner gathering at a nearby restaurant. This was perfect for me as I wanted to avoid rush hour traffic for my drive back home (120 miles or so). We had an excellent dinner and chat with the likes of Jane Rimmer, Simon Gallagher, Alaric Davies, Hans De Leenheer, some ladies from the US VMUG team, and last but not least, Scott Lowe.
All in all the event was a success.
Just for fun, I decided to create pie/donut chart representing the number of #UKVMUGYAY hashtagged tweets vs #UKVMUGBOO (good vs bad) – note that some of the “boo” tweets did seem to be playful – i.e. not really showing dissatisfaction! This was a quick and rough calculation by searching for “ALL” tweets on each hashtag and counting them manually – I may have been a couple out here or there 🙂 This is as of tonight (18/11/2012).