Today was quite the day, as all the days have been at VMworld. The morning started off with a Women of Purpose breakfast where they had some women CIOs and CEOs sharing their career path and sharing a bit of wisdom.
One woman who is a VP at VMware said that as a single mom, she would always tell someone that she couldn’t go to a meeting or schedule something at a certain time because she had to pick her kids up. However, she said that she’s learned not to disclose the reason. “Keep it to yourself” was her advice. She said that men take time off some times in the afternoon to go see their kids games but don’t really say why they’re leaving or make a big deal out of it. Women tend to explain away or feel compelled to give a good excuse. No need, she encouraged. Just tell them you’re busy. Interesting idea. I like it.
A good chunk of my time today was spent in the labs. These labs are awesome. I just can’t get over it. After talking with a few people, they said that they would totally pay for the labs if they were put online for future use. One person even said he’d pay out of his own pocket. They’re really really good. Thanks VMware!
I worked through two: vSphere Troubleshooting and vSphere PowerCLI. I did all of the Troubleshooting lab, and it was great. Really gave me some extra places to look when having trouble with LUNs not showing up, or vmdk files that won’t start or appear to be non-functioning. If you can’t access your ESX host, check the firewall on the vCenter server. Wouldn’t have necessarily thought of that (probably something that I should have though!).
I did about 30 minutes of the PowerCLI lab and got 10 pages in. I wasn’t doing so well on that one. I haven’t done any powershell, so I was slowly making my way through it. It was helpful. I wish I could have finished it, but it would have taken me a long time. I needed to be somewhere at 11:30, and the line was really long to get in to the labs, which ate up a good chunk of my time. However, I do have a large poster with PowerCLI commands (side note: some guy asked what I had and I told him what it was and his reply was, wow, that’s kinda nerdy, to which I replied, well, I’m a SysAdmin. He thought that was cool, because he probably thought I wasn’t technical. It’s an interesting response when people find out you’re a techie girl). The poster will go up in my cube, and I will practice until it’s perfect! Good goal. I at least have a small framework to go from now.
I was at the Compellent booth for awhile and did the SANchat, which is a twitter gathering where people can talk about different topics on twitter for an hour. This month we discussed VMworld (no surprise there!). We got a few people talking about different topics such as their favorite sessions, which vendor had the best swag, if people would pay for lab access after the conference, and other things. It was an interesting experience. I’d definitely say it wasn’t my favorite thing that I’ve done all week, but it was something different. There were a few of us sitting around in the booth and so we’d tweet a question and someone (most of the time who was sitting right next to me) would reply, and I’d look up and say “Really?” or “That’s cool!”. It created a conversation starter for those of us sitting in the booth, but unfortunately there wasn’t a lot of interaction otherwise. I was hoping more people would participate. They were probably all in sessions, in the Expo area, or unable to get on the spotty wireless.
It was fun because I was staked out in the booth, so I told my “twitter friends” to come by and meet me there. The “virtual friendship” is really an interesting thing. Finally met another Compellent customer who I was trying to meet up with in May at the C-drive conference, which was great. Also, was able to meet a friend who I started following on twitter and found out he actually works at Fuller Seminary! How cool. Didn’t realize he was in LA, Linux admin, and at a seminary. Also met up with another new friend who saw an email of mine to a list serve and we realized we had a common friend. It was fun to meet up with him, because he works for Winslow Technology Group, which is our vendor partner for our Compellent solution. They’re a great company and all of the people I have met from WTG are the nicest people! Fun stuff to finally meet these virtual friends of mine. Weird too.
Went to a wonderful restaurant for dinner with Compellent. The food was great. Super fancy. I had a pot de creme for dessert. How do you like that?! (Christie, you would have loved the place!) There were some industry analysts there, as well as fellow customers, and the Compellent Execs. Great time talking with the others who were there. It really was a good networking time, and fun to get to know some more people. An industry analyst from Gartner who was at dinner with us (I don’t remember his name, but I think he was someone relatively well known) said that he wanted to come see my class that I’m teaching. I told him he was welcome to come! It’d be cool if he wanted to be a guest speaker as welll!
Speaking of networking, I only have 8 business cards left. I’d say that’s pretty good! I’ve been passing them out to those who I meet over time. I had a scare as I thought I lost my case of cards I’ve collected this week. Ahh! All that hard work would have been lost! Thankfully I found them in a pocket of my bag. I always write notes about the person on the back of the card so I can remember who they are and where I met them. It’s a handy trick that I’ve picked up.
Just caught the end of the VMworld party, which featured INXS (pronounced In Excess). The place was hopping. They had food and lots of drinks. People said they ran out of beer so they were all headed to the bars, but I was headed back to my hotel to sleep. They had a photo booth, large balls that you could go inside and roll around in, a trampoline that you could strap into and flip around on, and other fun picture opportunities. It seemed pretty good. A little bummed I missed it, but it was fine just seeing the end of it.
That’s about it! I’m sad that the trip is almost over. Heading back to LA to finish up the week (and hopefully get my the house-buying process finished up!)