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Blogging now at vzare.com

Today onwards I chose to move VCP5.WordPress.com on my own domain vZare.com. Primary reason to change this is to change the theme of the blog. I’m really delighted my blog is referred for VCP study material and it is the only reason I have secured vExpert title even this year. I’m really thankful to all the readers, as of today blog hits over 1,00,000 (100 lakhs). I want to continue the similar contribution in other Virtualization related areas but at much broader level and more focus towards other products which will really help people do thing FASTER. It is completely new beginning for me and for me it is moving up the stack.

Courtesy : http://blogs.name.com

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VCP or Hyper-V Certification

How I became VCP in first place

It is never ending question I get from my followers and my colleagues. So let me put my thoughts on this. Before I do that here is the history on How I became VCP in first place. Back in 2006 my organization, one fine day asked me to attend VCP training provided by VMware. I had no idea what VMware was and I never used any of their product. But vMotion made me felt this product will make significant difference to Infrastructure space across the world.

Out of all the colleagues who attended the VCP training, none was so much passionate about doing VCP as I was. I always want to be different and ahead of time. I thought VCP certification could give me that extra edge. I started preparing for the VCP certification and started reading all product documentations. This process brought me very close to the VMware products. I started learning more about VMware products using various blogs. After watching these blogs I realized I can also blog my experience and I started blogging on VCP3 (http://vmzare.wordpress.com/). It was very interesting to know some unknown facts of VMware products through their documents and blogs. I tried to used the same knowledge within organization. Somewhere I failed and somewhere I was simply ignored. But this never stopped my passion to achieve something different. My journey still continues and I’m now quite familiar with vSphere 4.x and vSphere 5.x and SRM, vShield Product suite and vCloud director. In 2007 I achieved VCP certification. But focus was to do something different.

So now main question?

Shall I do VCP or Hyper-V Certification?

Please ask below questions to yourself

1. “Can you do something different by achieving VCP/Hyper-V Certification”

2. “Can you make difference to your customer/clients”

3. “What are your plan to utilize or leverage this certification?” I hate this answer “I’m doing this just to fill my personal development plan to meet my organization’s performance evaluation criteria” I see it is waste of time and money for both

4. Is your organization utilizing any of the products. Gaining hands-on experience is extremely essential to achieve advance certifications. So think of future. Once Hypervisor is in place, same hypervisor continues to be strategic unless organization is very big and have strong infrastructure team in place.

 

My Personal Choice

First gets hands-on hypervisor of your choice. Then start learning other hypervisor’s. Hypervisor’s are more or less similar in operation and slightly differ in architecture. Once you know the difference between them, learning become fast and interesting as well. Future is of multi-hypervisor. It is expected that team members know more than one hypervisor as mentioned over here. It will give you edge in current market. I prefer VMware vSphere simply because of strong online community and ease with which you can find help when needed. I’m bit partial here as I’m more focused on vmware product portfolio and know the entire site map of VMware.com. This could be also true for any Microsoft’s expert person.

Do what you like the most, be it Hyper-V, VMware or any other hypervisor. Then keep learning everything about the hypervisor you like and try to apply that learning to solve customer problems or add value to the customer.  Never ever forget –> You will need minimum 6 months to completely understand any hypervisor. You can attend 5 day VCP training course and pass using other means in a month but this will never give you edge over hypervisor. Invest your time and reap the results.

Finally follow “3-Idiots Movie Moral” 

Kamyab Nahi Kabil Hone Ke Liye Padho. Kamyabi Jhak Maarke Pichhe Ayegi

a.k.a Pursue excellence, and success will follow

Multi-HyperVisor: Future & it’s Impact

This post is very different that I have even posted. Not sure If I will continue such musing. Both this is one of those thoughts kept lingering in my mind for a while.

By Multi-Hypervisor environment I meant using more than Hypervisor.

1. vSphere ESXi

2. Hyper-V

3. RHEV/XEN (Not sure if this is the name)

Disclaimer: I know only one Hypervisor i.e. VMware’s vSphere ESXi

 

First why Multiple Hypervisor’s

1. Single Vendor/All Eggs in one Basket

Historically CIO’s never want to dependent on Single Vendor. This is goes back to same strategy used in olden days for hardware vendor. Big Enterprises will always have mix of hardware Vendor and Strategy e.g. High End systems from HP and Mid and Low End system from IBM & Dell(or other way round). In short use multiple server vendors and remove any possibilities of any vendor to implicitly rule organization’s hardware strategy.

2. License, Support and Ecosystems

Licensing cost will be one of the factor but not the only factor while deciding one Hypervisor or the other. I feel the major influence will be the service which are sold to the internal client or how the charge back model is gets impacted by the overall cost. I think Hyper-V can definitely provide Silver, Bronze level service or uptime and vSphere can do that right from top (Platinum) to bottom (Bronze). But then will Silver level service cost same on vSphere and Hyper-V. I don’t know the figures but we know cost differs by significant margins. CIO’s must direct Infrastructure architects to develop multiple hypervisor strategy and service models

Support and Ecosystem becomes extremely critical in ever becoming complex environment. Ecosystem I meant your configuration and monitoring software. Both Vendors are building up capability to support multi hypervisor environment. For me it is always looks like Indian marrying a Indian Born in UK. Bottom line –> There will be always a case where Vendor A will point to Hypervisor-B and Vendor B will point to Hypervisor A when the problem arises in troubleshooting cross vendor hypervisor software. I would always recommend to use software’s of the respective vendor to management, monitor and configure the ecosystem.

Impact of Multiple Hypervisor’s

1. Evolving 3rd Party Software

3rd Party Software vendor’s started developing product to support multi-Hypervisor environment. I know at least Veeam is doing it. And there might be many but I see major change happening very soon. Right now let’s say we have Gold, Platinum VMs in vSphere ESXi and Silver, Bronze are in Hyper-V, there will be time when customer wants to upgrade to Gold or Platinum service or in simple words customer felt vSphere will offer better stability so they want to move to vSphere i.e. at lower level it is VHD to VMDK conversion. No…not offline but online conversion. If there is Storage vmotion why can’t be vmotion irrespective of hypervisor. After all  now we aim everything to be defined by the Software. I have always believed it is not the need that pushes to innovate but the innovation drives the need. e.g. Apple iPhone. World was happy in pre-iPhone world but now everyone wants iPhone and every other phone started copying iPhone interface.

So I see this segment will emerge. Platspin was number 1 vendor when it came to P2V and capacity planning for P2V, I see similar kind of software will evolve where in online conversion happens from VHD to VMDK or vMotion/Live Migration happens over different Hypervisor. CIO’s will always love such flexibilities.

2. Complexities and System Administrators

Biggest impact Multiple hypervisor will have is on Operations team. Supporting multi-hypervisor needs training and of course understanding the subtle differences.  Different maintenance cycle and upgrade procedures and that too without impacting services will need detailed strategy and planning. Even with single hypervisor I see operations team (network, Storage and OS) acting independently in their own Island of excellence (Is it). If these team don’t talk frequently there is always a chance for major outage. I think operation team must be renamed a datacenter operations team and whole team becomes responsible for virtual datacenter. If Network is down Hypervisor is down, so are the services and if you have FCoE even Storage then. If they don’t work closely such outage window can become very long. Entire team ,ust understand the impact of services when two ports on different switch goes down. This has potential to bring 50-100 services down and business loss.