Now that in person events are starting to make a come back, VMware recently announced some news regarding VMworld. VMworld is no more as it has been replaced by VMware Explore. In this post I wanted to recount my past experiences at VMworld 2018, what I got from it, and all the information you need to learn more about VMware Explore.
In my previous job, back in 2017/2018 I expressed a desire to attend VMworld as I knew it would greatly benefit me and the company. However when the time came to book it, I was told I was not getting to go on the company dime. I was naturally very, very disappointed. I happened to tell the news to the members of the Scottish VMUG and they were disappointed for me. Little did I know the amazing leaders had a plan for me…
In October 2018 I attended a VMUG meeting (blog post here) and was amazed to be awarded Coomunity Member of the year. This resulted in the VMUG paying for my trip to VMworld! What did this mean to me? Everything! I took full advantage attending lots of sessions, talking to as many people as I could, hall crawl, vendor parties, vExpert Party, talking to vendors, demos, Hackathon, and so much more. Let just say it was a very, very busy VMworld for me,
A bit of a fanboy highlight for me was getting to speak to William Lam after one of his sessions. Such a friendly helpful guy. Thanks William! I think the most valuable part for me was talking to other attendees at VMworld. As a natural introvert I find it hard to speak to people I don’t know. However each lunchtime sitting at the big tables I struck up a conversation each day with random people. Everyone was so open to chatting and discussing what they learnt. That speaks volumes for the event I feel.
One other interesting story from my time at VMworld was I met a bunch of new people from the Scottish VMUG. About a year later someone that I met at VMworld now works on my team at work. When I heard he’d applied I instantly knew he would be the guy for the job. After I talked to him lots at VMworld and knew he was a smart guy and any company would be lucky to have him.
VMware Explore 2022
So is VMware Explore just a new name for VMworld? Not according to VMware:
VMware Explore will remain familiar to previous attendees in many ways but will offer numerous new opportunities for discovery. There will also be more non-VMware-led content and speakers—fresh, distinct voices and points of view—gathered in one place like never before.
Yes it sounds like VMworld but in these times VMware are trying to make this a Hybrid event unlike VMworld which was entirely on-prem with content available later on. I won’t be able to attend VMware Explore so I am grateful they are working to make sure I can virtually attend. One other big change is VMworld traditionally it was either in the US or Europe. That is ok for most people but this year there will be additional events in Brazil, Singapore, Japan and China. I’m sure the people in those regions are very happy to get a more accessible event.
Attending virtually is great, but in person attendance is where you get the most value simply from talking to people at the event. I learnt a lot in 2018 just from chatting to people and discussing what I was working on at the time. I also see the Hands-on Labs will be there. Yes I know you can do it anytime, anywhere but in all honesty when do you find time to jump into one. VMworld is a great opportunity to make dedicated time to learn something new in a Hands-on Lab.
It’s still some time away, but already VMware have announced at the following at the US event:
- Solution Keynotes
- Breakout Sessions (900+ so far)
- Hands-on Labs
- Meet the Experts
- The Expo
- Certification Exam Center (50% discount on all exams taken)
- Various Networking opportunities such as a Welcome Reception, Meals, Hall Crawl, etc.
There are five tracks the content is based around:
- Accelerate Cloud Transformation - Modernize infrastructure, operating models and applications
- Build and Operate a Cloud Native Platform - Secure, run and manage all cloud native apps, across clouds
- Secure and Empower the Hybrid Workforce - Enable anywhere work with secure and frictionless experiences
- Connect and Secure Clouds and Apps - Automate app experiences with a comprehensive and secure network
- Expand Your Horizons - Discover new perspectives that will inform and inspire innovation
All in all it sounds like an amazing event.
Here is a collection of useful links detailing where you can learn more about VMware Explore:
- VMware Explore Landing Page
- VMware Explore US Registration (registration required)
- VMware Community Podcast Episode 600 - VMware Explore 2022
- VMware Explore Blog
- VMware Explore Twitter
Keep your eye on the various social platforms for more information as it’s released.
Some Key Dates to keep in mind:
- VMware Explore US - August 29th - September 1st
- Early Bird Pricing ends June 13th - get your ticket before that date and registration is open now
- VMworld Explore Europe Registration opens - June 28th
- US Content Catalog opens - 28th June
- VMware Explore Europe - November 7th - 10th
- VMware Explore Brazil - October 19th and 20th
- VMware Explore Singapore - November 15th and 16th
- VMware Explore Japan - 15th and 16th
- VMware Explore China - 17th and 18th
I’m already excited about VMworld and I am not even going (I’ll take a free ticket though VMware if you’re listening!). Yes it’s essentially a re-brand of VMworld, but I am looking forward to see what is new in VMware Explore. My top tip if you are attending in person - make the most of networking. Sessions can always be viewed later, but you will never replace those connections. You never know where it may lead.
As for the job that reneged on the promise of VMworld, I’m no longer there. I still owe so much to the Scottish VMUG for sending me to VMworld. Thanks guys.