This year marked the 10th anniversary of VMworld Europe, so quite a milestone for VMware. It’s partially somewhat of a personal milestone, too, in that this is my 4th year attending VMworld on behalf of Servium.

The conference took place a month early this year – an interesting decision, considering it clashed on the Monday (Partner Day) with the National Day of Catalonia in Spain. The National Day is a festival that commemorates the anniversary of the Bourbon forces’ recapture of Barcelona, which occurred on September 11, 1714. So on that particular Monday, the whole city of Barcelona was in lockdown as there were thousands upon thousands of locals and tourists gathered in the city centre to celebrate.

According to VMware, there was a record-breaking number of attendees this year. Whether or not that had a direct correlation with the festival, I can’t say for certain, but I would estimate that there were in excess of 10,000 people!

As usual, there was a whole lot going on at VMworld.

The big theme this year was around security, with a considerable focus on VMware’s Network Virtualisation solution – NSX. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) understandably came up in a number of presentations and actually underpinned a significant number of these sessions. Given the fact that May 2018 is fast approaching, this didn’t come as a great surprise.

A few of the other main themes shaping the conference were that of the Software Defined Data Centre (SDDC), Software Defined Networking (SDN) and hyperconverged storage – all hot topics.

The Vendor Village this year had headline sponsors such as Dell EMC, HP and Amazon Web Services (AWS), along with some more niche and emerging vendors such as Pure Storage, Pivot3 and Arista Networks.

The Keynote

VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger took the stage for the Keynote. He opened the conference with details on key announcements – such as their new partnership with IBM in Europe – before discussing the future of technology and how VMware fits into the equation. Raising the topic of education and the role of technology within this, he also noted that the current foundation for learning still circles back to the three “R’s” – reading, writing and arithmetic – yet he suggests this will eventually shift to reading, writing, coding and arithmetic over time. An interesting view!

He later talked about the future of VMware as a whole, how their current cloud strategy fits into their company vision, and how open source technology can be best used alongside VMware technologies.

Following the General Sessions, there were multiple Showcase Keynotes that covered a wide range of increasingly popular trends, including taking a software-defined approach to modernising the datacentre, along with the importance of integrating security at every level of the infrastructure.

During our time outside of the conference, we had the additional pleasure of hosting an exclusive customer dinner at the excellent Firebug Bistro. This was well received and a really great way to finish off a busy few days in Barcelona.

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Steve Dawes is Servium’s Services Director. If you’d like to learn more about the changes, innovations and trends discussed at VMworld, please speak to your Account Manager at Servium or contact us.

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