vForum Online: A Mini-VMworld Available Anywhere

No hotel to book, no plane to catch, no jet lag. A full roster of virtualization sessions, expert technologist chats, and hands-on labs. All at your internet-enabled finger tips.

As long as you have an internet connected device and some time, VMware’s vForum Online events are the next-best thing to attending VMworld. Whether you had to miss VMware’s flagship conference, or wish to catch up on all the latest announcements and technologies, the vForum Online event is just the thing.

The vForum Online event is effectively a one-day online conference, and the next one’s coming April 24th!

What to Expect

The April vForum Online agenda hasn’t been released yet, but based on earlier vForum Online events it’ll likely take on a similar format to the tech conferences you’re familiar with. They typically kick off with a keynote address from notable figure in the VMware ecosystem. Pat Gelsinger, CEO of VMware, is a common presenter. Then there’s a full day’s roster of sessions and chats, while the virtual exhibition hall and hands-on labs are available on-demand.

Looking to see what’s new in vSphere and vSAN? Wanting to learn more about NSX and Workspace One? Odds are the sessions will have you covered. Often there will be customer success stories that help you understand how others have been able to successfully meet their business needs through technology.

Personally I’m hoping for some content on VMware Validated Designs and VMware Cloud Foundations. Much like HCI helped businesses consume hardware in predictable, pre-engineered building blocks, I believe VVD and VCF will do much the same from a software perspective.

Much like the offerings from vForum Online’s big sister, VMworld, there will also be chats where you can ask questions of folks who have successfully deployed solutions you’re interested in. Usually structured like a chat-room, chat participants will be able to pose their questions and designated experts will answer them in turn during the allotted time.

If you’re not yet familiar with Hands-On Labs, there are usually a handful available through the vForum Online interface for you to experience. You’ll get a full-blown provisioned environment with all the components needed to learn about a particular technology. Instructions will guide you through several practical exercises, usually provisioning or performing common operational tasks. Make sure to take a moment during the day to check them out.

Tips for Work / vForum Harmony

If you’re able to take part all day in vForum Online, that’s the ideal way to immerse yourself in its opportunities. If, like me, you’re only able to drop in on the vForum Online throughout the day based on your availability, I have a few tips.

  • Block off your calendar for the entire vForum Online, but mark it as free so that you don’t appear busy. This way you’ll be able to remind yourself when it’s running. Don’t forget to set a reminder!
  • For any of the keynotes, sessions, chats, etc. that are at a fixed time that you don’t want to miss, add an appointment notice in your calendar and mark it busy. Make sure you include enough info so that you can find the event you’re interested in quickly when you visit the vForum Online interface.
  • If you visit the virtual booth of an exhibitor you’re interested in, but you don’t have time right then to engage in a full chat, take a moment to see if the vendor has any downloadable content available. There could be things like whitepapers or videos which you can read or watch later at your convenience.
  • Pack your lunch ahead of time, and if there aren’t any scheduled items you want to attend during your lunch hour, drop in on a hands-on lab, visit the exhibitor hall, or see if there’s a general chat area to network with fellow vForum Online attendees.

See You (Virtually) There!

Like I mentioned, we don’t know what the agenda looks like yet. We do know that the next vForum Online is on April 24, 2019. So, as they say, save the date and stay tuned!

Featured image photo by Picography

Dee Abson

Dee Abson is a technical architect from Alberta, Canada. He's been working in the field of technology for over 20 years and specializes in server and virtualization infrastructure. Working with VMware products since ESX 2, he holds several VMware certifications. He is a 9x VMware vExpert. You can find him on Twitter and Mastodon.

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