Friday, June 18, 2010

VCP at last, and virtualization in Industry

I had the opportunity to attend VMWare's Fast Track course last December. It was a good class. The info came fast and furious! After nearly allowing my test voucher to expire, I buckled down and hit the books.On Wednesday I passed the test, so now I'm officially a VMWare Certified Professional!

Virtualization has been an interest of mine for awhile. I live by VMWare Workstation on my desktop and await the day when I get a laptop that's powerful enough to support my too-many VMs at once habit. For the Industrial Integrator/programmer/professional, Virtualization makes too much sense! Check it out if you haven't already! It readily solves problems that Industrial Software vendors have created (you need this version of Windows without a patch, can't run with competing software, older programming tools for some customers, etc, etc). Using multiple Virtual Machines, you can have exactly the right tool for whatever task at hand - without ever needing to make any changes. You get additional benefits of features like "snapshots" and "cloning". The only real issue is that none of the vendors have decided to support PCMCIA/PC Cards, so you'll have to use serial or USB connectors. This should matter less and less as time goes on.

On the server side (which is what the VCP is all about), VMWare may or may not make sense for your Industrial applications. Don't get me wrong - ESX and ESXi are awesome packages, but if you don't have a competent IT department - you're adding another layer of complexity for what might benefit you. For those larger companies that provide a lot of server based services - you're probably already using a virtualized environment. It just doesn't make sense not to.