Wow, how to sum it all up. Definitely, VMworld was fun, and VMware puts on a nice conference. I would have to say, however, that I was a little disappointed.
The keynotes didn’t show anything new? Everything I saw there was really everything I saw at VMworld Europe (in fact it was pretty much the same stuff I saw at last year’s VMworld), and to be honest, I think they presented it better at VMworld Europe. I wasn’t the only one to think so (Mike Laverick at rtfm-ed.co.uk):
If you happened to stay until the very end, you got a few seconds on SpringSource, but even that seemed not put together very well.
They did finish a big release cycle, and probably the next major release is a few years off, so they may not have the roadmap down right now, perhaps that is what it was.
There were a couple of sessions that I liked, but mostly, those were flat as well. The VMware Head to Head vs. Microsoft and Citrix was interesting, but obviously they are going to only show their good side there and put us in the most unfavorable light that they can.
The part I liked the best was the Solutions Exchange. Being the “little guy” at the conference, there was a definite feeling of excitement. It felt very similar to when I first started with VMware and was at the LinuxWorld conference. There was a feeling in the Microsoft Booth and with the customers and partners that I talked with where they wanted to work with us. As I was walking around the booths, or tweeting away, I was contacted by many different partners, and there was this energy about it. From DataCore and their help with my 3 Laptop Demo (which I didn’t show at the show), to Pano Logic to Citrix, to all of the partners at the show. They all seemed to want to work with us.
Everyone was really upbeat about Microsoft’s advances, and when we talked with customers, more and more “light bulbs” went off. I can really do all of that? It costs only that much? WOW!
It was really good seeing all of my old friends from VMware (and some from other companies), and though there were some awkward silences (when conversation switched to business), it was the best part of the whole show.
It is a two horse race now, and we are coming in strong. This year is going to be exciting, and I can’t wait.