Thought about attending virtualization user groups? Here's a virtual tour of some of my recent positive experiences.

Posted by Paul Braren on Apr 6 2013 (updated on May 2 2013) in
  • ESXi
  • Hyper-V
  • Presentations
  • UserGroup
  • When working at an IBM customer center from 1995-2005, I spent a lot of evenings helping host local user groups, something I thoroughly enjoyed. If you've been to this site before, you already know I like getting out, such as attending the Hyper-V Loadfest. The value I get out of these events is frankly not as much about what I can learn, but instead about the folks I meet, in person. It's not just the presenters, it's the lunch with complete strangers, other IT workers like me, where we discuss common interests and work stories, and share business cards. Yes, that's old school. You know, the other kind of "networking," meeting with folks like Microsoft's

     - Microsoft

    who has since allowed me some guest-blogging opportunities, such as my recent Windows Task Manager auto-started as an effective CPU monitor in your system tray.

    Here in central Connecticut, it's just a 2 hour drive to either Boston or New York, so I have plenty of choices.

    Now that I work from home more and no longer fly around as much, I've been able to start TinkerTry in 2011, and enjoy the opportunity to present to some local user groups. One such example was the all-day Virtualization Deep Dive Day 2012, with about 75 folks attending my presentation, where I also got to meet (again) with fellow presenter

     - Penton Media


    and have a bit of fun talking about working from home, and about his guest podcasting experience with my friends at The Home Server Show.

    This year, back on January 17 2013, I made the drive up to Gillette Stadium, along with 1500 fellow New Englanders, to the VTUG Winter Warmer. I finally managed to meet presenter/blogger:

     - VMware


    I also had the opportunity to see Chris field a question about making ESX Servers run better, seen here in this short video I took (that I was given permission to publish by the dedicated event coordinator himself):

    On March 14th 2013, I had the chance to head on over to Microsoft's building in Cambridge MA, for Virtualization Deep Dive Day 2013, where I thoroughly enjoyed the live demos provided by:

     - Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center

    Rob's dedication was evident when speaking to him over lunch break. I'm so glad he made the super early, long-drive to Cambridge MA to make his presentation:

    Virtualization Deep Dive Day 2013 Presentation Sample Powershell Scripts
    Platform: Windows Server 2012 (Powershell 3.0)
    Features Needed: Hyper-V, Failover Cluster

    and note that Dan Stolts has now featured Rob on his TechNet Radio broadcasts as well:

    Hyper-V LIVE! TechNet Radio, ITProGuru vs. And Virtualization Series Experts #VirtExperts brings you Hyper-V LIVE (Part 1 of 2)
    Hyper-V LIVE! TechNet Radio, ITProGuru vs. And Virtualization Series Experts #VirtExperts brings you Hyper-V LIVE (Part 2 of 2)

    Finally, back on March 28th, I got to meet somebody who lives just miles away, and is a home virtualization lab enthusiast, how cool is that! That somebody is:

    Matthew delivered a live demonstration on his HP-based system, really putting on a good showing of just how far you can take a home lab, with some creative networking and VMware hypervisor nesting. A very different philosophy and approach than my vZilla build. That's a good thing. Linked clones. Performance. SSDs. Check it out.


    Last Updated By: Matthew Kozloski on Mar 30, 2013
    vSphere 5.1 DIY presentation - how to successfully run/nest vSphere on vSphere.
    For VMUG members, login and download here:

    PPTX Link:
    PDF Link:

    Even if you're not a VMUG member, I've obtained permission to allow you to download it right here:

    PDF: 3-DIY-Lab
    PPTX: 3-DIY-Lab


    The events are generally free or under $50, and you tend to get a free lunch. So get out there, and if you live in my area, you know where I'll be! Here's some of what's coming up next, hoping to be able to attend some of these:


    May 02 2013 Update:
    Turns out I've been given a chance to present at 2 of these conferences, this month!  See me on the agenda, links below:

    Connecticut VMUG User Conference in Hartford CT on May 14 2013:

    BSidesBOS on May 18 2013 in Boston, MA on May 18 2013: