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RoundTower Blog

A Citrix Engineer at VMworld 2017


For many years, I have had several minor roles in managing VMware environments, but have never had the opportunity to attend formal training or VMworld. Most of my expertise comes from Citrix technologies, but as most of you can imagine, the underlying hypervisor is usually VMware. The opportunity to go to VMworld this year was a treat. To get the most out of the week, I decided to register for a track which I am most familiar with: End User Computing.

Opening Keynote

The opening keynote started impressively with a scored virtual reality element which introduced the CEO of VMware, Patrick Gelsinger. 

Several aspects of the keynote which stuck out to me. When key leaders of different organizations were introduced on stage, they discussed how VMware allowed them to succeed. Each of the leaders spoke about transformation and how that status quo was no longer a viable way to run the organization. It was informative to hear how a financial institution changed their thought process to one where they consider themselves an IT organization which provides financial solutions. 

The second item which caught my attention was the amount of time and effort they spent discussing AI (artificial intelligence). The conversation continued even moreso when Michael Dell was introduced on stage to converse with Mr. Gelsinger. Unfortunately, because of my prior focus, I was not able to entertain the idea of diving further into what they were expecting out of AI.

End User Computing

While attending several breakout sessions regarding End User Computing, I was able obtain a great deal of information regarding VMware’s vision for End User Computing. Most demonstrations provided a seamless integration of App Layering, Profile Management, and Device Management – all while maintaining rapid deployment. It was all quite impressive, but I am often skeptical when it comes to flashy demonstrations. Throughout the week, I determined that in order to obtain all of those features, every component of VMware’s product suite needed to be implemented. It also required the customer to purchase the Horizon Enterprise Entitlement. The requirements seemed to be:

  • Device Management à requires AirWatch
  • App Layering à requires ThinApp
  • Profile Management à requires Identity Manager and User Environment Manager
  • Application delivery à requires AppVolumes
  • Image Management à requires Mirage
  • …And the underlying technologies required are VMware vSphere and Horizon 


Overall, the conference was a huge success. I interacted with many tech savvy VMware engineers while walking through booths, halls, and during lunches. I believe the knowledge which can be gained through an event like this is worth the investment. For me, I gained more insight into the entire product suite which VMware offers, as well as what I need to focus on if I want to become a true End User Computing Architect. 

Feel free to contact me on Twitter (@JRRDoesTech) if you would like to discuss any of these topics further.

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