Microsoft Ignite 2018–Azure Keynote

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Speakers: Scott Guthrie, Julia White, and probably a cast of others.

Julia White

She repeats some stuff we’ve already heard.

Scott Guthrie

The man in charge of Azure and Windows Server comes out. You can use entry level, burstable machines. There are big machines for high end, and hardware-enhanced machines.

Storage

New disk option, Ultra SSD, delivers twice the performance of the next competitor, and scales up to 64,000 and 160,000 IOPS with sub-millisecond latency.

4500 peering locations and 10,000,000+ miles of fibre networking in the Microsoft WAN. ExpressRoute offering speeds up to 100 Gbps, which is industry leading. Front Door is a new service to give you a secure global entry point for globally distributed apps. It uses Azure’s intelligent routing and offers CDN. Azure WAN and Azure Firewall are also GA.

Azure Data Box, the secure ruggedized disk box is GA and has some new options. Heavy expands from the normal 100 TB to 1 PB capacity. Edge is a new category of appliance to use data locally with it being stored in the cloud. It has offline capabilities.

There is purpose-build hardware in Azure for NetApp, Cray, and SAP. 24 TB RAM bare-metal machines for SAP. 12 TB RAM VMs coming soon.

Windows Server 2019

Windows Server 2019 is announced. Bits coming in October. Native hybrid cloud features. New security enhancements including Defender Threat Protection. Better container images and app compat.Lower cost storage with Storage Spaces Direct.

Windows Virtual Desktop

Windows 10 multi-user support for this new MS hosted Windows 10 solution. It appears to be O365 licensed with Azure VM consumption. RI can be applied for discounts. In the end, it’s just RDS.

Azure Stack

On-prem Azure, with the usual explanations. Available in 92 countries via the 5 partners. Video and demo of a mini- ruggedized Azure Stack kit from Dell for disaster relief and similar touch-environment scenarios. Uses drones as recon devices with edge AI. Next up, an engineer with a HoloLens goes “on site”. A remote expert can see what she can see and help her do the work. It ties in with Dynamics to find and recommend an expert.

Linux

RedHat is one of their “deepest partners”. A joint OpenShift on Azure is coming to Azure Stack.

Security + Management

Azure Security Center is the central dashboard for managing security in Azure and in hybrid. A new Security Score is being shared through ASC to measure your deployments.

Blueprints are being announced. It’s a combination of ARM template, resource group, RBAC, and Policy in one “template” that you associate with a management group.

Julia White came back out with a Walmart guy to do chat show time. Yawn.

Azure Migrate

It now supports Hyper-V.

Azure Learn

Free step-by-step tutorials. Hands-on learning and coding environments. Knowledge checks and achievements.

Serverless Based Computing

Built in HA, security, parching by MS.

Jeff Hollan comes out to do a demo of app migration/modernization. In Visual Studio, he clicks a menu to add Docker support for an existing set of code. He can choose Windows or Azure. VS builds a docker container to run the application, and runs it on his PC to live debug it. He set a break point and while the container is running, he can step through the code in VS. Can be published to K8s from VS too. A dashboard that is built from 10s of thousands of data sources requires batch jobs. To make it live built, he’s going to use Functions v2.0 GA today in Azure. It offers twice the performance of Functions v1.0.  As serverless, it can scale to the 10s of thousands of instances that happen every second.

GitHub

Largest developer community in the world. 28 million unique developers and 85 million code repositories. Will be allowed to stay open and independent.

Azure DevOps

Next gen VSTS. Boards, Pipelines, Test Plans, Artifacts, Lab Services, and Repos – all in Azure.

Data & AI

SQL Server 2019 public preview available. Leverage hardware acceleration. Data classification and labelling, e.g. GDPR. Data masking and hardware encryption.

Azure SQL Managed Instances GA.

Cosmos DB is one of the fastest growing services in Azure. I am not surprised – the scale and HA are fantastic. All the APIx are GA. Multi-master write support (now GA) with anti-entropy makes it easier to built widely dispersed planet-scale apps. Reserved Capacity will reduce costs by up to 65%. A new lower cost entry option for smaller databases is announced.

Some new analytic service called Azure Data Explorer for exploration, and querying structured and unstructured data. Can query live data like log telemetry. Scale from GBs to PBs.

My Microsoft Ignite Strategy

Microsoft Ignite is running from Monday 24th until Friday 28th in Orlando, Florida, next week. Here’s how I plan to consume from this conference.

Why Am I Attending?

There are two answers to this question, depending on what you mean by the question.

Why would I care to consume content from Ignite? That’s simple – Ignite is a cornerstone event in the Microsoft calendar for techies. If you work with business software from Microsoft, then this is when the big stuff gets announced, and this is the best opportunity to learn from the product groups. Even as an MVP, I have a unique opportunity to interact and learn from product groups, but they focus a huge amount of effort on this particular week. The breadth of content is huge – over 1000 sessions covering almost every aspect of enterprise software from Microsoft. In this era of constant change, it’s foolish not to try to keep up. The real question should be – why would I not want to learn at Ignite?

As for the second interpretation of the question: why attend Ignite when every session will be live streamed and available to download within 48 hours? The realities of life are that if I’m around at the office, or even working from home, the phone will ring, the email will ping, and I won’t get a chance to focus on the content. I have a young family, and at night, they come first. Attending the conference gives me a chance to focus. It’s a few days away, but the value carries over for at least the next year, and beyond.

Note Taking

I always take lots of notes at Ignite – long-time readers of my blog know this because my notes are posts on this site. I open Live Writer and start typing as the speakers are talking. You’d be amazed how often I end up googling my own articles!

If you’re not a blogger, then I’d recommend opening OneNote and taking notes for each session. If work sent you, consider sharing the notebook with your colleagues. If you’re part of a team that is attending, then cerate a shared notebook, split up and attend different sessions – you’ll exponentially grow the organisational learning and value from the conference.

Sessions

I don’t get any real value from the opening keynote. It’s all too airy-fairy and marketing speak for the general news media. For me, the meat starts immediately after the opening keynote. For the last few years, there have been “breakout keynotes” straight after the Satya Nadella session. That’s when the likes of Jeff Woolsey (Windows Server) and Scott Guthrie (Azure) flood us with news and features. As with the last few years, I will be attending lots of Azure sessions. And if it’s like last year, almost every session will have additional announcements. There’s no “how to” learning here, it’s more of a “what’s possible” learning experience – I can figure out the “how to” at home once I know what to look for. To be honest, “how to” learning doesn’t work when there’s only 60-75 minutes and you cannot do hands-on.

I typically only attend the 75 minute breakout sessions. Scattered about the hallways and expo hall are the theatre sessions, which are where most of the non-Microsoft speakers are talking. These are typically 10 minute sessions. There’s some value here, but the nuggets are so small, and the timing doesn’t work for me – this is the sort of thing I can get from a blog post or a YouTube/Channel 9 video. But that’s not true for everyone – some of the theatre sessions had massive crowds last year – bigger than many of the breakouts.

Hands-On Labs

My calendar is filled out with breakout sessions, but I often change my planning based on my gut feel for what’s being presented. Sometimes a track is dull, sometimes the same speakers are doing the same content 3-4 times but with different session titles, sometimes I hear of something exciting that I didn’t expect, and sometimes I hear about a great session that filled out but is being repeated.

When I first attended TechEd Europe, one of the best learning experiences I had was in the hands-on labs (HOLs). This gives you a chance to try things out in a sandbox environment. I haven’t done this in years, but I could be tempted to try out some AI, data, or Kubernetes labs if there are any.

Social

I’ve got friends in this business that I only ever see at conferences. MVP Kevin Greene only lives 20-30 minutes from our house but I see him a handful of times per year – we have pretty full family/work lives. I enjoy meeting up with Kev, Damian Flynn, ex-MVP and now Azure CAT John McCabe, and a bunch of other MVP and Microsoft friends that I’ve met over the years, and even some folks that I know over social media. There’s plenty of opportunity to be social at Ignite. Tuesday is party night (watch out for invitations), but most evenings Microsoft has a “mini-party” in the expo hall – which is also a great place to learn. And of course, there’s the conference closing party on Thursday night in Universal – the Hogwarts ride is pretty cool, Spiderman is fun, and Hulk looks damned scary (it would make me puke but my eldest daughter did it 4 times in a row) – Rip Ride Rocket looks worse!

Say “Hi!”

I will be easy to identify. I’ll be wearing a Cloud Mechanix T-Shirt.

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Be sure to say “hi”; I don’t bite … often Open-mouthed smile

Cloud Mechanix – “Starting Azure Infrastructure” Training Coming To Frankfurt, Germany

I have great news. Today I got confirmation that our venue for the next Cloud Mechanix class has been confirmed. So on December 3-4, I will be teaching my Cloud Mechanix “Starting Azure Infrastructure” class in Frankfurt, Germany. Registration Link.

Buy Ticket

About The Event

This HANDS-ON theory + practical course is intended for IT professionals and developers that wish to start working with or improve their knowledge of Azure virtual machines. The course starts at the very beginning, explaining what Azure is (and isn’t), administrative concepts, and then works through the fundamentals of virtual machines before looking at more advanced topics such as security, high availability, storage engineering, backup, disaster recovery, management/alerting, and automation.

Aidan has been teaching and assisting Microsoft partners in Ireland about Microsoft Azure since 2014. Over this time he has learned what customers are doing in Azure, and how they best get results. Combined with his own learning, and membership of the Microsoft Valuable Professional (MVP) program for Microsoft Azure, Aidan has a great deal of knowledge to share.

We deliberately keep the class small (maximum of 20) to allow for a more intimate environment where attendees can feel free to interact and ask questions.

Agenda

This course spans two days, running on December 3-4, 2018. The agenda is below.

Day 1 (09:30 – 17:00):

  • Introducing Azure
  • Tenants & subscriptions
  • Azure administration
  • Admin tools
  • Intro to IaaS
  • Storage
  • Networking basics

Day 2 (09:30 – 17:00):

  • Virtual machines
  • Advanced networking
  • Backup
  • Disaster recovery
  • JSON
  • Diagnostics
  • Monitoring & alerting
  • Security Center

The Venue

The location is the Novotel Frankfurt City. This hotel:

  • Has very fast Wi-Fi – an essential requirement for hands-on cloud training!
  • Reasonably priced accommodation.
  • Has car parking – which we are paying for.
  • Is near the Messe (conference centre) and is beside the Kuhwaldstraße tram station and the Frankfurt Main West train station and S-Bahn.
  • Is just a 25 minute walk or 5 minutes taxi from the Hauptbahnhof (central train station).
  • It was only 15-20 minutes by taxi to/from Frankfurt Airport when we visited the hotel to scout the location.

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Costs

The regular cost for this course is €999 per person. If you are registering more than one person, then the regular price will be €849 per person. A limited number of early bird ticks are on sale for €659 each.

You can pay for for the course by credit card (handled securely by Stripe) or PayPal on the official event site. You can also pay by invoice/bank transfer by emailing contact@cloudmechanix.com. Payment must be received within 21 days of registration – please allow 14 days for an international (to Ireland) bank transfer. We require the following information for invoice & bank transfer payment:

  • The name and contact details (email and phone) for the person attending the course.
  • Name & address of the company paying the course fee.
  • A purchase Order (PO) number, if your company require this for services & purchases.

The cost includes tea/coffee and lunch. Please inform us in advance if you have any dietary requirements.

Note: Cloud Mechanix is a registered education-only company in the Republic of Ireland and does not charge for or pay for VAT/sales tax.

See the event page for Terms and Conditions.

Buy Ticket

Adding Address Spaces To An Azure Virtual Network

Have you ever run out of addresses in an Azure virtual network? Have you ever needed to add a different scope or address space to an existing Azure virtual network? If so, this post is for you.

Quite honestly, I did not know that this was possible until recently – it’s a setting in an Azure virtual network that I have never used or even looked at:

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When you create a virtual network, you give it an address space. Typically that will be a 10.x.x.x range because that’s what the Azure Portal steers you towards and if offers a lot of address space to carve up. In the above virtual network, I created a virtual network with an address space of 192.168.1.0/24, one that should be very familiar to you. And the blades for setting up the virtual network created a single subnet consuming all of that space. What if I wanted to add another subnet? I used to think that it wasn’t possible, but I was wrong.

You can click Address Space in the Settings of the virtual network and add extra address spaces. In the above, I’ve added 10.0.0.0/16 and 172.16.0.0/16 (extreme but vivid examples) to my subnet. If that was an on-premises network, based on VLANs and routing, then life would get complicated. But this is software defined networking. These addresses are more for our comfort than for the “machine” that runs the network. In the end, NVGRE which powers the Azure network, is copying packets from a source NIC to destination NIC and is abstracts the underlying physical complexity through encapsulation (dig up Damian Flynn’s old NVGRE presentations on VMM logical software defined networks). In short … you add these address spaces, then create subnets and the subnets will route automatically across those spaces.

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If you go into subnets, you now can create subnets within the address spaces of the virtual network and they just route.

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To prove this simplicity, I deployed a VM in 192.168.1.0/24 and another in 172.16.1.0/24. I modified Windows Firewall to allow ICMP in (ping) and then ran some ping and tracert tests between the two machines in different address spaces. In a normal VLAN world, the results would illustrate the underlying complexity. In Azure’s software defined network, these are just 2 subnets in the same virtual network.

Pretty cool, right?

Physical Disks are Missing in Disk Management

In this post, I’ll explain how I fixed a situation where most of my Storage Spaces JBOD disks were missing in Disk Management and Get-PhysicalDisk showed their OperationalStatus as being stuck on “Starting”.

I’ve had some interesting hardware/software issues with an old lab at work. All of the hardware is quite old now, but I’ve been trying to use it in what I’ll call semi-production. The WS2016 Hyper-V cluster hardware consists of a pair of Dell R420 hosts and an old DataON 6 Gbps SAS Storage Spaces JBOD.

Most of the disks disappeared in Disk Management and thus couldn’t be added to a new Storage Spaces pool. I checked Device Manager and they were listed. I removed the devices and rebooted but the disks didn’t appear in Disk Management. I then ran Get-PhysicalDisk and this came up:

image

As you can see, the disks were there, but their OperationalStatus was hung on “Starting” and their HealthStatus was “Unknown”. If this was a single disk, I could imagine that it had failed. However, this was nearly every disk in the JBOD and spanned HDD and SSD. Something else was up – probably Windows Server 2016 or some firmware had threw a wobbly and wasn’t wrapping up some task.

The solution was to run Reset-PhysicalDisk. The example on docs.microsoft.com was incorrect, but adding a foreach loop fixed things:

$phydisk = (Get-Physicaldisk | Where-Object -FilterScript {$_.HealthStatus -Eq “Unknown”})

foreach ($item in $phydisk)
{
Reset-PhysicalDisk -FriendlyName $item.FriendlyName
}

A few seconds later, things looked a lot better:

image

I was then able to create the new pool and virtual disks (witness + CSVs) in Failover Cluster Manager.

(SOLUTION) Azure File Sync–Tiering & Synchronisation Won’t Work

I recently had a problem where I could not get Azure File Sync (AFS) to work correctly for me. The two issues I had were:

  • I could not synchronise a share to a new file server (new office or disaster recovery) when I set the new server endpoint to be tiered.
  • When I enabled tiering to an existing server endpoint, the cloud tiering never occurred.

I ran FileSyncErrorsReport.ps1 from the sync agent installation folder. The error summary was:

0x80c80203 – There was a problem transferring a file but sync will try again later

Each file in the share had an additional message of:

0x80c80203 There was a problem transferring a file but sync will try again later.

Both problems seemed to indicate that there was an issue with tiering. I suspected that an old bug from the preview v2.3 sync agent had returned – I was wrong because it was something different. I decided to disable tiering on a new server endpoint that wasn’t synchronising – and the folder started to synchronise.

When this sort of thing happens in AFS, you suspect that there’s a problem with the storagesync filter, which you can investigate using fltmc.exe. I reached out to the AFS product group and they investigated over two nights (time zone differences). Eventually the logs identified the problem.

In my lab, I deployed 3 file servers as Hyper-V virtual machines. Each machine had Dynamic Memory enabled:

  • Startup Memory: 1024MB
  • Minimum Memory: 512MB
  • Maximum Memory: 4096MB

This means that each machine has access to up to 4 GB RAM. The host was far from contended so there should not have been an issue. But it turns out, there was an issue. The AfsDiag traces that I created showed that one of the machines had only 592 MB RAM free of 1907 MB free… remember that’s RAM free from the currently assigned RAM, not from the possible maximum RAM.

The storagesync filter requires more than that – the release notes for the sync agent that that the agent requires 2 GB of RAM. The team asked me to modify the dynamic memory settings of one of the file servers as follows to test. Shut down the VM and modified the memory settings to:

  • Startup Memory: 2048MB
  • Minimum Memory: 2048MB
  • Maximum Memory: 4096MB

I started up the VM and things immediately started to work as expected. The new server endpoints populated with files and the tiered endpoints started replacing cold files with reparse pointers to the cloud replicas.

The above settings might not work for you. Remember that the storage sync agent requires 2 GB RAM. Your settings might require more RAM. You’ll have to tune things specifically to your file server, particularly if you are using Dynamic Memory; tt might be worth exploring the memory buffer setting to ensure that there’s always enough free RAM for the sync agent, e.g. if the VM is set up as above set the buffer to 50% to add an extra 1 GB to the startup amount.

Thanks to Will, Manish, and Jeff in the AFS team for their help in getting to the bottom of this.

Lots of Conference Stuff Coming Up

A busy few months are coming up. Work on Azure, etc, with MicroWarehouse continues to be extremely busy, Cloud Mechanix continues, and that’s all before some speaking that I’m doing.

Evolve, National Conference Center Birmingham, UK – September 10

I’ll be presenting my “Azure PaaS for the Server Engineer” session at this community event. PaaS can be scary for server people – imagine a world with no servers! Not so quick! It turns out that this stuff isn’t so alien and our role is increasing, not shrinking in the dev side of Azure. Join me to learn more.

IP Expo Europe 2018, EXCEL London, UK – October 3-4

At this conference, I will be representing Altaro. The session I’m doing is a new one called “Solving the Azure Storage Maze”. Azure storage offers a confusing variety of storage options, and figuring out up from down can be mind boggling. My plan is to make this easy for people, boiling it down to a few simple questions/choices.

European SharePoint, Office 365, Azure Conference Copenhagen, Denmark – November 26-29

This event is pretty big, but historically it’s been a SharePoint thing so those outside of that community don’t know of it. I’ll be talking about getting more performance from your Azure VMs, including planning, implementation, and management.

Microsoft Ignite 2018, Orlando, USA – Sept 24-28

I registered to attend Ignite yesterday. I did not apply for any speaking positions. Speaking at Ignite is a buzz, but I do lots of speaking. The obligations of that are required of speakers in the expo hall are too much for my liking. I’d rather be a normal attendee that makes the most of the Monday-Thursday content. This year, I will be doing lots of Azure, but I’ll also be trying to catch up on Windows Server. Ideally, I’d have a time turner at this conference, but no one has invented that yet.

Cloud Camp 2018, Convention Centre Dublin, Ireland – Oct 17

I’m one of the organisers behind this event, sponsored by MicroWarehouse, that will feature expert community speakers (mostly MVPs) from around Europe. An opening keynote will set the scene for 20 breakout sessions across 4 cloud, productivity & security, and Windows Server 2019 & hybrid tracks. And then a closing keynote with Mary Jo Foley and Paul Thurrott will wrap things up. It’s going to be quite the show!

Cannot Create a Basic Tier Virtual Network Gateway in Azure

There is a bug in the Azure Portal that prevents you from selecting a virtual network when you pick the Basic Tier of the virtual network gateway, and you are forced into selecting the more expensive VpnGw1. I’ll show you how to workaround this bug in this post.

Background

I recently ran a hands-on Azure class in London. Part of the class required deploying & configuring a VPN gateway in the West Europe region. I always use the Basic tier because:

  • It’s cheaper – $26.79 for Basic versus $141.36 for VpnGw1 per month
  • That’s what most (by a long shot) of my customers deploy in production because it meets their needs.

I’ve had a customer in Northern Ireland report the same problem in North Europe.

The process goes like this:

  1. You select VPN gateway type
  2. Select Route-Based
  3. Select Basic as the SKU
  4. Then you attempt to select the virtual network that you want to use – it already has a gateway subnet
  5. You cannot continue because the virtual network is greyed out

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The error shown is:

The following issues must be fixed to use this virtual network: The VPN gateway cannot have a basic SKU in order for it to coexist with an existing ExpressRoute gateway.

In all cases so far, the subscriptions have been either brand new CSP/trial subscriptions with no previous resources, or my lab subscription where I’ve used a new virtual network to demonstrate this scenario – and I have never deployed ExpressRoute in any subscription.

Workaround

Credit where credit is due – some of my attendees last week figured out how to beat the UI bug.

  1. Close the Choose Virtual Network blade if it is open.
  2. Select the VpnGw1 tier gateway in the Create Virtual Network Gateway blade – don’t worry, you won’t be creating it if you don’t want to pay the price.
  3. Click Choose A Virtual Network
  4. Select your virtual network
  5. Change the SKU of the gateway back to Basic
  6. Finish the wizard

image

I know – it’s a daft UI bug, but the above workaround works.

Call For Speakers – Cloud Camp, October 17th

My employers, MicroWarehouse, are running a community event in the Dublin Convention Centre on October 17th. Cloud Camp is a tech event, with four tracks covering:

  • Azure Infrastructure: Virtual machines, storage, networking, etc
  • Azure Platform: Web Apps, Containers, etc
  • Productivity & Security: Office 365, EMS, etc
  • Windows Server 2019 & Hybrid: Windows Admin Center, virtualization, clustering, storage, networking, private cloud, etc

UPDATE: We have enough submissions on Office, Intune, and M365 overviews. We need more on Azure IaaS and Azure PaaS. But we really want sessions on Windows Admin Center, Windows Server 2019, and data protection using Azure Information Protection & Client App Security.

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Samuel Beckett bridge and Dublin Convention Center – Daniel Dudek, https://www.flickr.com/photos/dansapples/9563009141

We’re looking for speakers from around Europe to fill the slots. Expenses are being covered:

  • Flights
  • 2 nights accommodation – the nights before and after the event
  • Tickets to the event

If you’re interested in speaking then please submit your bio and session proposal(s) here.

Not A Hyper-V MVP Anymore

It’s with some sadness that I have to report that I am no longer a Hyper-V MVP.

11 years ago, I got and email to say that I had been awarded MVP status … in System Center Configuration Manager. Yes, I used to do a lot of stuff on ConfigMgr. But by the time I’d been awarded, that had all stopped and I had refocused on server stuff, particularly virtualization and especially Hyper-V. A year later, my expertise was changed to that of Hyper-V, which later merged into a larger grouping of Cloud & Datacenter Management.

Being a Hyper-V MVP changed my career. I had early access to information and I was able to pose questions about things to my fellow MVPs and the program managers of Hyper-V, Failover Clustering, networking, and Windows Server storage. I learned an incredible amount, and the many posts on this site and my books all had input from my time as an MVP. Job openings appeared because of the knowledge I obtained, and I got to write for Petri.com. And being an MVP opened up speaking opportunities at many events around the world, including TechEd Europe and the very first Ignite.

There’s so many people to thank from over the years. I won’t name names because I’ll offend someone  because I’ll surely forget someone. My (ex-)fellow Hyper-V MVPs are an awesome bunch. We all found are niche areas and I can remember many times we’d meet at a user group event and pool our knowledge to make each other better. In particular, I remember speaking at an event in Barcelona during the build-up to WS2012 and spending hours in a meeting room, going over things that we’d learned in that dizzyingly huge release.

I want to thank the Program Managers in Windows Server, Hyper-V, Failover Clustering & Storage, and Networking for the many hours of deep dive sessions, the answers they’ve given, the time they’ve taken to explain, the tips given, and the opportunity to contribute. Yes, I got a lot out of being a Hyper-V MVP, and I love looking at the feature list and thinking to myself, “me and <person X> were the ones that asked for that”. The PMs are a patient bunch … they have to be to deal with the likes of me … but they’re the ones that make the MVP program work. I’d love to tell stories, but you know … NDAs Smile

I knew that this day when I’d stop being a Hyper-V MVP was coming. Actually, that suspicion started back in the WS2012 era when I saw where MS was going with Hyper-V. The product was evolving for a market that is very small in Ireland. I knew I had to change, and that was triggered when Microsoft Ireland came to our office at work, and asked us to help develop the Azure business with Microsoft Partners. 4.5 years ago, I made the change, and I started to work with the largest Hyper-V clusters around.

Last year I was made a dual-expertise MVP with Azure being added. I work nearly 100% on Azure, and I have always written about what I work with. Anytime I find a solution, or learn something cool (that I can talk about) I write about it. I was re-awarded yesterday as an Azure MVP, but my Cloud & Datacenter Management expertise was dropped. I expected it because I simply had not earned the privilege over the last year to be re-awarded. I have a full and happy family life and I don’t have enough time to give a dual-expertise status what I think it deserves from me. I was not surprised, but I was a bit sad because being a Hyper-V MVP was a career changer for me and I made lots of great friends.

For those of you who are new to the program or who want to get involved in being an MVP, I have some advice: Make the most of it. The opportunity is awesome but you only get from it what you put in. Take part, learn, contribute, and share. It’s a virtuous cycle, and the more you do, the more you get out from it.

Being a part of the community hasn’t ended for me. I’ll still be writing and speaking about Azure. In fact, my employers are running a big community event on October 17th in Dublin (details to come soon) on Azure, Windows Server 2019, and more. And who knows … maybe I’ll still write some about Hyper-V every now and then Smile

Left to right: Tudor Damian, me, Carsten Rachfahl, Ben Armstrong (Hyper-V), Didier Van Hoye – Hyper-V MVPs with Ben at Cloud & Datacenter Conference Germany 2017.