CNCF Meetup Recap: Hello Lemur!

Tuesday March 3rd was another great day for community as the Boston CNCF Meetup group arrived at the Turbonomic offices on Boylston street in Boston for a great evening of discussions and learning.  I was happy to be able to be in town for the event and to watch as my colleague, Meng Ding, who presented the Turbonomic Lemur project.

With the challenges of Coronavirus, it was actually quite a good turnout.  I know that a lot of folks are re-evaluating meetup and travel policies.  Big thanks go out to Chris Graham and Asena Hertz from the Turbonomic team for pulling this together.

Introducing Turbonomic Lemur

The Turbonomic Lemur project is a packaged set of open source tools which includes Grafana, Kiali, Jaeger, and also a light version of Turbonomic which allows for the visualization of the dependencies and resourcing of the entire containerized stack.  This project has been created because of the amount of requests we hear out in the community about how challenging it can be to configure and deploy these tools, plus that even with them, there is no context to how it relates to the actual applications.  

Meng kicked off the event with a demo of what Lemur is and what it looks like when deployed.  Being able to have a single interface for all of the tooling and easy ways to interact with the products was definitely a hit for the folks in the audience.  Since I’ve been contributing to the documentation and some community engagement work for Lemur, this was especially exciting to see that people really loved what it did as a graphical tool….but then the real fun began!

Lemur on the big screen!

The next part of the demo featured the featured the Lemurctl command line tool and this really got some folks excited about the potential.  Meng was able to easily spin up command lines that showed the different resources, utilization, and most importantly, the dependencies in a single CLI of everything from the app inside the container, through the container, pod, and node.  There was a literal “wait, you can see all that and the dependencies in a single CLI command?!” from someone in the audience.  So cool!!

Listening and Learning

Meng and all of the folks there are big fans of any community interaction because we can all learn so much from each other.  Tech and business do not exist in bubbles and learning from the lessons of others can really save time and effort for our own projects and deployments of new products and ideas.  Meng had a keen audience gathering after his presentation as you can see here:

There is much more planned for Lemur and for my own sharing of information about it.  If you’re keen to get involved with this or to learn more, jump into the Github for Lemur and take a look.  I’ll be posting some demo resources here on my blog as well in the coming weeks as I do more exploration and documentation to help folks get the most out of it and make it as easy as possible to build and deploy.

Meng and the entire engineering team who built it deserve some big kudos.  They’ve made three particularly challenging open platforms deployable in a single package.  That’s a massive time and resource saver.

Thanks to everyone again for supporting the CNCF meetup in Boston and the Lemur project.  Looking forward to sharing much more very soon!

Free Download – DevOps Automation with Terraform and VMware

Content planning for 2020 is underway and I realized that it’s a good time to share the recent O’Reilly report that I had done in 2019 here with folks.  DevOps may seem a long way off, but the methods of automating your infrastructure creation in order to enable better DevOps practices is not.  Even VMware environments are seeing the benefits of automation whether it’s DevOps as the ultimate goal or not.

My O’Reilly book DevOps Automation with Terraform and VMware is like the culmination of all my loves.  It’s about simplifying with automation, using Terraform to easily provision infrastructure, and it is a based in a VMware environment which I had a lot of requests about.  As a long-time VMware vExpert and lover of the VMware ecosystem, this was really fun to make.

You can download the book by clicking the link here to go to where it’s hosted at the Turbonomic website, or by clicking the image of the cover below.  I hope that you enjoy the book and find it helpful. It’s just a small step in your automation journey, but in just under 26 pages, you’ll hopefully find some gems that get you to love Terraform and automation as much as I do!

Microsoft Ignite 2019 Community Coffee Exchange

Got beans?  Want beans?  Coming to Microsoft Ignite 2019 in Orlando?  Welcome to the Diabolical Coffee Community Bean Exchange group!  Jump on in by filling out the form here or head over to to sign up before the event which is happening November 4-8 in Orlando, Florida.

How does Community Bean Exchange Work?

Find a local roaster or some of your very favorite beans.  Package up one or two single pound bags of whole bean coffee and bring them to Microsoft Ignite with you in Orlando.  Everyone who fills out the form below (that’s the important part) will be a part of the exchange.  Our crew (aka DiscoPosse and anyone willing to help) will mix and match the caffeinated goodness and prepare pickup packages for folks to take back to their home coffee brewing stations.

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Where to Bring your Beans

Bean drop off and pick up will be at the Turbonomic booth in the expo hall.  Beans must be dropped off by midday Tuesday and pickup can begin on Wednesday.  Join in the fun and I can’t wait to see everyone in person at the event!  Logistics email will be sent out prior to and during Microsoft Ignite which is why it’s super important that you fill out the form to be included in the communications.

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Big Updates with Turbonomic 6.4 – vSAN/HCI and Horizon VDI

The Turbonomic team has been working hard on some excellent features in the most recent Turbonomic 6.4 release. As a long-time VMware vExpert and advocate for the virtualization community, I’m especially excited about two very slick additions for VMware vSAN and VMware Horizon VDI which I’ve been testing out and loving the results!

We have a lot to share at the VMworld event which I’ll be attending and if you aren’t able to join me there in San Francisco, I have a great team presenting in Barcelona, plus you can always check out the Turbonomic Resources page for videos, blogs, and other updates.

VMware vSAN and VMware HCI

There is little doubt that Hyperconverged infrastructure is becoming much more widely used. vSAN introduces some great new deployment patterns and also changes the way that you need to plan how to build and operate in order to get the best out of HCI and the vSAN distributed storage platform.  I’m writing this as I wait to board a flight to VMworld 2019 so there will be lots to talk about there as we share the new Turbonomic 6.4 release and also hear about the news and updates from VMware.

Real-time optimization for applications is now enhanced by fully feature-aware analytics from VMware vSAN including compression, deduplication, and the redundancy/resiliency settings.  This means that when decision are made by Turbonomic about where to place and how to scale VMs, containers, and applications, there is additional understanding of the actual capabilities and capacity of vSAN that are helping to drive the decision.

This also means that planning for growth includes the performance and capacity that is feature-aware.  When you run plans to model how a host replacement, or scenarios of how you may scale or migrate workloads, you are getting the actual infrastructure and application scale decisions based on the available performance/capacity plus full understanding of the raw storage and host configurations needed to deliver it.

Here is a quick highlight of the vSAN/HCI features in Turbonomic 6.4 (yes…that’s my crazy voice in there)

VMware Horizon VDI

Is it the year of VDI finally?! Based on how I’ve been seeing things in some super exciting customer deployments, yes it certainly is. One of the really cool examples is a company with their entire workforce on VDI…and it’s not a small company. The old school issue of managing “boot storms” is at a whole different level when you have worldwide employees across every time zone and all running on centralized Horizon infrastructure distributed across a few data centers for resiliency and latency reduction.

The use-case that Turbonomic is solving is that when users login and run, the actual consumption of resources is continuously analyzed for real-time, maximums, average, and historical patterns in order to decide how they should scale their VDI instance and where it should be placed based on the underlying infrastructure hosting the Horizon desktop pools.

Turbonomic will tell you where to place the user, how to size their desktop, and can even automate the changes in a service window and even tracks the user logout trigger so that Horizon admins can let their Horizon user entitlements be driven for better performance and efficiency by Turbonomic. That also extends into the scaling and growth planning which is done using the same analytics engine. Super cool!

Here’s a quick highlight reel of the feature:

Much more to come!

Here is a quick end-to-end list of the significant updates of the release which also includes a ton of really great updates for Microsoft Azure, the introduction of what are now rebranded as right-time actions, a big set of updates for Kubernetes, and much more!  Congratulations to the Turbonomic engineering team and a great release and let me know if you want any more details as I’m happy to jump in and help folks get to know more about the platform!