Once again Angelo and the organizers of the Toronto VMUG put on a great event with some awesome sponsors and presentations.  Below is just my 2 cents on the material covered!  Angelo was up first talking about how to stay connected in between events with everything happening at the Toronto VMUG.  I would encourage everyone to pick one (or all) of the avenues to stay in touch with what is happening.  Angelo's presentation is below

Peter Creswell from TrendMicro was the first sponsor presentation. Peter went through Trends product line including their Deep Security, as well as spoke about the need to 'rethink' security as we now live in a virtual world. He talked about the importance of having a 'single pane of glass' (yes, there's the key line again!) management solution throughout the security for virtual, physical, and even cloud environments. He went on to speak about 4 security inhibitors in a virtual environment (Resource Contention, Instant-On Gaps, Inter-VM attacks, and Management Complexity) and how to overcome some of those issues (whether using Trends solutions or any solutions, it doesn't change the inhibitors). Overall I thought Peter was an excellent speaker, full of energy and hit on some key points regarding virtualization and security.

VMware was up next with Ken Werneburg all the way from Vancouver talking about SRM 5 and What's New!. Actually, I would classify this presentation more along the lines of a discussion as the room was very active back and forth with Ken. Ken hit on all the main new features of SRM 5 such as automated failback, vSphere Replication, Disaster Avoidance, etc and explained what and what isn't supported in each scenario. It was a great discussion. You can see Ken's presentation below but be warned the slide deck doesn't do the session justice as there was a great deal of interaction.

Josh Tseng was next talking about the WAN optimization, load balancing, and caching solutions that Riverbed has to offer. Josh spoke about the future of data and the ever so changing technology landscape that is forcing all employees to be "remote" in one way or another. From a product perspective, he focused mainly on Riverbeds flagship StealHead products and how to integrate hardware wan optimization solutions into the cloud era using both physical and virtual Steelhead instances. He touched on a new acquisition Riverbed has made which eventually led to the launch of their newest solution Stingray. He also explained how steelhead customers can benefit by the partnerships that riverbed has made with update repositories such as akamai tech and amazon.

Last but not least was Eugene Michenko from Cisco with his session titled Virtualization aware security and networking. Eugene spoke of the different types of workloads ( physical, virtual, and cloud ) running in todays datacentre and how the need to maintain the network visibility that we have in the physical world in the virtual and especially the multi-tenant cloud worlds is crucial. He presented the solution by delivering a somewhat technical dive into some of Cisco's products such as the nexus 1000v and protocols such as VXLAN can help companies provide just that. He talked about Cisco's new virtual security gateway, a zone based firewall can help to further segregate traffic in a virtual environment and showed how policies are created as well as the integration with vCenter. Also he touched on an offering that i didn't know existed which was some hands on labs that Cisco offers their partners and customers to access to play around with products like the 1000v. He directed everyone to get in touch with their Cisco reps to gain access. Quite a nice opportunity that i didn't know existed.

That brought us to the end of the half day event. The full day regional VMUG conference is slotted for February 7th so be sure to schedule it in your calendars as the regional events are always a great time and are now being labeled as a mini VMWorld of sorts containing very technical deep-dives and breakout sessions presented by some of the top names in the industry. You may even find a hands on lab or two there. Once again thanks to Angelo and all those who help to organize and put on these great user conferences for the GTA. And for those who weren't there or for those that were and need a reminder be sure to stay connected with your local Toronto VMUG by following @torontovmug on twitter, joining the Toronto VMUG LinkedIn Group, and subscribe to the Toronto VMUG blog.  As always, you can get more information regarding your local VMUG at www.myvmug.org or by following @myvmug on twitter. Oh, almost forgot, you can circle your Toronto VMUG on google +  now as well!!! See you in February.