Category: Tech

November 30th, 2015 by NerdBlurt

The thought to be connected to a mobile device or electronic device is here, I do it, my kids do it, friends, strangers all do it. We are connected more ways today then ever and it’s bad for us. Ask yourself when is the last time you took time to just yourself? When is last time you were out and the table had a bunch of people or worse just you and one other and you are sitting there and the other person or yourself is on your mobile device? I’m guilty of this all the time. It’s wrong though on so many social levels, this thought of always being connected.

I often wonder why or exactly how we became this way, people are like Pavlov’s dog with mobile devices. Our devices go off and we react instantly, or worse someone else who has a similar ringtone goes off and we check our phones. My wife has texted me and if i don’t respond i get the “HELLO” messages then subsequent 6 phone calls, and then some nasty voice messages. Why? Because i just happened to leave phone somewhere or was cooking and couldn’t answer. We as a society are screwed, we tether ourselves for constant power, because we can’t let our batteries get past 99% as we need to stay connected.

Now I enjoy the interactions with others via electronic communication, but more and more i am cutting back. I have left my phone at home, weekends I take time to do no work. I also have been responding to others slower, un-training myself and to the condition we have been brought too. The majority of the world have become zombies. But it is more than that, I am raising four kids who right now my youngest son is in a committed relationship with his iPhone and watching live video game streams..all the time! My daughter is always facetiming or snapchatting with her girlfriends, to the point of crazy hours. But what does always being connected do to relationships? It destroys them!Group On phones

I’ll give you a few examples where kids these days are too connected.

Take a boy and a girl back in the day, you can only talk either in person and for certain hours on your home phone. No biggie, you would chat or hangout then go home and have time to digest and time to yourself! We knew all our friends phone numbers, how to get to their houses without GPS, but we were able to grow as people.

Same situation today with a boy and a girl – You are connected via six forms of social media, text, call, video chat, 24/7. If the other doesn’t respond right away you can guarantee an argument, let’s then add in you liking or commenting on someone else’s post. World War 6 would be prettier.

That is where we are today, our kids and even us do not have the chance to grow in an unconnected way. I can say that I have at-least 4 ways to contact 98% of the people I consider family and friends. My wife has 100 ways to contact me.

Being connected is good, but it is one of those things that can be to good after a while.

Nerd’s Blurt

I will probably go on in other posts about this same topic, it is something I think of often and wanted to share my ramblings here with you all. So what are your thoughts?

Posted in Tech Tagged with: , , , , ,

Content and Social Media Marketing, Time, Job, change
October 1st, 2015 by NerdBlurt

Today I officially start my transition with-in HP Enterprise to a new role! The last year and a few months has been an interesting ride both personally and professionally as a tech marketing professional. As the title suggests I am evolving into a new role. A role that is more suited for some of my strengths and an area for me to grow more personally and professionally. I am taking on the role of Content and Social Media Marketing Manager for our Information Management and governance solutions under HP Enterprise Software Big Data group. Headed by David Jones.

1726Whats next

Well right now I am in the planning stages of my new role and there is a lot for me to do on that stage. So I maybe quiet over the next few weeks, then the implementation stage will hit and you all will see some more things from me on a HP Enterprise level in my social channels. But have no fear I am still the same Blurt you all have grown to know and love.

Taking this step right now feels so right and I am excited to put into practice some new ideas and helping shape some pretty sweet things for the Tech community and for HP Enterprise.

This Blog

This blog isn’t going anywhere! while it has been very quiet that will change soon too, I will be writing more and on a variety of topics. If there is something you want to know more about or hear my opinion on let me know!

Nerd’s Blurt

It is very exciting to be part of an organization that allows you to grow, I have that with HP Enterprise and my leadership team. They allow me to be me, and that is huge! I was talking to someone the other day and explained how I do not feel like I am working at all, not because i do not do anything but I LOVE what I am doing. Is there stress at times? yes, but that makes it more challenging and rewarding when things come through.

I challenge all of you to do what you love and to love what you do, don’t just settle.

Posted in Miscellaneous, Tech Tagged with: , , , , , ,

May 7th, 2015 by JFrappier

Jonathan Frappier Virtxpert

**Disclaimer: I am an EMC employee, this post was not sponsored or in any way required by my employer, it is my experience getting to know this particular product.**

Up until now I went through a basic ViPR SRM installation, getting a basic single VM environment setup. What I want to show in this post is my favorite ViPR SRM feature – topology maps. To understand why these are useful, lets step back and give some scenarios:

You are the personal responsible for supporting the storage within your environment, you may support other things but ultimately when there is a storage related problem your name is called. An application own comes to you and says their application is slow, and that the network team said everything on their end is fine so its probably the storage. Great – now what?

  1. You come into a new organization – whether as an internal IT person or a var and you’ve inherited an environment cabled by 3 monkeys and a cat with no documentation – now what?

This is where topology maps can be very useful. The topology maps is that end-to-end visualization and monitoring component I mentioned in previous posts. I see from my virtual machine or even some applications such as SQL Server all the way through to the underlying storage, and drill down on each component. Let me shows you some examples.

To access the topology maps, click on Explore >> Hosts – small aside here – host could be any physical or virtual server in the environment discovered by ViPR SRM, not just ESXi hosts. So this could be an ESXi host, a virtual machine, or a physical host running its own OS.


From this report, you can see a list of all the hosts in the environment, which for some could be a very extensive list. I should mention that the filter field is not a search field, so you cannot type the end of a machine name; for example maybe all your VM names end in OS type or some other identifier, you couldn’t just type W2K8 to find a server name myserver-w2k8, you would have to start with myserver, but would then see a list of all servers starting with that string. You can filter on any column that has the funnel icon, so for example I could filter on just physical hosts, or virtual machines by clicking the funnel icon in the host type column;


Using the example above, let’s say an application owner has complained about performance and you need to investigate to see if storage could be the problem. Filter on the host name, in this case I will pick on mhmbd078-W2K8, as you can see below I start typing that name and can select it from a the list or type it in full and hit enter to filter on that one host



Now I just see that specific host, in this case a virtual machine as you can see here with 16GB of memory and 4 vCPU:


This much information is available in just a few clicks, now there are many places you could get this information but as I continue to drill deeper, you will start to see just how much information we have at hand. With just what is available so far, you might be able to say to the application owner who issued the complain that there is not enough memory, for example maybe you know that this particular application needs 32GB of memory, so disk I/O could be a problem if the application and OS are constantly swapping to disk. But, maybe so far everything checks out, if I click on any of the text here, it will take me into the detail of that virtual machine.

Now, this is where it gets interesting; what you see below is the topology map for mbmbd078-w2k8, we can see the host, the datastore it is on, the host it is on, the VSANs it is connected to and the arrays connected to those VSANs. Also, notice to the right we have different reports related to the host, we can see attributes about the host which is show by default, you can also see:

  • Capacity information about the hosts local disks, in this case VMDKs and since it is a virtual machine, the datastore
  • Path details for the disks attached to the host
  • Related storage performance
  • Events related to the host


You can click on any element in the map to see details specific to that item, for example if you click on the datastore – DS_Bootcamp_D you can see reports about the datastore, or on the host – you guessed it, reports about the host. You may have also noticed the + icon next to some of the elements, this is because there are additional components, using VSAN0040 as an example, we can click on the + sign to see switches in that VSAN


Now I see two switches, each with their own + icon, I can keep drilling down and see ports on that switch as well. I can expand different elements and hover over different components to see how they are connected. For example I have expanded my host to see my HBAs, I can see that the particular HBA I am interested in is connected to VSAN mptb023 so I have expanded that as well and drilled down to see the switch ports. While I have some limited lab resolution available, you can see here that when I hover over the HBA from the host it highlights the path to the port on the switch – in this case fc1/6 (as shown by the blue highlighted line)


This is just one specific report, and I have only skimmed the surface of the data available in this report. Imagine being able to show this to an application owner as you troubleshoot each component, and explain how/why any particular piece of the infrastructure supporting the application is, or isn’t doing what it is supposed to. For those folks who worked in a silo’d type group, I’d urge you not use this information to punt back over your wall to someone else, but rather be the person to start poking some pinholes in the silo, call up a virtualization, OS, or network person depending on what you might think the problem is and work with them, sharing knowledge and help the application owner be a happy customer. After all, even if you are “internal” IT – you are still providing a service to the business – they are you customers, treat them like it. Silos will only fall if someone starts poking holes, no reason it can’t be you.

If you haven’t done so, chat with your EMC rep (they can likey get you in touch with an SE who can help if you have any setup questions) and head over to to sign up for an account and download ViPR SRM which comes with a 30 day license.

ViPR SRM Explore Reports and Topology Maps

Posted in Tech Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

May 7th, 2015 by JFrappier

Jonathan Frappier Virtxpert

The PowerCLI Cookbook by Phillip Sellers is an excellent resource for any skill level, whether you are a beginner or looking for a great reference to have with you.

PowerCLI Cookbook by Phillip Sellers

First and foremost, this book far exceeds what I expect out of a technology cookbook. If you step back and think about a (food) cookbook you get the recipe for what you are going to make (i.e. what you are going to do in PowerCLI) and the ingredients to make it (i.e. the cmdlets necessary to perform the task). Phillip took that a step further and began the cookbook with how to actually start the oven, or in this case a simple recipe to connect to vCenter and get started using PowerCLI.

The chapters in the book are laid out very well, starting with basic hosts related tasks, before moving on to vCenter, virtual machines, and other more complex scenarios – the build up in this format makes it excellent for those who are new to PowerCLI, or even VMware for that matter. Each recipie also has a “how it works” section where the components use are explained (no one has ever told me how food flavors work together!).

You could quite literally use the book to just about stand up a complete vSphere environment as all the major topics such as networking, datastores, clusters, and virtual machine management (including using PowerCLI to invoke in guest scrips) is covered.

**Disclaimer – I have a book published with Packt Publishing and spoke to Phillip before he decided to write the book. This book was provided to me by the author but the review was not read, or approved by Phillip, it is simply my opinion on the book and its contents.**

Yummy! – PowerCLI Cookbook Review by Phillip Sellers (@pbsellers)

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May 7th, 2015 by JFrappier

Jonathan Frappier Virtxpert

**Disclaimer: I am an EMC employee, this post was not sponsored or in any way required by my employer, it is my experience getting to know this particular product.**

There were two software related announcements at EMC World this week which I found very exciting. Building on the free for no production use of RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines from VMworld 2014, EMC announced the same for ScaleIO. ScaleIO allows you build your own Hyperconverged Infrastructure solution (HCI). This is the same software used in the new VxRack from VCE which was also announced at EMC World.

CoprHDIn addition to ScaleIO, EMC also announced CoprHD which is an open source version of EMC ViPR (@coprhd). ViPR (which is also free for non production use) is a solution that allows you to manage multiple arrays and present those as virtual volumes to hosts. In addition to managing the arrays, it also provides a self-service and automation at the storage layer. EMC ViPR also supports ScaleIO, assuming this carries over to CoprHD you could deploy a fully managed, and automated storage solution on commodity hardware for test/dev or QA (I hope they publish more specific guidelines on just what they mean by “non-production”).

Last, but not least, the community version of the VNXe which you can use to provide full block and file servers on commodity hardware. The vVNX will later come in a supported ROBO and cloud edition.

My hope is that CoprHD, ScaleIO, and the community edition of the vVNX will lead to more solutions being open sourced and offered in a free to use model. CoprHD should be available on GitHub by June, ScaleIO by the end of May, whereas the vVNX is available now for download.


New free software from EMC to build your own SDS solution

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