Going to VMworld 2018? Here's Your Complete Guide to the Event, Pivotal Style

August 20, 2018 Courtney McShane

Nearly 25,000 people from all over the world will make the trek to attend VMworld 2018. The passion for virtualization and cloud computing is immense and those of us dedicated to building a better future with technology will be in attendance to share ideas, connect with fellow experts and industry colleagues, and take home new technical concepts to implement.  VMware has more people attend its annual conference than there are employees at the company. The sheer amount of brainpower this conference brings together is truly awesome.

You'll likely attend the incredible General Sessions, kicked off by VMware’s CEO Pat Gelsinger at 9am on Monday. And make sure you make it to the oh-so-wonderful VMworld Fest featuring jazz, dueling pianos, The Purple Experience (Prince cover band), San Francisco-native DJ Chris Clouse, and main stage headliner Royal Machines.  But there are many other great sessions and events, many of them with a Pivotal flare, which you'll want to add to your own calendar, and for that, I’m happy to help.

Here are a some of the highlights taking place at VMworld that you won’t want to miss:

1. Wells Fargo Discusses Security with Pivotal Cloud Foundry

How do you balance security and innovation? Come hear how one of the top banks in the world navigates this dynamic.

Leaders from Wells Fargo will offer up their story, and tell you how they tackle compliance while managing the daily needs of a business which supports 70 million customers and 8,200 retail branches in 35 countries.  They will discuss how PCF enables them to fend off cyber attacks that threaten their business. To prepare for this session, I highly recommend reading Pivotal’s take on working with big banks, written by Fadzi Ushewokunze, Senior Platform Architect at Pivotal.

Time: Wednesday, August 29, 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. | #CNA1464BU


2. Kubernetes On Fire

Nearly everyone is experimenting with Kubernetes, so it’s no surprise to see the open source project all over the agenda. The question many organizations are asking now: how do we take our Kubernetes workloads to production? Pivotal Container Service, PKS, is a popular option - come learn why! Pivotal’s Sr. Director of Technology, Cornelia Davis, showcases PKS customer stories and the security, isolation, and high availability of K8s clusters.

When: Sunday, August 26, 2:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. | #CNA1780QU

But that's not all Cornelia has planned at VMworld. She will also discuss Kubernetes at enterprise scale in the Solutions Exchange Theatre.  The ability to #DevLikeaStartup sounds nice, but executing the seamless capabilities associated with rapid CI/CD deployment is challenging in a worldwide enterprise with strong data gravity and compliance mandates.  If you ever are the one to lose sleep over how to maintain controls while providing developers the freedom to code and use Kubernetes, this session is for you. Find out how to get more zzz’s by leveraging your existing VMware investments to implement PKS.

When: Wednesday, August 29, 1:50 p.m. to 2:10 p.m.


3. Real-World Stories from PKS Customers

Swisscom Cloud Labs, Priority Payment Systems, and NCB Jamaica are all Pivotal enterprise customers who have deployed PKS and will be on stage with VMware’s VP of Product Management, Paul Dul.  They each discuss their successes, their challenges, the unique company demands and hurdles they jumped through to reach their goals. For those of you serious about bringing Kubernetes containers to your IT environment, this panel session is a must-see.  

When:  Monday, August 27, 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. | CNA1199PU


4. Invite only - Customer Cocktail Reception @ Red Square Las Vegas Frozen Ice Bar

Pivotal and VMware are hosting a joint cocktail reception Monday evening as a big Thank You! to joint customers who use our technology to run their businesses.  The Red Square Las Vegas Restaurant & Vodka Bar is famous for its frozen ice bar and private vodka vault.  It also has an intriguing list of signature cocktails and martinis created by a team of master mixologists.  Don’t be surprised when special guests make an appearance to this exclusive and grand event. Speak to your Pivotal rep about getting on the list soon, as spaces are disappearing quickly!

When: Monday, August 27


5. Demos & Hands-on Labs with Pivotal

Anxious for a concrete plan for how Kubernetes, NSX-T, vSphere, PKS and Pivotal Ready Architecture fit into your IT strategy?  Swing by the Dell Technologies, Modern Infrastructure Solutions booth to speak to Pivotal experts about the latest technology being leveraged by the most admired brands in the world.  We dive into product architecture and perform LIVE demos at the booth, and offer four 5-minute talks throughout the day where you can hear about customers who have installed PRA and PKS. VMworld also offers Hands-on Labs (HOL) which allow you to get in the driver's seat.  Keep your eye out for a booth that looks like this:

When: Monday, August 27 to Thursday, August 30, Booth #1267


6. Automate Everything, Cars, Trains, NSX and CNA

Pivotal Principal Platform Engineer Sabha Parameswaran will discuss using CI pipelines with Concourse to automate NSX, PKS and Pivotal Application Services.  It’s a level 300 VMware  session, so bring the nerdy version of yourself to this breakout. Sabha's co-presenter, Niran Even-Chen, expressed grand excitement about the opportunity to share his experience in this arena.  With that kind of happiness, you know it’s going to be a great session.

When: Thursday, August 30, 1:15 p.m. to 1:45 p.m. | #CODE5556U


7. Fill your Calendar with All the Pivotal Sessions

Just what you’ve been waiting for: a comprehensive list of all things Kubernetes, PKS, agile, Cloud Foundry, Concourse, cloud-native, DevOps, and value stream mapping taking place at VMworld from Sunday, August 26th through Thursday, Aug 30th, 2018. To access the comprehensive list, click here.


8.  Value Stream Mapping in a DevOps World

Wake up bright and early (or don’t sleep at all… it is Vegas after all) and learn about Pivotal’s magically effective routines that drive the people and processes which launch apps into production at incredible speeds.  Join this session to capture the basics and apply them in your enterprise.

For those new to this concept, value stream mapping is a lean management method for analyzing the process of turning a concept into a product all the way through customer adoption and support with significantly less waste.  Speakers include Pivotal Advisory Platform Engineer Jamie O’Meara and Ben Kamysz, Manager of Platform Architecture at Pivotal.

Time: Wednesday, August 29, 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. | #DEV1325BU


9. PKS Primer for Partners

When it comes to PKS, partners are critical pieces of the puzzle.  During this session, VMware shares its plans for partners. Hear from an early adopter partner about its success with customers, and how PKS enables enterprises and service providers to simplify deployment and operations of Kubernetes container services.  This session will be hosted by VMware’s Senior Director, PKS Partner Development, Laura Fraser. As a note, these sessions are open to VMware Partners exclusively in the Partner Lounge within VMvillage (Bayside C- Level 1) and seats are limited.

When:  Monday, August 27, 3:00 p.m. to 3:25 p.m. | #PAR7406U


10. #Vodgeball

This year marks the 10 year anniversary of the double-elimination dodgeball tournament at VMworld. The smartest, dorkiest, strongest techies get out from behind their computers and off the internet for some fun spirited ball throwing.  Teams raise funds to support the Wounded Warrior Project.  It’s tons of fun and benefits a great cause.  If you’re not yet signed up for #v0dgeball, there is still time!  If you’d like to donate, you can do so here.

When: Sunday, August 26, 2:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., University of NV Las Vegas Student Union & Event Services Building

Send us some love on Twitter @Pivotal by featuring a good quote and picture from one of these sessions.  Be sure to visit our Pivotal Platform Architects live in the Dell Technologies Modern Infrastructure Solutions Booth throughout the show.

Can’t make it to VMworld 2018? Check out the live-stream video.


About the Author

Courtney McShane

Courtney is a Program Director at Pivotal. Courtney is dedicated to accelerating growth among strategic partners Dell EMC and VMware as a part of Pivotal's Dell Tech Synergy team. She spent 5 years at legacy EMC in Tech Marketing and most recently drove sales as Director of Business Development for a portfolio of construction companies in the Energy space.

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