It’s always difficult to say goodbye, especially when you’ve been doing something you enjoy for many years.
I started writing for SearchVMware.com more than three years ago, in March 2008. Up to that point I had no writing experience, and I had never really thought of myself as a writer. On a whim, I responded to a post on TechTarget’s website about writing opportunities. They gave me a shot, and I found that I was pretty good at it, and since then I’ve written more than 100 articles on SearchVMware.com and more than 100 posts for the Virtualization Pro blog. My writing at TechTarget got me a lot of exposure and opportunities over the years, and it really helped my career develop and blossom.
Looking back at my writing over the years, I thought I would highlight some of the articles that I enjoyed doing the most and am most proud of. I tend to write pretty detailed and lengthy articles, because I like to give complete coverage to a product or feature, and as a result many of my articles were turned into series. My very first assignment was to write about VMware Converter, which ended up being a three-part series. I was a little green starting out, but one of the nice things about having editors is that they take your work and make it look even better.
Virtualization deep dives
One of the things I enjoyed the most was doing deep dives, to really see how things work under the covers. Virtual machine snapshots were one technology I wanted to explore, and I ended up doing a whole series that I recently updated to reflect the changes made in vSphere.
Re-sizing virtual disks back in VMware Virtual Infrastructure 3 was not as easy as it is today. Back then, there were various ways to increase the size of a virtual disk and its OS partitions, so I documented all the various methods in a tip.
One of my all-time favorite tips was on the anatomy of a virtual machine (VM). We all know what VMs are in general terms, but my fascination with how things work drove me to find out what a VM is in technical terms. In that two-part tip, I provided a detailed overview of the virtual hardware that a VM uses and descriptions of all the various file types that make up a VM. While I was busy discovering all the various file types that make up a VM, I also focused on the various virtual disk types as well.
Viewpoints, security and ESXi
In early 2009, my editors decided to give me a monthly column entitled Virtualization Viewpoints, where I could express opinions and thoughts instead of writing about the technical side of virtualization. Since then I have written more than 20 columns, and a couple that stand out were on the free ESXi hypervisor, VMworld 2009, VMware hardware requirements and VMware's growth.
I’ve always been really into security, so when VMware released vShield, its first add-on security product, I wrote a big three-part series. I also did another multi-part series on the VMware security suite after its major update at VMworld last year. But my favorite security-related article, which was an eye-opener for many, covered how to steal a VM in three easy steps. That article served to highlight the unique attack vectors that exist in virtual infrastructures that you need to protect against.
Many of us have had a love-hate relationship with VMware’s ESXi hypervisor. I’ve written about it several times over the years, on topics such as the switch from ESX to ESXi, installing ESXi on a flash drive and installing and patching ESXi. I also wrote a sample letter for convincing your boss to move to ESXi; the sample letter concept came from a blog post on justifying VMworld to your boss.
Speaking of blogs, I was a very active blogger on the Virtualization Pro blog, which has since been retired. Some of my memorable posts there explained how traffic routes on vSwitches, virtual rings, what it means to be a vExpert, judging the Best of VMworld Awards, administrator headcounts and fault tolerance.
My final thoughts
Writing may seem easy, but it is really not. It requires dedication and skill, and you have to make sure you really know your stuff. What may seem like a simple article can sometimes take hours to write. An article is like a short story, and you need to tell the story in a manner that the reader can easily follow. I’ve found writing to be an awesome vehicle for helping me increase my knowledge and experience, as the old saying goes, while we teach, we learn. It’s also the reason for me writing this farewell post, because writing helped my career grow by attracting me recognition and respect within the VMware community.
I’ll miss writing for SearchVMware.com, but it’s time for me to start a new chapter in my life. I’ll still be an active part of the VMware community, and you can follow me on Twitter or on my personal website, vSphere-land. Thanks to TechTarget for the opportunity and support over the years; I like to think I had a part in helping to build SearchVMware.com into what it is today.
Special thanks to everyone who has supported me by reading my articles. I hope you enjoyed reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them.
Editor’s note: Thank you very much to Eric for all his work over the years. He has been a popular, dependable writer for many TechTarget sites, and we wish him the best of luck in his new endeavor.