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Aug 05 2010

Train Signal’s new Pro Series video – my experience

Train Signal approached me a few months ago about doing some video training for them in their new Pro Series line of videos. They asked me for topic suggestions and I presented several ideas to them and they ultimately chose the one on vSphere advanced features. I really enjoy exploring new features, big and small, and I’m not content with just figuring out how to use them but also need to know how they work in-depth. As a result I spend a lot of time researching and playing around to find out all the in’s-n-out’s of a feature. I had plenty of experience with the features but the actual recording process was new to me. As a result I approached it as a producer might do for a movie. I first jotted down an outline to use for creating Powerpoint slides, next I created the slides themselves, once I had the slides finalized I created a script for each slide complete with all the text and any demonstration sections. The reason I created the script was because I didn’t want to leave anything out and I wanted everything to be perfect especially if I had to do multiple takes when recording the videos.

Once I had all that down I started creating the videos, I basically created an AVI file for each slide which the editors at Train Signal stitched together to create the final production. In some cases I recorded some slides several times as I don’t like even minor speaking mistakes to be present in the recordings. It was quite a long tedious process and the more I got into it the more comfortable I became with doing it. I think the end result was pretty good, I tend to be highly critical of myself and as a result try to make sure everything is perfect. I have a few work ethics I live by:

  1. Don’t do anything half-ass
  2. Go big or go home
  3. Over-commit and over-deliver.

In a nutshell I try to deliver high-quality work all the time and always exceed expectations. So I think the videos turned out great and I hope you enjoy them, my advanced features videos covered the following features:

  • VMCI
  • VMDirectPath
  • Dynamic Voltage and Frequency Scaling (DVFS)
  • DPM
  • Fault Tolerance
  • pvSCSI adapters
  • VMFS volume grow and VM disk hot-add (and other disk related stuff)
  • VMotion and Storage VMotion
  • Thin Provisioning

Combined with the other great content from David Davis, Sean Clark and Hal Rottenberg the vSphere Pro Series Volume 2 should be a great training resource for both beginning and experienced vSphere administrators. Overall I had a good experience creating the videos and I look forward to doing more of them in the future. Enjoy!

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