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Day Two Cloud 047: Highlights And Analysis From Cloud Field Day 7

Episode 47

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Today’s Day Two Cloud podcast storms into your podcast player with product news from VMware, SolarWinds, and startup Pensando.

In April 2020, Ethan Banks attended a virtual Cloud Field Day event where vendors with cloudy products showcased their wares. Ethan and Ned share highlights from those presentations, discuss pros and cons of the products, and tease out a theme: solving problems related to distributing computing.

Cloud Field Day (and other events under the Tech Field Day umbrella) assembles delegate panels of independent tech professionals for presentations from sponsoring vendors. The delegates ask questions, push back on marketing claims, and generally serve as surrogates for the broader IT community to better understand the value and limitations of tech products and services.

Topics discussed in today’s show include:

  • VMware Cloud on AWS
  • Whether there are advantages of running VMware in the cloud
  • VMware HCX
  • VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Grid
  • Monitoring cloud performance with SolarWinds
  • The startup Pensando, which makes a SmartNIC to offload a server’s network processing


  1. What is the problem you have? If you can’t articulate the problem, you don’t know which product you need. Explaining your problem is harder than you think. Engineers think about technical problems, but technical problems ARE NOT THE PROBLEM.
  2. Distributed computing is where the world is at or is heading. Understanding distributed application architecture and how to build an infrastructure to support it is a crucial skill. Many of the tools I see are band-aids to handle an application that was not designed to run in a distributed environment. If you really understand distributed computing, you can lead an actual “digital transformation”.
  3. Ask yourself whether Kubernetes is a thing you need to know, or whether it’s a platform you want to use but not care about. What role do you want to play in managing your org’s Kubernetes infrastructure? Do you want to drive the car, or be a mechanic? I can explain the basics of how an internal combustion engine works, but I’m not an auto mechanic. I’m starting to think there’s a balance of knowing “just enough” Kubernetes. Ignorance isn’t good, but do you need to be a CKA?

Show Notes:

Cloud Field Day 7 video playlist – Tech Field Day

VMware Cloud on AWS Networking and Security Documentation – VMware

VMware DRaaS – VMware

VMware HCX – VMware

VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Grid – VMware

SolarWinds Pingdom – SolarWinds

SolarWinds Loggly – SolarWinds

SolarWinds AppOptics – SolarWinds

Pensando Distributed Services for the Enterprise – Pensando (PDF)

Pensando Distributed Services for Cloud Providers – Pensando (PDF)

Pensando Naples Distributed Services Card DSC-25– Pensando (PDF)

Pensando Naples Distributed Services Card DSC-100 – Pensando (PDF)

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Episode 47