Watchguard has recently retired their X series of firewalls and replaced them with their new lineup of XTM boxes. I took this opportunity to replace my X series firewalls with some from the new lineup, and found a neat way to migrate your existing configuration from old to new in a few very easy steps. Note: _Normally I would not recommend migrating your configuration in this manner. In my mind you should always rebuild rules when replacing your firewall, as it is the perfect time to review and do some QA.

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Some times things just happen, and before you know it you’re sitting in your in-laws living room talking to an Englishman and an American via Skype. And to top it of; it’s all being recorded. And to make matters even worse, we decided to try and make it a regular thing. The recordings that is, not the «in your in-laws living room» thing, that was a one-off for sure. What I’m trying to say here is that yours truly, Ed Czerwin and Chris Dearden has decided that we want to be rock-stars and start our own little virtualization related podcast.

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Is 2010 over already? I guess it’s true that time flies when your having fun! 2010 has been a great year for me, both personally and professionally. I won’t bore you to death with personal issues, but as far as professionally goes you’ll just have to bare with me. 2010 was the year I really feel that I got a lot of good work done, and some of that are really significant changes for my organization which is in a way better state IT wise now than in 2009.

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In a previous post, Using the WANem WAN Emulator Virtual Appliance, I’ve talked about how I’ve successfully used WANem to emulate different WAN scenarios. Since I work for a shipping company, the ability to emulate VSAT conditions are especially useful for testing and proof-of-concept scenarios. You can use WANem a couple of different ways but my setup is pretty simple but does the job perfectly. Downloading WANem I have chose to use the WANem Virtual Appliance running in a virtual machine hosted by VMware Workstation.

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Thanks to Maish Saidel-Keesing, vExpert 2010 and blogger over at Technodrone I have been made aware that VMware has used one of my posts here on vNinja in their internal presentation material. The material in question is vSphere 4.1 to 4.0 differences (page 44 and 45 in vSphere 4.1 Deep Dive - Part 1 - v6.pptx), where my post about Using USB Pass-through in vSphere 4.1 is quoted and my screenshots used.

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When Rich Brambley posted «A Pirate Invented Server Virtualization» today, it reminded me of a little story from my own production environment. This story is a couple of years old, but sadly it’s still valid. A very specialized application that we run, requires a SQL Server Express instance, a proxy/licensing server and client installation with license files to work. This application isn’t very advanced, nor very resource intensive so by nature it’s prime for running in a virtualized environment.

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A couple of days ago, while I was at VMworld Europe I got the following tweet from Asbjørn A. Mikkelsen (@neslekkim) (translated from norwegian): @h0bbel Do you know if I can script something against vCenter to duplicate (or create from template) VMs, and also start/stop them? My immediate response, was of course to suggest using PowerCLI. Asbjørn, who works as a full time developer, jumped at PowerCLI immediately and within a very short time frame came up with a PowerCLI script for the task at hand.

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Now that the VMworld events are over for 2010, I’m still trying to digest a lot of the impressions I’ve had over the past few days. However, I do have a couple of suggestions I would like to voice: Add contact information to the attendee badge! Just like David Owen (@vMackem) suggested, adding Twitter ID and blog link to the attendee badge would make it easier to keep track of everyone you meet up with.

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I’m back home again, after spending the better part of this week in Copenhagen, attending VMworld Europe 2010. Let me just say, straight off the bat, that attending VMworld is probably the best idea I’ve had in years. In reality, that’s not saying much, but the value of attending is immense. The way VMworld is organized, with lots of simultaneous sessions, labs and other activities is both a challenge and a blessing.

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Undoubtedly one of the most popular «features» of VMworld 2010, both in the US and in EU, are the labs. These hands-on exercises in configuring and using various VMware products lets you play around without the need for lab equipment or licenses installed locally. What if VMware extended this to not only run during the VMworld conferences? Let us get our hands dirty all year round! It’s hard to have a full lab setup in the office, and if we could book time in the VMware Cloud Lane to play around with VMware vCloud™, VMware vCenter™ Site Recovery Manager or even VMware ThinApp™ that would be great!

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