Over the past year or so, while working as an independent contractor I was involved with a number of partner projects using the VMware Validated design (VVD) as a foundational component.
I then joined VMware and had the pleasure of attending VMworld 2018 US as an employee.
It was an amazing experience to meet customers, and discuss how VMware technology could be used to help with their businesses.
One thing I took away with me was how important the VVD resources are to the whole ecosystem.
The VVD is a set of architecture and operational guidance documentation designed by a dedicated team in VMware who have spent an enormous amount of time working with specific product teams.
Based on a number of use cases, the material gives detailed guidance on how to achieve and support a production level SDDC.
As a new version of the VVD was just published, I have been reviewing the changes and created a mindmap to use as an aid in discussions I may have.
Some Thoughts about the VVD
Are VVD and VCF the same thing?
VVD is reference and guidance information to enable customers and partners to produce a fully supported VMware based platform using several VMware products together.
The VVD caters for several use cases that a customer/partner may wish to use.
A validated set of product versions and configuration advice is provided, along with design choices.
VCF is a separate product produced by VMware which provides a VVD based deployment using a separate automated tooling method
VMware based automation tooling of deployment and lifecycle management gives the customer or partner the quickest route to producing a validated design with a consistent approach and ease of support.
Is the VVD a complete design?
The VVD is not just a reference architecture, and it does provide detailed day 2 and configuration information.
From an architect point of view, I would still suggest that the VVD is used for guidance and the documented design decisions within the material are reviewed and validated for the specific customer/partner use case.
Operationalising a design is still required, a production platform may need specific standard operating procedures and local information depending on the support team skill set.
Can I use the VVD for the VCDX?
As a mentor, I have had this question a number of times.
The VVD is a great resource (ie diagrams, stencils and design choices, a number of VMware employees who are VCDX holders worked on the project.
However, the VCDX is a certification that requires someone to show mastery of design architecture in a particular technology stack.
The VVD is designed to enable businesses to more rapid and easier route to SDDC.
This is the not the same as the objective of the VCDX. Personally, I would gain knowledge of the VVD, take it as another resource to aid in helping to write a VCDX level design documentation set.
I would not use it as boilerplate or use it as a justification in a VCDX design. It could be the same as copying someone elses design without displaying real knowledge of the subject.
Some Useful Links
- Blog announcement for VVD 4.3
- VVD Documentation download
- Official Poster
- VVD Diagrams in Visio Format
- VVD Visio Stencils
Recommended VMworld 2018 Videos to review.