Nutanix Technology Champions – 2023!

Nutanix just announced their selection of the 2023 Nutanix Technology Champions (NTC).

Once again,  I am proud to have been selected to this year’s groups of very elite and intelligent individuals. This is my 7th year in a row being part of the NTC program and I could not be more appreciative to be part of this amazing community!

I look forward to a year of collaboration and community, and the ability to return to in-person events, such as the Nutanix Global Tech Summit and Nutanix .NEXT!

Nutanix Technology Champions 2023 Applications are Open!

Nutanix is pleased to announce that applications are now open for Nutanix Technology Champions (NTC) for 2023 calendar year candidates! 🤓
* The deadline if applying is coming quickly – November 4, 2022, at midnight PST. 🕛

If you feel you have what it takes to be an expert and champion with Nutanix – including being an active community participant, a technology evangelist, and a collaborative knowledge leader – Apply Today! ✍🏻


You can reference my post from last year (2022) on becoming a 6th consecutive year member of the awesome Nutanix NTC Program! 

Good luck to all!

Nutanix Life Cycle Manager (LCM) 2.5 Released – GPU Support!

Nutanix has just released the long-awaited Life Cycle Manager (LCM) 2.5 version.

What is Nutanix LCM?

Nutanix LCM is the infrastructure framework that upgrades Nutanix software and component firmware on Nutanix cloud platforms.

Rather than manually installing one component at a time, LCM efficiently inventories and programmatically handles the deployment dependencies and order of operations for upgrades.


LCM can handle upgrades such as:

  • On Prism Element (Per Cluster) – LCM supports AOS, AHV, Prism, Files, Foundation, and component firmware.
  • On Prism Central/Nutanix Cloud Manager (Centralized Management) – LCM supports the native Nutanix offerings for PC/NCM. such as Files, Objects, Karbon, and Calm.
  • Hardware vendor-specific firmware upgrades for appliances from Nutanix (NX), Lenovo, HPE, Fujitsu, Dell, Inspur and Intel.../images/TN-2122-Nutanix-Upgrades_image2.png

For a good read on “How Upgrades Work at Nutanix”, please refer to this link to understand possible implications to downtime (spoiler alert: None! 😯), performance impacts, order and compatibility –

On September 21, 2022, Nutanix release Life Cycle Manager Version 2.5. 🥳
– Release Notes –

In addition to dozens of fixed and improved issues, Nutanix introduced a New Feature that should make the VDI/EUC community jump for joy: 😎

GPU support
LCM 2.5 adds inventory and update support for NVIDIA GRID drivers for GPU cards. For details on using LCM with NVIDIA GRID drivers, see the Life Cycle Manager Guide.

Upgrading NVIDIA GRID drivers traditionally required a very delicate upgrade process, ensuring that the guest and host driver were compatible. Then, complex CLI commands were required to upgrade the AHV host driver, one host at a time.

Not any longer! Now, LCM 2.5 will – in a single reboot – auto-uninstall the old driver, install the new driver, all while vGPU VMs are transparently live migrated to other nodes during the upgrade process.

No user downtime ✅
Automation and operational efficiency ✅

Here is the NEW way to update your Nutanix AHV Host NVIDIA GRID Drivers:

  1. Customers should download the vGPU AHV host driver bundle from the Nutanix Portal
    *Manually downloading drivers from NVIDIA is still required for EULA compliance reasons.
  2. Upload the NVIDIA bundle via Direct Uploads on each Nutanix Cluster where AHV GPU host drivers are required.
  3. Perform an LCM inventory and proceed

Much better!


Cohesity Partner Beat 4/14 – Swag Bag!

Being a Cohesity Partner has a number of benefits.

  • The ability to size, scope, sell, and support Cohesity infrastructure!
  • The opportunity to sell innovative Hyperconverged and Software-defined solutions to customers including Next-Generation, Enterprise Backup, Files & Objects storage, Disaster Recovery, Data Security & Governance, and more!

Also, the Cohesity Marketing team is top-notch! 🙌🏻
🗣 A big shout out to Debbie Gililland, Patty Crowell and Shelly Pippin!

Every month, the team has been leading two Cohesity Partner Beats session – one sales and one technical. The team delivers timely, relevant news that enables our organization to stay sharp on Cohesity offerings.

On April 14th, the team led a great session, delivering a sneak peek into Cohesity FortKnox – a Data Management as a Service (DMaaS) offering. FortKnox is a SaaS data isolation and recovery solution that improves cyber resiliency in the case of a ransomware attack or other data disaster.

Thank you to the Cohesity Partner team for the wonderful insight during these sessions and specifically for the awesome Cohesity Swag Bag I won as a result of attending this session. The drawstring bag, pen, water bottle and socks have already been put to great use. Now, I just need to muster up the chutzpah to wear the fanny pack 🤪



Cohesity Partner Beat - 4/14

Nutanix University – Free Certification Voucher!

Are you interested in learning, or learning more about #Nutanix? 👍🏼
Looking to get #Nutanix #Certified – NCA, NCP, NCM? 👨🏻‍🎓
How about a #FREE #Certification? 🤑


nca badgencp-mci badgencm-mci badge

Well here ya go!

Once you’re ready to take your exam, just enter the voucher code when you register – [ NTXRF22D ]

How Hyperconvered Infrastruture Works

This limited time offer:

  • is limited to 1 use per candidate
  • must be registered by May 15th
  • certification exam taken by June 15th!

As part of the 2022 class of the Nutanix Technology Champions – and 6th year returning Champion, I am excited to give back to the technology community and present to you a voucher (Value of $99-$199) for joining other knowledge leaders around Hybrid Cloud! 

What are you waiting for? 🤔
What do you have to lose? 🤷🏻‍♂️ 🤷🏻‍♀️

Start now, here🧑🏾‍💻 🕵🏻 – 

#hyperconvergence #sysadmin #training #nutanixpartners #cloud #vdi #hyperconverged #legalit #devops #nextconf


Nutanix Technology Champions – 2022!

Last week, Nutanix announced their selection of the 2022 Nutanix Technology Champions.

I am very happy and proud to have been selected, again, to this year’s groups of elite individuals. This is my 6th year in a row being part of the NTC program and I could not be more proud to be part of this amazing community!

Nutanix NTC – This program recognizes Nutanix hybrid multi-cloud experts for their ongoing and consistent external contributions to the community and industry. Nutanix Technology Champions are our advocates and technology ambassadors who influence change with practical advice and bold ideas. The NTC program provides unique opportunities to expand their knowledge further, amplify their brand, and help shape the future of the hybrid multi-cloud. ☁️

Congratulations to all of those who were admitted into the 2022 NTC program! 🎉

…And, as this is an ‘each one, reach one‘ community – for those interested in pursuing this journey for 2023 – please do not hesitate to reach out to me! 🗣

Thank you to Angelo Luciani and the rest of the Nutanix team who makes this great community possible. 🙏🏻

Nutanix Global Tech Summit 2020

It is difficult to put into words what I just experienced…again. I just returned from a 4-day whirlwind conference, surrounded by some of the most talented technical minds I have had the privilege of spending time with. This is my second consecutive year of having the honor of being welcomed to the Nutanix Global Tech Summit conference.

What used to be an internal, engineer-only event was opened last year to strategic Nutanix partners. This year, with the abundance of new engineering hires and involvement of other Nutanix employees (CSM, TME, and many other acronyms), it was massive in comparison. At nearly 1,000 strong – this was an incredible event to be a part of.

The conference itself was a great mixture of time spent bonding with Nutanix engineers, product managers, directors and VPs. And, as I mentioned above – partners. Yes, the same partners that I and Helient Systems may compete with on a daily basis, both in my territory and in other geographies. But, it is a massive world, with billions of dollars of opportunity out there.

What I came here for is to learn the ins and outs of every Nutanix product — past, present and future 👀. I never want to sell a ‘product.’

I want to sell solutions.

My goal when working with customers is to help understand your organizational business and technical needs and ensure there is a solution that will compliment those goals.

Riiiiight says the industry. Nutanix is a just a hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) replacement for your traditional 3-Tier Server and Storage.

Sure…it was…in 2011. Then 4 years later, Nutanix AHV released, giving customer’s choice at the hypervisor layer. So what did the last 4 years bring? This blog post would scroll nearly indefinitely trying to list all of the released features and capabilities. Shout out to Jake Tame for taking care of this already – Nutanix AOS / Product Release Timeline.

Today, we’re here – offering solutions for more than just HCI – Objects, Databases, Application Orchestraction and Automation, EUC/VDI Solutions, Disaster Recovery, Public Cloud cost control and security elimination, and more.

Products Ecosystem - Hybrid Cloud

Where do things go from here? Let me share with you everything that was revealed this week at Nutanix GTS 2020…

Image result for blurred text

Sorry…I’m under a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) – 🤫- but let me tell you this — the roadmap is unbelievable. The concept of One-Click did not originate with marketing. This is real stuff!

Deployments, upgrades, conversions, provisioning, cloning, migrations, automation, isolation, quarantine, security, backups, failover, private cloud, public cloud – all able to be performed at the server or database level. 😲

If you have followed recent news around Tesla, another disrupter in their own industry, you would have read the headlines indicating Tesla is years ahead of the competition.

The sheer amount of intelligence, innovation, and forward-thinking capacity put into the Nutanix solution(s) is incredible. What is about to be announced in the upcoming weeks, months, and years will continue to shape the evolution of IT infrastructure as we know it.

🗣️🗣️ A big shout out to all of the people I was able to spend some quality time with this week. And, a big thank you for your commitment to what you do. 🙏 

Zoom Outlook Plugin for Mac

I had been using Outlook 2016 for Mac for a pretty long while. Then, one day, out of frustration of not having feature parity with Outlook 2016 on Windows, I spun up Parallels and begun working within my Windows 10 environment for the past year.

Recently, after a long weekend of ‘disconnecting’ and keeping the Windows environment powered down, I decided to give Outlook 2016 for Mac a chance again. Don’t get me wrong, there is still not feature parity between Outlook 2016 on Mac and Windows, but I’ll deal…for now.

On the plus side, the CPUs ran a LOT less hot, and battery life was much improved. Yeah!

Then, I encountered a problem that was a first world problem, but nonetheless, annoying…

While creating a meeting invitation and adding in a Zoom Meeting, using the Zoom Plugin for Outlook, the contents of the Zoom meeting invite would be pasted in the email … at the bottom of the thread … not at the top.

Yup, #FirstWorldProblems

Nonetheless, I was told by support to simply check the box within settings called “Insert Zoom meeting invitation above existing text”

However, my client (the latest version 4.7.55397.0718) was not showing this option?!?

This was easy – see the “Save and do not show again?”

Simply uncheck that option, select Continue, and then go back into settings and voila! the option is there!

Hopefully this helps someone else who gets annoyed by the little things 😃

Zoom! Zoom!

Migrations to Nutanix Enterprise Cloud Made Easy with Xtract for VMs & DBs

October 10, 2017 – At the Nutanix .NEXT 2017 conference (North America), Nutanix announced a tool that would simplify Virtual Machine (VM) and database migrations to a Nutanix private cloud.

Today, Nutanix has publicly released those tools – known as Nutanix Xtract for VMs & Nutanix for DBs.

Up until today, cross-hypervisor VM migrations were possible via a multi-step approach such as:

  1. File-system whitelisting of Nutanix Storage
  2. Mount the AHV container as an NFS datastore to vSphere
  3. Storage vMotioning VM(s)
  4. Convert VM disks to AHV by importing into the Image Configuration Service
  5. Create new AHV VM and attach imported Windows disk to the VM

Today, Nutanix Xtract for VMs allows for agentless live-migration of Virtual Machines from VMware ESXi to Acropolis AHV – with minimal downtime.

  • Streamlined migrations with one-click simplicity
  • Near-zero downtime with full cutover control
  • Simple test migrations and roll-back capabilities
  • Cost efficient – included with all Nutanix software editions

In keeping with the Nutanix release cycle, today is another day of innovation — for you, the customer, at no additional cost.



  • More efficient
  • Less impactful
  • Automated
  • And, no cost! 🤑

Nutanix Xtract for VMs has the following functionality upon the v1.0 GA release:

  • Migrate powered on or powered off VMs
  • Pause and resume migration
  • Schedule migration
  • Schedule data-seeding for the virtual machines in advance and cut over to a new AHV cluster
  • Manage VM migration between multiple clusters from a single management interface
  • Sort and group VMs for easy migration
  • Monitor details of migration plan execution even at the individual VM level
  • Cancel in-progress migration for individual VMs
  • Migrate all AHV certified OSes

So… starting today – you, the customer, can now migrate your Guest OSes supported by AHV from vCenter and ESXi 5.5, 6.0, and 6.5 to Acropolis AOS 5.0.x and 5.1.x.

There are a few Unsupported Features that you should note, but otherwise — in so few words…

  1. Select your VMs
    – Map ESXi port group to AHV target network
    – Schedule time for migration to complete
  2. Grab your beverage of choice and wait for a periodic sync to destination
  3. Perform final cutover/migration of VM

Upon final cutover, the source VM is shutdown and the target VM is brought up live on Nutanix AHV.

Nutanix Xtract Software can be downloaded within the Nutanix portal site: 

Stay tuned for a video showing the entire conversion process.

Say goodbye to your #vTax!


Removing Nutanix AHV Acropolis HotPlug Devices

Virtualizing servers and applications is nothing new, and is often considered common practice these days. More and more Tier 1 applications – Domain Controllers, Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft SQL Server, and VDI Desktops – are provisioned as Virtual Machines, due to their ability to be agile and highly available. With continued advancements at the hypervisor and storage levels – including VM high availability, distributed/dynamic scheduling, and scale-out, shared-nothing architectures, infrastructure is much more resilient than ever. However, human error is still a VERY common factor in many unplanned outages. Out of the box, Microsoft Windows desktop and server OSes allow any user the ability to eject various HotPlug devices, which could lead to a server or desktop being immediately disconnected and unavailable.

The Windows feature to ‘Safely Remove Hardware and Eject Media’ sounds good in theory, say to eject a USB drive from the operating system. Thanks to Windows Search Index, the OS will often prevent you doing something really bad, such as ejecting a virtualized SCSI attached disk. Nonetheless, ejecting a virtualized network adapter of a production VM seems like a great way to ruin your day.

Now, yes, you can set a Microsoft Group Policy Object to limit the users and groups who are allowed to eject removable devices.

GPO_Name\Computer Configuration\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\Security Options

Screen Shot 2016-08-12 at 10.06.46 AM

This STILL does not prevent an administrator (you know, the ones often working on servers) from accidentally clicking the wrong icon.

Well-respect consultant and developer Helge Klein released a great (and frequently referenced!) post in 2012, detailing the ability to disable HotPlug functionality in VMware ESX – both at the hypervisor level, along within the Windows Guest OS.


Since the publishing of Helge’s article, additional hypervisors have been released and adopted in the marketplace. Nutanix may have started the explosion on the scene as a storage disruptor, while making traditional three-tier architecture obsolete. In doing so, Nutanix still allowed a choice of industry standard hypervisors, VMware ESX or Microsoft Hyper-V, to run on top of their commodity hardware. But Nutanix did not stop at simply disrupting the storage market, they wanted to ensure a practice known as ‘Invisible Infrastructure for Enterprise Computing.’ In theory – the storage shouldn’t matter, the hypervisor shouldn’t matter – IT should be a transparent and turnkey solution that focuses on applications and on the business. At .NEXT, Nutanix’s first user conference in June 2015, another disruptive announcement was dropped – Nutanix would release their own hypervisor entitled Acropolis (AHV), based on Linux KVM. Only 1 year later at .NEXT 2016, Nutanix is now reporting 15% of all deployed clusters are running AHV for client workloads.

Placing key infrastructure workloads on Acropolis, such as Microsoft Exchange, SQL, and Citrix XenDesktop, and VMware View are vendor supported (and recommended, if I must say so myself) AND yield an incredible ROI to the business. However, proper precautions need to be addressed to ensure users or administrators cannot accidentally eject virtualized hardware.

Windows VMs running on AHV will have 3 HotPlug devices within the guest OS

  • Nutanix VirtIO Ethernet Adapter
  • Nutanix VirtIO Balloon Driver
  • Nutanix VirtIO SCSI pass-through controller
    Screen Shot 2016-07-14 at 11.41.36 AM


Currently on Nutanix Acropolis, there is no supported way to disable HotPlug functionality at the hypervisor level. I have confirmed with Nutanix support and engineering that this is not something that is currently publicly exposed.

Currently, the best approach to disabling HotPlug devices within the guest OS would be to disable functionality from within the registry by changing flags on the ‘Capabilities’ key, based on each device within HKLM\SYSTEM\CCS\Enum\PCI.

A few notes regarding these changes:

  • Security permissions for all keys under ‘HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\PCI’ are protected so that only the SYSTEM account has Full Control.
    PCI Permissions
  • You could create a workaround by launching Regedit.exe as the SYSTEM account, leveraging a tool like Systernals PSExec (Owned by Microsoft)
    • Command Prompt – cmd.exe – Run as Administrator
      > psexec -i -d -s c:\windows\regedit.exe

However, due to these keys being reverted upon machine restart, the best way to achieve this functionality is either via a computer startup script or Group Policy Preference registry keys – both which run under the SYSTEM account – and applied at computer boot.

Deployment – GPP

The simple and repeatable way to deploy these registry is using Group Policy Preference registry itemsScreen Shot 2016-08-10 at 11.10.03 AM

Update the REG_DWORD value of the Capabilities key to decimal value of (2) for the following keys:


Deployment – Startup Script

Alternatively, the following script can be saved as a batch file and dropped into a GPO applied to your VMs.

 :: Disable Eject Nutanix VirtIO Ethernet Adapter (Win 10)
 :: Disable Eject Midfin Systems eFabric Network Adapter (W2K12 R2)
 :: Original value: 6
 reg.exe add "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\PCI\VEN_1AF4&DEV_1000&SUBSYS_00011AF4&REV_00\3&13c0b0c5&0&18" /v Capabilities /t REG_DWORD /d 2 /f

 :: Disable Eject Nutanix VirtIO Balloon Driver (Win 10)
 :: Disable Eject PCI Device (W2K12 R2)
 :: Original value: 6
 reg.exe add "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\PCI\VEN_1AF4&DEV_1002&SUBSYS_00051AF4&REV_00\3&13c0b0c5&0&28" /v Capabilities /t REG_DWORD /d 2 /f

 :: Disable Eject Nutanix VirtIO SCSI pass-through controller (Win 10 & W2K12 R2)
 :: Original value: 6
 reg.exe add "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\PCI\VEN_1AF4&DEV_1004&SUBSYS_00081AF4&REV_00\3&13c0b0c5&0&20" /v Capabilities /t REG_DWORD /d 2 /f

Whichever methodology you choose – following this change, the HotPlug functionality of the Nutanix VirtIO devices should be removed – making users and admins sleep a little easier at night!