Learn about vSphere with Tanzu at VMworld 2020

[Update: Some of the links have changed or are no longer available due to changes at VMworld.com]

On September 15th, 2020 VMware announced vSphere 7 Update 1. With this release came the announcement of vSphere with Tanzu. vSphere with Tanzu introduces the ability to run Kubernetes workloads on vSphere Enterprise Plus without having to run the full VMware Cloud Foundation Stack. Networking is accomplished using vSphere Distributed Switches and a Load Balancer virtual machine.

Now, like many vSphere admins, there’s a LOT to learn! And in looking over the list of sessions that VMworld 2020 is bringing to the table combined with a virtualized VMworld where you get all of the sessions online and in an order of your choosing, I pulled together a number of tracks that you can take in an order that will help you get the most from each session.

Beginner Track

The first up is the Beginner Track. If you are wondering “Where do I start?” or “Why is Kubernetes a ‘thing’?” or even “What is Kubernetes and Containers?” then this is the place to go.

Beginner Track
Beginner Track

This track starts you out right from the beginning with Scottie Ray’s KUB1888 and Marc Alumbaugh’s KUB2621 setting the foundation for the rest of the track. Following that are my session, KUB2161 followed immediately by Kenny Coleman’s KUB2191. The rest of the sessions are all awesome. You’ll see there’s a separate “Storage for vSphere with Tanzu” mini-track as well.

Link on VMworld.com TITLE
KUB1888 Cloud Native Fundamentals: Containers and Kubernetes 101 for the VI Admin
KUB2038 How to Become a Kubernetes Admin from the Comfort of Your vSphere
KUB2162 vSphere with Tanzu 101 for the vSphere Admin
KUB2191 Using Tanzu Kubernetes Grid to Deploy Kubernetes with Ease
KUB2621 Getting Started with vSphere with Tanzu and Tanzu Kubernetes Grid
HCI2160 Technical Deep Dive on Cloud Native Storage for vSphere
HCI2514 What’s New in CNS in vSphere 7 (GA and U1)
HCI2540 Data Management for Kubernetes and Modern Applications on VMware
HCP1501 Automation and Operations for Your Tanzu Infrastructure with vRealize

Deep Dive Track

Next up is the Deep Dive Track, the track many of you have been waiting for!

Deep Dive Track
Deep Dive Track

This track does not disappoint! Product Manager Bo Fu will do a Deep Dive on vSphere with Tanzu.

Two can’t miss sessions from my Tech Marketing colleagues Myles Gray and Michael West follow. Myles will explore Cloud Native Storage in vSphere while Michael will lead you through step by step with deploying vSphere with Tanzu. Michael will go through how to set up networking with vSphere with Tanzu and vDS switches and HAProxy load balancer. Honestly, all these sessions are fantastic!

Next up is a great session from Vinay on an introduction to NSX networking when used with vSphere and Tanzu. If you’re an NSX customer or considering moving to NSX this is a great session to watch!

Are you working on or interested in AI or Machine Learning? Are you also wondering how Kubernetes fits into this space? Look no further. My colleague Justin Murray from Tech Marketing and Enrique Corro, a Staff Engineer in the Data Science group, will be talking about using Apache Spark with vSphere with Tanzu. And just because he wants to prove he’s not slacking off; Justin has another very cool session with Jeff Bean from Confluent on deploying Kafka on vSphere with Tanzu using Confluent Operator. Can SkyNet be far behind?

Link on VMworld.com TITLE
KUB2323 xPerf Series: vSphere with Tanzu Performance Deep Dive
KUB2469 vSphere with Tanzu Deep Dive
KUB2594 vSphere with Tanzu:  Deep Dive into Deployment and Management
HCI2160 Technical Deep Dive on Cloud Native Storage for vSphere
HCI2181 How VMware Cloud Foundation Enables Success with vSphere with Tanzu
HCP1167 Deploying Kafka on vSphere with Tanzu Using Confluent Operator
HCP1266 Using Kubernetes and vSphere Bitfusion for ML Workloads
HCP1435 Operationalize Traditional and Modern Apps with VMware Cloud Foundation 4
HCP1545 Modernize & optimize ML/AI/HPC applications with vSphere Tanzu
HCP2097 Simplify and Boost Apache Spark with vSphere with Tanzu

Business Track

As I went through the list of Kubernetes/vSphere with Tanzu focused sessions I thought I’d add a couple of other sessions that I thought were more business focused.

Business Track

The first is a discussion led by Robbie Jerrom of VMware speaking with Philip Buckley-Mellor of British Telecom. They will be discussing BT’s adoption of VCF and how it’s helping them bridge between legacy and modern applications without having to rip and replace their infrastructure. Watch this session to see a great forward-looking VMware customer in action!

Finally, Birds of a Feather. I, along with some of my friends in the vSphere with Tanzu space will be hosting a BoF focused on “Where do I start?” We’ll be there to answer questions or point you in the right direction. Come join me, especially the session at 5am EDT on Thursday Oct 1st where I’ll be in dire need of some caffeine!

Link on VMworld.com TITLE
KUB2153 Why vSphere and Kubernetes Just Make Sense
KUB2784 Live – Expert Roundtable: Ask Your Kubernetes on vSphere questions with Kendrick Coleman & Mike Foley

Updated with Links

Thanks to David Kemper Lee, I’ve added a list of links to all the track sessions! You’ll have to click through to the “On-Demand” tab once you sign in. Thanks David! Great team effort!

Wrap Up

I hope this has been helpful. Because VMworld is all recorded you can enjoy these sessions in order and hopefully get even more out of them. I wish we were all getting together but here’s to that happening in 2021!

If you have any ideas on vSphere with Tanzu topics that you’d like to learn more about from a vSphere Administrator standpoint then please reach out to me on Twitter. I’m @mikefoley and my DM’s are open.



We are excited about these new releases and how vSphere is always improving to serve our customers and workloads better in the hybrid cloud. We will continue posting new technical and product information about vSphere with Tanzu & vSphere 7 Update 1 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays through the end of October 2020! Join us by following the blog directly using the RSS feed, on Facebook, and on Twitter, and by visiting our YouTube channel which has new videos about vSphere 7 Update 1, too. As always, thank you, and please stay safe.