VMworld 2019: VMware hackathon experience

The Ansible Team!
The Ansible Team

Ever since they announced VMware Hackathon 4 years ago – I knew wanted to experience this first hand if given the opportunity! Fortunately, THAT opportunity came this VMworld 2019 thanks to vExpert Pro and VMware!

It’s been 10 years since my last VMworld and alot has changed – with content from different VMware units (more on this on another post). One of this is unit is VMware Code which hosted geek-magnet sessions including Raspberry Pi, Kubernetes, and VMware Hackathon!

What is VMware Hackathon?
From my own definition: It’s a design/ concept/ demo sprint that is done in a limited time. The objective is create something useful within a 4 hour time frame – starts 7PM and ends 11PM. You can join a team with specific subject lead by preassigned Team Leader OR create your own. You don’t need to know programming you can contribute in your own little way. The whole idea is learn and have fun doing it. At the end of time frame, the teams needs to present and the winner chosen based on the criteria that was set.

Now back to my experience, since this was my first foray, I decided to join a pre-created teams. On which team I wanted to join – there were two that I considered – one that will be doing Powershell and another doing Ansible. I’m fairly confident on my powershell and I wanted to challenge myself so I decided to join Ansible Team. Keeping with the VMworld Theme – “Make your Mark”, I’ll either make it big or go home 😛

Anyway, as the session goes, our team leader (Ariel) gave house rules and what we need to do to collaborate efficiently. The objective of the team is to create Ansiblee examples of common vSphere Tasks. The idea is to jumpstart the use of alternative ways of managing vSphere. As we all know, when it comes to vSphere automation and management – it’s always powershell. So by providing this real-world examples using ansible, this will start the ball rolling in using it.

Our team consisted of 90% no experience of using ansible. Personally – I’ve only used it for server configuration, no so much for vSphere config. With the help of the team lead, assistance from Sjors (VMware) we were able to start our first playbook. After the 2nd hour, all of us were chugging away trying to create examples – committing in git and documenting it properly.

For the presentation, I took charge and created the presentation that highlighted the objective our team wanted to achieve, the process we did to reach it and lastly, the things we learn during the exercise.

After the event – we were awarded 2nd place overall with a free Roku (yey freebies!) as an award for the team.

Would I repeat the experience? Absolutely. Interaction with random people of other background and coming-up with a product in 4 hours is an experience worth repeating.

… but of course, I need to go back VMworld first to join again which is another story all together 😛

Thanks for reading!

Our output:


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