Name: Kalen Arndt
Twitter Handle: @KalenArndt
Blog URL: www.vmrage.com
Current Employer: World Wide Technology
VCDX #: 132
How did you get into using VMware?
When I was working as a customer I had to do a rip and replace of ESX 3.5 to ESXi 4.1 with new hardware. I learned a ton about virtualization and when I first vMotioned a VM I said “Wow this is awesome and I have to work there.” I moved across the country to work for VMware where I worked commercially in networking/storage/fault support for about a year. After that I moved onto the Federal team at VMware where I was a TSE , Research Engineer, and then Escalation Engineer. I finally decided that I wanted to architect environments and I left for WWT where I implement large scale environments that leverage VMware.
What made you decide to do the VCDX?
It was a challenge! I did the same thing with my VCP and then my VCAPs for DCV and View and finally hit the point where I felt I would be comfortable defending.
How long did it take you to complete the whole VCDX journey?
I initially planned for defending for 4.1 and then 5.0 came out and I switched teams. I would say the initial 4 submission was about 6 months. After I left VMware I spent about 8 months working on getting my VCAPs and submitting my defence for 5.5
What advice would you give to people thinking of pursuing the VCDX accreditation?
Be honest and know your defence. I wrote an entire article about helpful things for future candidates can do here : http://www.vmrage.com/vcdx-dcv-overview/
If you could do the whole VCDX journey again what would you do differently?
I would have tried doing more mocks and additional proof reading of my design prior to my submission. I do plan on submitting for VCDX-DT with a totally new design from a previous implementation. So I guess you could say that I get to do over half of it over again
Life after the VCDX? How did your company respond? Was it worth it?
A lot of people followed me on Twitter now which is pretty awesome. I am currently making a huge effort to mentor future VCDXs throughout the process. We had a few mentors and it was a HUGE help to the group.
My company was extremely excited that I had obtained it.
It was worth it to me because it was goal that I set and I finally did it. I loved the product enough to uproot my life to work on it and I am glad that I mastered one of their certification tracks. I plan on advocating it even further in the future