VMWorld 2008, Las Vegas. As I stand in line, at least 200 people deep to get on an escalator to take me to the fourth floor of the Sands Expo Center for my next session, I am amazed at the crowd here at VMWorld. This is my fourth one, and I have seen it grow from 3500 at Mandalay Bay to the current estimate at over 14,000 attendees. I finally get on the escalator and say something like ” I can’t believe there are so many people here”. The guy behind me calmly says “Yeah. If a bomb went off here, everything around the world would stop. There would be nobody left to keep the servers running.”

While it was funny and everyone around us laughed, it had a ring of truth to it. Virtualization has become so pervasive in the IT space now that we have come to rely on it in almost every aspect of our datacenter. A full 100% of the Fortune 100 are using VMware in production, and 98% of the Fortune 500 use their products. With all of the top engineers in the field in one place, a disaster would surely cripple IT innovation for years to come.

Aside from that grim concept, the conference has been fantastic. With the new announcements surrounding vStorage, vNetworks, and the vCloud initiative, it is obvious to all that VMware is not sitting back and enjoying their lead in the Virtualization space. Every time their competitors start getting closer to what they are doing, they take a huge leap ahead and push virtualization to new heights. I am amazed every year that they continue to innovate, and look forward to getting my hands on the new technology.