vExpert Spotlight: Sam McGeown

Sam McGeown

Today’s vExpert Spotlight interview is with Sam McGeown. Sam is a Senior Consultant at Xtravirt in the UK. Let’s welcome Sam to the #vExpertSpotlight today! Grab a cup of your favorite caffeine fueled liquid, sit back & enjoy.

The Interview


Star Wars or Star Trek?

Star Wars

Peanut Butter?


Favorite Adult Beverage?

Dalwhinnie 15 Year Old (single malt whisky)

What was your 1st IT gig?

My first full IT gig sort of grew on me. I was working as a graphic and multimedia designer, creating press packs and interactive CDs for the launch of new cars. At some point I was asked to look web design taught myself HTML and PHP. From there I took a job as a webmaster (remember those?!) and learned C#.NET and how to manage IIS and MSSQL, which was sort of IT. Then the incumbent IT Manager at the time (my Xtravirt colleague and fellow vExpert Simon Eady @simoneady) left and I was asked to take over!

What is your current job title and role?

I am a Senior Consultant for Xtravirt, specializing in cloud automation.

How many years have you been a vExpert?

3 years

What other IT Communities are you involved with or frequent?

I’m part of the London VMUG, and have been to the UK VMUG for the last 3 years. I’m also a PernixPro, can be found contributing occasionally on GitHub and also FlowGrab.

What advice would you give to others involved in the VMware community who are looking at becoming a vExpert?

Just get involved…contribute, blog, create, participate, present.

There’s no point in doing any of those things *just* to become a vExpert – my view is that if you want to have any sort of career progression then you need to constantly be developing, not just technical skills but soft skills like presenting too. Becoming a vExpert was a great honour, but it was a side effect of the work I was putting into my career.

Do you currently have a Home Lab environment?

Yes! I have two Intel NUCs (i3, 16GB, 40GB SSD) as a management cluster, and three HP N54Ls (AMD Turion, 16GB, 40GB SSD) with some additional gigabit NICs as a resource cluster. Storage is provided by a Synology DS412+, augmented by PernixData FVP or VSAN depending on what I’m doing. Networking is provided by a Cisco SG300-20. If you’re interested, a full write up is available here:

How do you use VMware products or services in your daily work life?

My day job is delivering VMware products and services, so it’s pretty much all I do! I specialize in cloud and SDDC products like vRealize Automation, NSX, vCloud, VSAN, although I use the core products like vSphere and SRM heavily too.

What certifications do you currently hold (if any)?

VCP5, VCP-Cloud, VCP6, VCP-NV, VCAP5-DCA, VCAP5-DCD (will be defending VCDX-CMA for a second time in October) CCNA, MSCE Sec+, MCITP:EA/SA/MA

What’s your go to song or music genre when work stress becomes too much?

I don’t really get stressed – but if I need to concentrate I’ll stick on some music to match my mood. Mostly guitar driven rock. My go to song would be Foo Fighters – All my life.

Tell us something about yourself that the community may not already know.

I spent a year in bible college and have a diploma in Christian Theology.

Do you have a blog that you would like to share?

Let us know how to contact you via social media.

Twitter: @sammcgeown

Sam it was a pleasure & thank you very much for being a part of the vExpert Spotlight series! I appreciate you taking the time to chat with me.

Please hit up Sam on Twitter as well as his personal blog.

Lookup and browse the current 2015 vExperts in the vExpert Online Directory

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