Goodbye Proact, Hello SovLabs

My time at Proact has come to an end. After a little over 3 years working for Proact in Denmark as a Cloud Architect, I decided to move on. As part of my time at Proact I have been part of several internal projects. Building the Proact Hybrid Cloud (PHC), designing & running a large Veeam Backup environment handling backup of the PHC and designing & running a Veeam Cloud Connect offering.
Besides the internal projects, I have of course also been involved with a lot of customers, primarily providing my expertise on vRealize Automation, vRealize Orchestrator or Veeam projects.

I have been fortunate enough to get to work on some very exciting and special customer projects.

Building a vRealize Automation platform for the Central Bank of Denmark, which required custom integration with several other pieces of enterprise software as well as integration with 7 different security-zones/domains, and all this accessible from the same blueprint in the vRealize Automation interface.

Working on a large vRealize Orchestrator project for Nordea, designing, developing and implementing a set of vRealize Orchestrator servers to automate the custom settings for ESXi Host in their very large vSphere environment (I believe they are in Top-50 or so in the World). The workflows pulled current setting from ESXi Hosts, injected this data into vRealize Operations. vRealize Operations then generated alarms in case of mismatch compared to unique baseline for each “sub-environment”. Once a operator accepted the alarm in vRealize Operations, a SNMP trap was triggered, resulting in vRealize Orchestrator automatically remediating the problematic ESXi Host, making it complaint again.

For a couple of months I worked with SimCorp implementing a vRealize Automation and vRealize Orchestrator project, to handle deployment of their demo/training labs for their finical software-stack. This required daily refreshes of the templates used by the vRealize Automation blueprints, custom manipulation of the software-stack during deployment, as well as vCNS integration to configure specific firewall rules so each deployed demo/training lab could be reached.

One of the last customer projects I worked on was a bit weird. It was for a Norwegian defence contractor. And they had very tight security and access rules. So I was officially not allow to know the customer name, I was not allowed to look at/access/touch any system or computer at their facility, and I could of course not be granted a VPN access. Yet my assignment was to install vRealize Automation, provide a few blueprints and in vRealize Orchestrator code 5 integrations to be used during deployment of the blueprints. This required I build a lab to mimic their environment and the software I needed to do integration against. Then walking a Norwegian colleague (who as allowed to access the customer systems) of mine though the installation and configuration of vRealize Automation over the phone and then providing him with a very carefully crafted vRealize Orchestrator package. By importing this package, my colleague only needed to configure something like 20 settings in vRealize Orchestrator (endpoint URLs, credentials etc.) and then the environment worked more or less on the first try.

But all this is now behind me, as I had my last day at Proact this Friday (June 29th 2018).

Tomorrow (Monday July 2nd 2018) I am starting as a Senior Cloud Automation Consultant for SovLabs. I will be the very first employee outside of USA. As SovLabs is still a pretty young company, and I am the only employee in EU, my role will be a somewhat “jack-of-all-trades” kind of thing. I will assist in the sale of SovLabs Extensibility Modules for vRealize Automation, implementation of the software either remotely or onsite, and I will support and assist customers if any issues arise after the implementation is done.