Author Archives: David vonThenen

Let’s have a Conversation!

Hello! How are you doing? It’s been a while since we last chatted. Since you’re stopping by, you might notice immediately that I revived my blog (obviously). I took a break from it for a good couple of years while COVID did its thing; it made sense since we were locked indoors, unable to attend meetups, conferences, or events. Unfortunately, it seems like I did lose a couple of blog posts leading up to the shutdown, which I thought I had backup, but here we are. It’s all good… It’s just great that I can talk with you again!

Welcome back

What’s new with me, you ask? Well, as I started to get back into the open source world again by attending meetups and conferences, I even had an opportunity to speak at a pre-conference event during KubeCon Europe 2022 about Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery systems. I had a chance to be a part of an incredible team that created a Kubernetes distribution from scratch and was well received.

But… change was brewing at VMware and I found myself taking a new and exciting opportunity with a great and sharp group of people at Symbl. What is Symbl? Symbl is a rapidly maturing startup focused on the Conversation Intelligence space providing a platform to help other developers integrate conversational context into their applications and services via APIs. If you’re interested in learning more, watch this presentation below by our CEO and co-founder, Surbhi Rathore.

I have enjoyed my time working on application infrastructure, Kubernetes, containers, and everything virtualization, but this is a welcome change for me. Throughout my career, I have always taken on bold, engaging, and areas in technology that represent the unknown to me. This definitely qualifies. Conversation Intelligence is exponentially growing, and we are just scratching the surface in terms of its potential applications and what new features all of us can dream up.

Sky is the limit

If you’re interested in learning more, I will invite you to visit and read through my first blog post at Symbl. The blog is the first in a series that details my perspective as a new developer in the Conversation Intelligence ecosystem who is learning how to bootstrap themselves to become a power user. I aim to become a force multiplier who helps others in their journey to make their application and services conversation aware.

Like what you hear, follow me on Twitter at @dvonthenen to keep up to date on my adventures. I hope to see you out there!

YAKB: Running Kubernetes on Your Laptop

Hi there! Yes, it’s been a while since I have posted to my personal blog. Before I get to my post, I thought I would just bring you up to speed with what’s been going on in my world since my last post. So I no longer work at Dell EMC. I also no longer work at Dell Technologies. After transfer upon transfer, I currently work at VMware. The change has been going good so far especially moving from companies that are traditionally hardware based to a company that is mostly software focused. While I have only been at VMware since March of this year, the momentum in the Kubernetes and CNCF communities and VMware’s commitment to those communities has made VMware an obvious choice going forward. Which leads me to this blog post…

Let’s get to the Blog!

So I am writing this “Yet Another Kubernetes Blog” post because I needed to document how someone can run Kubernetes on their laptop so that fellow future session attendees can follow along with future presentations that I might give. If this never gets used in one of my presentations, that’s cool… but I thought, hey why not just put this out here so that others might benefit from this. You could potentially use this blog post to just test drive Kubernetes and play around with its functionality.

NOTE: If you are running on Windows, well you might want to install something like VMware Workstation Pro so that you can get a RHEL7 VM running on your laptop. I believe you can try it for 30 days.

Installing Virtual Box

To simplify the installation among the two platforms, we are going to need to install Virtual Box (5.2 is recommended). To do that visit the Virtual Box Homepage, then download the installation package based on your platform.

On MAC, just download the DMG file and install Virtual Box like any other application on your MAC.

On RHEL7, download the appropriate RPM and then install using the following command:

sudo rpm -ivh 

Installing kubectl

Next, we need to install kubectl which is the Kubernetes command line tool to manage a Kubernetes cluster. You will be using this utility for the majority (if not all) of the operations to view what’s going on in your cluster to kicking off applications in your cluster. Fortunately, installation of this component is pretty straightforward.

On MAC, you can run the following command:

curl -LO$(curl -s && chmod +x kubectl && sudo mv kubectl /usr/local/bin/

On RHEL7, you can run the following command:

curl -LO$(curl -s && chmod +x kubectl && sudo mv kubectl /usr/local/bin/

You can verify that kubectl is installed correctly by running the following command: kubectl help. Let’s move onto the last component minikube.

Installing minikube

So minikube is a simple tool that allows you to quickly deploy a single node Kubernetes cluster on your laptop/computer. We are going to be using that for demonstration purposes and to kick the tires on Kubernetes. You can install minikube by doing the following:

On MAC, you can run the following commands:

curl -Lo minikube && chmod +x minikube && sudo mv minikube /usr/local/bin/

minikube config set memory 4096
minikube config set cpus 2

On RHEL7, you can run the following commands:

curl -Lo minikube && chmod +x minikube && sudo mv minikube /usr/local/bin/

minikube config set memory 4096
minikube config set cpus 2

RHEL7 NOTE: If you see the following error (I did not during my install, but it has been reported to happen sometimes):

Could not read CA certificate "/etc/docker/ca.pem": open /etc/docker/ca.pem: no such file or directory

The fix is to update /etc/sysconfig/docker to ensure that minikube’s environment changes are respected:

< DOCKER_CERT_PATH=/etc/docker
> if [ -z "${DOCKER_CERT_PATH}" ]; then
>   DOCKER_CERT_PATH=/etc/docker
> fi

You can verify that minikube is installed correctly by running the following command: minikube version. Pretty simple!

I want a Kubernetes!

So now that you have all the associated software installed on your laptop, let’s bring up a Kubernetes cluster!

On MAC and RHEL7, run the following command:

minikube start

To make sure you can access your Kubernetes cluster, run the following command:

kubectl get pods --all-namespaces

To stop and delete your cluster, run the following command:

minikube stop


Well, there it is! A simple way to get a Kubernetes cluster running on your laptop without requiring a public cloud account or a ton of hardware sitting in a lab or datacenter somewhere. This by far isn’t a magic bullet and it only good for running small light-weight applications. If anything, it’s a simple way to familiarize yourself with Kubernetes and general management of the cluster.

I plan on posting to my blog more often now… so stay tuned on some cool future blog posts! If you have any suggestions on topics you want to hear more on, please let me know! I am interested in everything from intro-101-type blogs to deep-dives. Just drop me a line!

Dell EMC World 2017 – Las Vegas, NV

It looks like that time of year again as we are just days away from Dell EMC World 2017. The {code} team will once again be in attendance and presenting some interesting sessions (16 in total), a Hands-On Lab (ran through it myself and it’s great!), and various materials at the show. The buffet (Yes, we are in Vegas after all!) of information we have lined up is pretty dang awesome! You can find more information about the stuff {code} has going on in our official {code} at Dell EMC World page.

Demos, Demos, Demos

What I wanted to talk about today were the two sessions that I will be presenting at Dell EMC World. The first session called Demos Demos Demos! Containers & {code} is happening on Wednesday, May 10 at 1:30 PM in room Zeno 4602. I will be co-presenting with Travis Rhoden and Vladimir Vivien. Just like the title says this session will have a few slides to set up what is going on and talk about who we are… then it’s nothing but live demos. I think this will be a pretty amazing session that captures what is hot in the container and scheduler space but at the same time, will give you some practical and real-world information to take home with you. Definitely, check this out!

ScaleIO Framework

The second session I will be presenting solo. It’s called Managing ScaleIO As Software On Mesos and is occurring on Thursday, May 11 at 11:30 AM in room Zeno 4602. I floated this idea last year during a session at (the then) EMC World 2016 where I thought it would be cool to be able to treat storage just as another piece of software. Well now its one year later and that idea is a reality now and we are going to talk about and demonstrate the ScaleIO Framework in this session. Many other container schedulers have implementations of this pattern and this concept will change the way how we consume software in the future.

Have fun, but not too much fun!

If you are heading down to Dell EMC World this year, stop by the sessions the {code} team will be presenting at and if you have any questions, feel free to linger around after the presentations to chat. I think this is going to be an awesome conference, do check out some of the social networking opportunities available to connect with some new people, and as always enjoy the show and have fun (but not too much… it’s Vegas after all)!