vRetreat 2018


I was lucky enough to be invited to the vRetreat 2018 event this year, this event is organised by Patrick Redknap and can I say what a very well organized event it was. The location of the event this year was held in little old London Town in no other place than the “The Crypt on the Green” followed by a team adventure in “The Crystal Maze”.



This event is designed to bring together “Bloggers” and “technology evangelists” reviewing vendor presentations on some cool, new technology with some added adventure. Attending the event this year were the following “bloggers” and “Tech Evangelists” – Michael Poore, Ather Beg, Barry Coombs, Kyle Jenner, Kyle Davies, Louise Eddy, Gijsbert Janssen van Doorn, Maikel Kelder and myself.










The day started extremely well with a swift train from the “North East” to “London”, where I promptly made my way across town to “The crypt on the Green” for an 11am meet and greet. On the day there were two vendors presenting Zerto and Cohesity, as I’m very keen on both these products I was very excited to see what new developments have been added to the products and how we can utilize these going forward.



At this point I’d like to point out that the following comments and statements are mine and mine alone, I was not paid to attend this event and as such the attendance of this event was seen as a great honor and a pleasure.


The first session of the day was from Zerto – Gijsbert Janssen van Doorn – Technology Evangelist.

This session covered what’s new in latest release of Zerto 6.0 released on February 6, 2018. (This session will be covered in another blog post in greater detail)


Next we had lunch which was a short walk from the event in a vibrant Artisan Bar on St John Street “Barsmith”, the food was excellent we had a variety of nibbles and Pizza from menu, Patrick may have ordered enough to feed the entire restaurant twice over, however this may have been a game plan for the last event of the day.

Next up we had a session from Cohesity – Maikel Kelder – Senior System Engineer

Cohesity is a hyper-converged storage vendor, who’s main focus is on secondary storage, providing scale-out architecture building a true Software-Defined Data Center. Cohesity is engineered for the enterprise and is a multi-hypervisor, multi-protocol platform that is more than just a backup product. Cohesity offers global deduplication, inline compression, utilising snap-tree technology. Check out their product details online.


The next stage of the Day was an adventure all of its own in “The Crystal Maze Live Experience”, we made our way to the event and upon arrival we were split into two “Very Competitive” Teams

Team 1 – Patrick Redknap, Louise Eddy, Michael Poore, Ather Beg and Barry Coombs

Team 2 – Cihan, Gijsbert Janssen van Doorn, Kyle Jenner, Kyle Davies and myself.

We named our Team “Green On The Outside Orange On The Inside” if you want an explanation on the name selection you better speak to Gijsbert. Our team captain was Patricks’s wife Cihan, with Gijsbert as vice-captain, each Zone contains challenges from the four categories below and we all had to decide on our strengths.

  • Physical – These are aimed at testing a contestants strength
  • Skill – These are aimed at testing a contestant’s dexterity and accuracy
  • Mental – These are aimed at testing a contestant’s mental and memory skills
  • Mystery – These are aimed at a contestant’s overall ability to solve a puzzle

We started off extremely well in the Medieval Zone, progressing as we went through the remaining Zones, Aztec, Industrial and finally Futuristic Zone all in all we encountered no lock-ins of forfeits and collected 8 crystals in total which gained us 40 vital seconds in the Crystal Dome.  All in all this was a magnificent experience and a great end to a very well executed and planned day. Apologies I had to dash at the end for my train back up North….














I’d like the thank Patrick Redknap for organizing such an impressive event, as always an event of this magnitude is reliant on the sponsors and without them this event would not have taken place, thankyou Zerto & Cohesity for an interesting and informative day.