First, I’d like to say that I really enjoyed this class. I learned tons about general storage concepts that I had never got around to asking about, and all things considered, was pleased with the content and delivery of the course.
Class was taught by Unitek, a training partner of Netapp. Unitek was using Vmware Workstation 5 in their classroom, an older version, but still a solid product. This is a really good idea for classrooms, especially with the Netapp Simulator, creating an ONTAP environment for students locally on their workstations. This allows students, (and admins in their own environments) to practice what needs to be done away from their expensive and often times mission critical storage systems.
What wasn’t a good idea was to have a “keygen” for VMware products on all of their workstations. I asked someone from Unitek after the class was over what the keygen was for, and his answer wasn’t that shocking; “why are you looking around the desktop anyway?”. I felt it silly at this point to explain that I was in the class that had just finished and had domain level administrative access to complete tasks in the course. I was also told that they (Unitek) had a site license for Workstation and they didn’t know why there was a keygen on all of the student workstations. I have to point out that all of the workstations had the same directory structure for the workstation installation package and keygen, although all of the workstations were using the same workstation key anyway, according to their registries. I may be wrong, but I didn’t think that VMware had an enterprise license available for Workstation 5, but irregardless, I’m also pretty sure that the group that created the keygen wasn’t VMware sponsored.
It’s bad enough to give the appearance that you’re stealing software (assuming that they did have a site license), it’s another totally different issue provide that software and a keygen openly to every student that goes through your classroom and happens to open the c: drive on a the local workstation. I made a few comments at the end of the class and provided the instructor a few different ways that they could utilize the environment to disallow students local administrative access (or access altogether) and still leverage VMware, however I don’t think that anyone (to include the tech that comes after the class is complete) was interested at that point in time.
I’d gladly go to training for NetApp again, however I’ll recommend that a different company provide the training for me and my coworkers, I don’t want to be associated with a training organization that inadvertently makes available illegal software, even accidentally, to students. It’s not as if there aren’t a host of virtualization options out there that are zero cost, to include VMware server.