In this interview series we will introduce IT Professionals selected for this year’s Dell TechCenter (DTC) Rockstar Program. This program recognizes independent experts, Dell customers and employees for their significant positive impact on Dell TechCenter, blogs and social media when discussing Dell. You can find a list of all our Rockstars here. Our fifth interviewee is Didier Van Hoye.

Dell TechCenter: Can you please explain to folks who are not experts in your area: What is your domain of expertise?

Didier Van Hoye: My main expertise is virtualization and in the Microsoft ecosystems that means Hyper-V & SCVMM. This means that I also have to be well versed in networking, storage and compute. You need to look at the entire stack so we’ve build up a nice skillset over the years in these subjects as well. Next to that I focus on high availability both on premise and in the cloud.

Q: What are the most exciting trends in your area?

A: I’m very interested in how the private cloud / hybrid cloud will work out in terms of longevity & ROI. The speed at which public cloud is evolving and the economies of scale make it a difficult decision for many. I also see an ever increasing challenge in managing it all and many are struggling there more than ever before. The software defined and converged solutions have still to mature more to help out there.

Q: Can you point us to resources you find particularly valuable?

A: Virtualization is a core expertise of mine and as I try to own the stack when building solutions I need info about storage, networking and compute and I do not rely on just a few sources. Being able to search & filter information is paramount. You also need to build a network of peers and crowd source you information needs. On the Dell TechCenter I really appreciate the reference designs. They help to wrap your mind around what is possible. Needless to say the support forums are very worthwhile to search for solutions.

Q: How do you engage with the IT community?

A: I blog at, I communicate on twitter via @workinghardinit, I am present at conferences, take part in web casts and think tanks. I’m also a Microsoft MVP and a member of the Microsoft Extended Experts Team in Belgium.

Q: What are the most cutting edge Dell products – and why?

A: Fluid Cache for SAN looks very promising to me. The fact that you can get the benefits of a lot of the newer flash only solutions integrated in your central SAN with all its benefits just seems very attractive. The positioning & pricing will determine where it will be used but I’d love to see this become main stream. Next to that I love the VRTX form factor.

Q: Didier, thank you so much!