Virtualization is generating a lot of buzz in IT circles these days because it promises to dramatically change the way many companies manage and operate their IT infrastructure. Virtualization is a broad term that covers the creation of virtual computing resources—such as storage, the network, or even an entire machine. For example, using virtualization you can create virtual machines on one computer, each running its own operating system.
According to research from the Yankee Group, 26% of medium businesses (100-499 employees) and 43% of enterprises (500+ employees) are using server virtualization today, and within 24 months, the percentage for medium-sized businesses is expected to increase to 69%. Among small businesses (20-99 employees), 23% are using server virtualization in production servers, and 8% of very small businesses (2-19 employees) are following suit.
Here are some examples of how you can take advantage of virtualization:
- Reduce capex and opex. If you run a fair-sized organization with multiple servers, you can reduce your capital expenditures for new equipment or upgrades by purchasing a smaller number of machines and running your server workload off of them. Over time, this will reduce operating expenses because you’ll have fewer machines to maintain, less power and space consumed, and more machines more fully utilized.
- A cost-effective way to keep IT running. Some virtualization solutions include features that allow virtual machines to quickly recover in case of disaster or application downtime. Virtual machine loads can be transferred in real-time from one physical machine to another. This means that your accounting application or warehouse management system will always run even if the original machine it’s installed on goes down – if it’s installed on a virtual machine that can intelligently transfer the application to a standby system.
- Test multiple types of machines and run multiple applications on different operating systems. With machine virtualization, you can run multiple operating systems on a single PC. Thinking of running Windows 7 but are afraid some applications might not run properly on it? Use virtualization to run Windows XP within Windows 7. Want to use a Mac but your email is tied to Outlook? No problem! Buy a Mac, and use third party software to run Windows inside it.
Curious about virtualization and how it can help your business? Contact us today to explore ways that virtualization can increase your efficiency and lower your costs.