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Users Talk Virtual Troubles
NEW YORK -- Despite the growing popularity of virtualization, many users are still struggling with lengthy deployment cycles and security issues related to the technology. This was the message from CIOs and IT managers at a conference here today. (See IDC Reports on Virtualization.)
Speaking during a keynote, John Humphreys, program director at analyst firm IDC, warned that virtualization brings a unique set of challenges to the data center. "It changes your processes," he explained. "[Its about] how much time, effort and energy it takes to transform your organization."
Attendees agreed that this is a major hurdle in the path of their virtualization strategies. "Time is definitely a major concern of ours," said Jim Steinmark, director of architecture and engineering at Fidelity Investments. "One of the big challenges is the time that it is taking to get people to accept virtualization as a production-ready technology," added the exec, who uses VMware, Citrix, and SoftGrid within his infrastructure.
For this reason, Steinmark estimates that it probably takes 40 to 50 percent longer to get an application deployed on virtual machines than it would on physical servers. A complex virtual application shared by a number of different users, he said, could easily take a year to deploy.
On the plus side, the exec told Byte and Switch that his firm can deploy updates to his virtual software much faster than he would have been able to with traditional software running on a physical server.
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