The Rebirth Of Virtualization

The technology offers companies the ability to do more with less -- and by "less" I don't mean slashing headcount.

December 13, 2004

2 Min Read
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It's so refreshing to hear of companies that are planning to do more with less, and by "less" they don't mean slashing headcount. Of course, handing out pink slips is one way to reduce costs, but often, that method increases work for the survivors, and certainly decreases the respect for the company the remaining employees have for the company. You're not likely to see a real boost in morale as you ship off employees to the unemployment office.

Hence the rebirth of virtualization. The technology divvies up the resources of a computer, that could be done through hardware and software partitioning, or through total machine simulation, although those are just two examples of methods used; there are myriad others. Virtual machines are used to consolidate the workloads of a number of underutilized servers to fewer machines. Virtualization is one way an increasing number of companies are able to reduce costs, gain floor space and increase productivity. It's a simple metric: Push costs down by pulling up utilization up. According to Nick Vanderzweep, director of virtualization and utility computing at Hewlett Packard, the typical data center uses only some 15 percent of its capacity. You don't need to be a business whiz to know that's crazy.

If you want to learn more about virtualization and how it could reap rewards for your company, check out Virtual Reality: Boost Productivity Now.The writer also discusses how fewer servers use less power (which equals cost savings), how virtualization simplifies IT planning (which equals time savings) and how growing bandwidth demands are met efficiently (which equals productivity gains)

Of course, virtualization also has a very real place in the world of backup and data recovery. IBM, for example, is developing hardware and IT services for its consulting business that can back up data and "virtualize" computers and disks in pools to handle the most demanding work environments. For information on recovery and specifically on storage, see, Embracing Storage.

VMware, which was bought last year by EMC for $635 million, has certainly benefitted from the virtualization trend. Check out The Virtual Vanguard for more on VMware and its approach.Are you using virtualization? Has it boosted your productivity? Even better, has it saved your company money without having to slash headcount? Let me know.

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