This is a question that may businesses have asked themselves in recent years, but with the revolution of the cloud and a strong focus on reducing costs, virtualisation has become a key technology that is a must for the growing enterprise, just as much as it is becoming a necessity for the small and medium sized business to consider as part of their business strategy.
Initially, the idea of virtualisation was sold on the basis of how much power and rack space can be saved, the reduction in air conditioning costs and being able to use more resources for less cost. But the use of the cloud, and a strong change in the economy, has meant a shift towards being more flexible and secure as well as the all-important factor of being more resilient and highly available for these “always-on” users.
In the world of on-demand users and the need to ramp up and ramp down resources at will, how would you be able to do this with physical servers? The answer is, with great difficulty. With virtualisation, gone are the days of having to buy physical servers for only one purpose or resource, waiting for it to be delivered, installing the operating system and applications and then connecting it all up to the network. When IT can provision new virtual servers (minutes to hours) with the same specifications as a physical one (days to weeks) in a fraction of the time, you can see why on that basis alone there is a great argument for why most businesses should go for virtualisation.
So, how has virtualisation been a key driver behind the growth of cloud? Virtualisation is the foundation for cloud! Without the agility, flexibility and resilience of virtualisation, the very basis for cloud services would be almost impossible to achieve at great scale.
As you can tell, I am a strong believer in virtualisation. Playing a major part of my IT career over the years, I have worked in great depth with VMware vSphere and all its components and in recent times, working quite exclusively with Hyper-V 3.0 with the latter being a strong contender in the virtualisation space. Both have their benefits and are both in my opinion great products, with the overall game changer between the two being down to cost now that Microsoft have changed their licensing strategy in Windows Server 2012. More on these comparisons in a later blog or if you are looking for more information for an up and coming project, by all means send me an email and we can go over your options.