In our marketing meeting this week, we had a short conversation about virtualization, which made me realize we had not discussed the benefits of virtualization on the blog. So, here goes.
Remember the days when procuring 30 servers meant ordering 30 servers and racks, placing them into the server room, plugging them in, and setting them up?
It seems quaint and old-timey now, doesn’t it?
Today we know that using a virtual environment allows you to have multiple virtual resources on one physical server. When software is executed on these virtual machines, it is separated from the underlying hardware resources. In short, it emulates a server that acts like a real (physical) server.
So, why should you care? Here are a few reasons:
The benefits of virtualization are cost-cutting. First, your power and cooling costs will go down. Then you’ll need less equipment, space, and licenses. You’ll save on memory, storage, and computing power.
Time-saving- The other plus to virtualization is that IT folks save time when it comes to setting up servers. Cloning allows new initiatives to be launched quicker and most straightforwardly. This means you’ll hear a lot less “no” from IT.
Less reliance on vendors- Virtualization allows you to move to a different vendor quickly, so you are not “held hostage” in a lively pricing negotiation.
Increased uptime- Any CIO will tell you another compelling reason for virtualizing is it's much easier to recover from an outage or disaster. Virtual machines can be rebuilt quickly if you are concerned about cyber security. Generally, it only takes minutes to spin up a new server. It is also easier to move a virtual machine from across the server room to across the country. Plus, there’s no need to duplicate hardware for a DR site. In addition, fewer machines equal an easy set-up and working recovery site that can be tested as often as SOPs demand.
Easy migration to the cloud- Virtualizing your servers will make moving things into the cloud easier. Once you have a virtualized data center, you may decide to move to a private cloud environment. And if you wish, ultimately move to a public cloud.
Reduced data center carbon footprint- When you can cut down on the number of physical servers you’re using, it’ll reduce the amount of power being consumed. It will also reduce expenses for the business, and that money can be reinvested elsewhere.
Finally, I’ve often heard that CFOs are conditioned to prefer the transparency of costs of a virtual environment, so please save that for your next “going over the budget” conversation :)