Answering the 4 Most Common Questions about Virtualization

More businesses are interested in virtualization today than ever before. Across any industry, there is a handful of common questions business owners need answered before considering virtualization. These questions relate to both server infrastructures in general as well as how virtualization can be beneficial.

What is involved in Maintaining Server Infrastructure?

It is common for virtualization to be discussed within the parameters of making server infrastructure maintenance easier. To understand how it accomplishes this, business owners must first understand what goes into the server infrastructure maintenance process. In general, it can be broken down into two basic categories – hardware and software.

The hardware maintenance is tied primarily to the physical servers, storage, and network infrastructure. It includes everything from cleaning vents and fans to running hardware diagnostics. It also encompasses replacing inefficient components and deploying new servers as needed. On the software side, regular maintenance activities include updates, patches, application management, setting up user access, data backup, and data restoration. Both hardware and software requires periodic maintenance as well as significant time dedicated to deployment and repair.

How Does Virtualization Simplify Server Management?

Virtualization gives IT staff the ability to simplify server management in a variety of different ways. All of these strategies lead to lower costs and less time dedicated to regular maintenance activities without compromising server stability. The first benefit of virtualization is routine tasks require significantly less overall time and effort. Maintaining, updating, and upgrading virtual machines can be almost entirely automated. Plus, virtualization minimizes the number of physical servers a business must keep online. As a result, IT staff will have fewer physical servers to manually maintain.

How Does Virtualization Create a More Flexible IT Environment?

Other common questions surrounding virtualization is how it can help businesses create a more flexible IT environment. Virtualization allows multiple virtual machines to operate on a single server. This makes it easier to create, activate, or decommission a virtual machine at any point in time. The only constraint businesses must consider is how many virtual machines can run simultaneously on a single server. The number of available virtual machines is based on the availability of physical resources on the server.

How Does Virtualization Minimize Risk?

Virtualization is often adopted by businesses as a method of risk minimization. This is accomplished in a variety of ways.

· New applications can be tested on a virtual machine before deployment

· Virtual machines are isolated from one another so critical problems affecting one virtual machine will not affect the entire server

· Testing, deploying, updating, and maintaining virtual machines does not interfere with day-to-day operations which creates a more stable server environment

· New virtual machines can be created on the fly utilizing master templates or mirroring previously created virtual machines

· Virtualization creates a built-in redundancy for maximum data protection and faster disaster recovery

· And having fewer servers operate simultaneously necessarily means less opportunity for hardware failure.

While the underlying virtualization technology has been stable for some time, the possible uses of virtual machines continue to evolve. While there will be questions surrounding the use of virtual machines far into the foreseeable future, even a basic understanding of this technology provides valuable insight into the benefits it offers.

Darren Lobb is well versed in the areas of virtualization, internet security and more. He aims to educate his readers about internet security threats and their solutions. Using such tools  as a secure VPN for your tablets, mobile devices, computer, etc. users can protect themselves and their privacy on the internet.