Virtualisation To Increase Issues Challenging Infrastructure, Operations Through 2015

According to Gartner, IT organisations are approaching server virtualisation as a cost-saving measure, and it is saving money.

hidden September 27, 2010 15:56:39 IST
Virtualisation To Increase Issues Challenging Infrastructure, Operations Through 2015

According to Gartner, more than 80 percent of enterprises now have a virtualisation program or project, but only 25 percent of all server workloads will be in a virtual machine (VM) by year-end 2010. Many IT leaders believe that they have virtualised their x86 servers, but Gartner said they have to plan for two to three times the growth of virtualisation in the portfolio.

"Virtualisation will continue as the highest-impact issue challenging infrastructure and operations through 2015, changing how you manage, how and what you buy, how you deploy, how you plan and how you charge," said Philip Dawson, Research Vice President, Gartner. "Virtualisation now drives efficient IT from all angles, including data centre design, platform updates, and application and infrastructure modernisation, as well as traditional and new delivery models, such as infrastructure utility and cloud computing. However, virtualisation does take investment; the savings are not a given."

"As virtualisation matures, the next 'big thing' will be automating the composition and management of the virtualised resources. Storage has already been virtualised, but primarily within the scope of individual vendor architectures. Networking is also virtualised, and the next challenge is server virtualisation," said Dawson.

Gartner estimates that approximately 90 percent of the server market is composed of x86 architecture servers, but based on a traditional model of one application per server, roughly 80 to 90 percent of the x86 computing capacity is unused at any time. Virtualisation promises to unlock much of this underutilised capacity. As such, many IT organisations are approaching server virtualisation as a cost-saving measure, and it is saving money. However, organisations that have a mature server virtualisation deployment in place are leveraging virtualisation for much more: faster deployments, reduced downtime, disaster recovery, variable usage accounting and usage chargeback, holistic capacity planning and more.

"HVDs are poised to undergo explosive growth, and enterprises are anticipating the flexibility and other benefits that these devices will bring. HVDs provide end-user flexibility, efficiency, energy savings and other benefits, enabling administrators to manage desktops from a centralised location and end users to access their desktops from machines in any location," said Dawson. "However, enterprises need to understand the strain this technology can place on their data centre infrastructures and operations, especially when thousands of employees use this platform type."

Gartner analysts said virtualised licensing continues to present a major stumbling block to widespread adoption of virtualisation. As vendors change their software pricing and associated license provisions to accommodate virtual use, negotiators must plan to spend an increased amount of time per contract to understand the effect of such changes on planned software use. Gartner believes that organisations that do not diligently monitor the ways each vendor is responding to virtual use issues are likely to experience significantly increased costs and the unintended impairment of their current license rights.

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