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Virtualisation is the key to greater efficiency

September 7, 2009 • Features

Jim Holland, Axiz Product Manager: HP ESG, says that virtualisation in the data centre has become one of the most widespread IT trends around. Efficiency and cost savings are at the heart of the technology’s proliferation and its potential is undeniable.

“With energy costs continuing to escalate, along with ever-increasing reliance on IP-based networks to power a myriad of new applications, data centres are coming under unprecedented operational scrutiny. IT managers are under pressure to limit the capital expense of additional equipment, simplify network operations and ensure maximum efficiencies that contribute to ‘green’ energy reduction efforts.”

The urgency of these cost, performance and environmental concerns is driving virtualisation into prominence. By breaking down barriers across servers or networking equipment, unused capacity can be identified and then pooled together through virtualisation to harness the excess resources of many separate elements to perform as one.

Virtualisation can also improve operational performance, ensure business continuity and allow organisations to do more with less, Holland says. Virtualisation facilitates the creation of utility computing environments in which resources are dynamically shared across services. This further reduces the number of physical resources, while also improving utilisation and business agility.

Creating a virtualised environment is, however, not a trivial undertaking. It requires in-depth planning to deliver optimal results that meet expectations. A careful transition is vital to ensuring that the virtualisation of the environment does not disrupt business operations, and the ability to monitor the environment must not be neglected. Finally, a mechanism for continuous improvement should be implemented.

In conclusion, Holland says that it is important to bear in mind that as the world becomes greener so will the data centre. “Everyone is trying to reduce power consumption in the data centre, which has its benefits on both the bottom line and the planet. Companies will be looking to minimise their footprint, which will probably lead to the continued increase in technologies like virtualisation. Businesses will also look for applications that streamline operations for greater efficiency.”

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