If you were to walk into a data center, the first thing you’d likely notice is the countless rows of machines that line the facility. These machines are servers, computers that are dedicated to managing network resources. With servers, services like cloud computing environments and cloud storage can exist.
As wonderful as servers are, they come with some glaring caveats, namely the cost of hardware and the space they take up. Due to these limitations, it’s not realistic to dedicate an entire server to every client who needs one. However, with the help of virtualization technologies, a single server can be turned into multiple virtual servers.
The Advantages of Virtualizing Servers
Server virtualization is a term that refers to converting a single physical server into multiple virtual servers. How this is done is that virtualization software partitions (or divides) the physical server into several independent virtual servers that run the same copy of the operating system (OS). This innovation has been revolutionary for data centers, as virtualization software allows administrators to essentially multiply their available computing environments.
There are plenty of other benefits to virtual hardware, but here are a few of the top advantages.
Reduced Hardware Costs
Data centers contain numerous physical servers that are dedicated to handling the workload from a network. This hardware is expensive, so if you don’t need every server in the facility, that means you’re wasting money on hardware resources, power, cooling, and maintenance. Virtualization allows you to reduce the number of physical servers you need to run your business.
Installing a physical server is a long, arduous, and expensive process. First, you have to order the server, followed by waiting for the hardware to arrive. Then you’ll have to wait for the operating system and applications to install before finally being able to use it—not to mention that you’ll also need to purchase racks and cables for the device. Server virtualization allows you to clone a virtual machine within minutes without costs.
Because each physical server takes up a certain amount of space, there are only so many you can own. That number is directly dependent on your data center’s capacity. This isn’t as much of an issue with virtual machines, however. Although they still need a physical server to be on, virtual environments only take up virtual space. This means you can multiply the number of available servers you have without needing to create extra space.
Reduced Energy Costs
Physical servers produce a lot of heat, and if they get too hot, they don’t work effectively. To prevent overheating, servers need to be cooled. Since virtual servers reduce how many physical servers you need, you won’t have to spend as much on cooling services. A lower number of servers also means there are fewer machines that need power.
Simplified Disaster Recovery
The greatest benefit of server virtualization is convenience. The convenience of this technology presents itself in various ways, one of the most important being that it improves disaster recovery. A virtual machine can be moved quickly from one server to another. Backing up data can also be done quickly, as a company can create a replication of the virtual server they’re currently using.
Having fewer servers in your data center means your IT staff will need to do more with less. This leads to admins who are more agile and efficient. It also means there are fewer servers to maintain and manage. This grants your IT staff time to focus on other tasks.
No More Server Sprawl
One of the common issues with physical servers is server sprawl. Before server virtualization existed, administrators would have to over-allocate server resources to meet demand. Since server virtualization creates multiple virtual servers within a single server, admins are no longer forced to over-allocate resources.
Stability Networks is Your Managed Server Solution
When it comes to managed server solutions, no one beats Stability Networks. Our team of highly experienced technicians will monitor, maintain, and keep the data in your server safe and secure. If you would like to learn more about our comprehensive server management solutions or our other services, give us a call today!