The pain points that traditional non-virtualised IT infrastructures have are many and varied. Here are five common ones.
- Poor utilization. Servers are grossly underutilized, and storage is over provisioned on each server.
- High management overhead due to physical server proliferation. Networking devices also require individual management.
- Physical hardware can often fail without warning and this gives unplanned service outages. Hard drives and cooling fans are especially vulnerable.
- The need for service isolation and therefore dedicated hardware means that new service requests have long lead times while procurement and provisioning occurs.
- Physical hardware often has forced refresh cycles due to warranty cover. Vendor lock in can also occur to mitigate risk of switching.
The Business Benefits
Virtualization provides many benefits to the Business that extend beyond the IT department. A sample of these are presented below.
- The Business gets a service from IT that is more agile in responding to changing needs and a service provision that has better availability.
- Capital investment in IT is better utilised and operating overheads are reduced.
- The business can plan for disaster recovery and continuity much more easily as IT services are abstracted from underlying hardware, and can be moved easily if required.
- New projects that benefit the Business can be initiated more often and delivered more quickly.
- A solid foundation on which to build and adopt new IT paradigms as they emerge, such as those based on hybrid Cloud Computing.
IT gets many benefits from the use of Virtualised infrastructure across all aspects of IT operations. Five examples are outlined below.
- Management is simplified on servers, storage and networks. The virtual infrastructure can be monitored and configured via centralised tools.
- The available infrastructure is better utilised and downtime can be planned and executed without service disruption.
- Simplifies the adherence to corporate regulations and information governance rules. Also makes data security, backups and disaster recovery easier.
- Requests from the Business for new user provision, service changes, or new service deployments, can be actioned much more quickly.
- Helps make IT an enabler that contributes to the success of the business and not just be a cost centre seen as a drain on resources.
Agile Data Center Benefits
Business and IT built around Agile Data Centers with clear benefits for:
- Federated Application Support
- East West traffic Conflict
- Hybrid Cloud Environment
- Quicker TTM (time to market)
- Improved QoE (quality of experience)
- Flexible and Elastic capabilities
- Interoperability & Integration across Applications and Networks
- Optimized and Automated Application Delivery
- Application Performance
- New Application Delivery
- Provisioning of Applications and Services
- Deployment (development to testing to production)
- Application Delivery as a Service (ADaaS)