IT Administrators Have to Show Where the Savings Are
Gartner finds that effective use of virtualization can reduce server energy consumption by as much as 82 percent and floor space by as much as 86 percent. Laczynski agreed with Gartner's numbers. However, he added, "Without effective management of cloud and virtualization technology, ROI is difficult to realize and even harder to measure."Those elements, combined with power savings and footprint reductions, can equal big savings. However, virtualization has a dark side. One myth, according to Ramanathan, is that that virtualization makes management easier-a perception fueled by the fact that there are fewer physical servers to monitor. In actuality, management becomes more complicated since virtualization reduces the physical footprint but increases the number of operating systems and applications that have to be managed. What's more, a lot of changes in a virtualized environment, and the tools designed to help monitor and manage physical infrastructures, are ill-equipped to deal with the needs of virtualized infrastructures.
For his part, Ramanathan claims that Gartner's numbers are only the tip of the iceberg. He believes that an effectively managed virtualization deployment offers additional savings in the form of administrative overhead since management tools enable rapid deployment and repeatability, enhance conflict resolution, improve use of resources and speed consolidation.