Virtualization issues to consider
OS virtualization issues to consider
Licensing Multiple OS and application instances mean multiple licenses and license fees. Software vendors are beginning to take virtualization into account in their licensing schemes, but youll need to ensure that youre entitled to run the number and types of instances youre deploying. Open-source software, with its permissive licensing, offers a good way to avoid licensing troubles.
Performance Virtualization carries with it additional performance overhead. Administrators must make sure that their virtually deployed services have enough horsepower available to take care of business.
Management Having fewer physical boxes to care for is a management boon, but virtualized OS and application instances require their own separate software updatesa task that grows in complexity when youre dealing with different OSes and OS versions. Make sure your system management toolbox is in order before launching into a virtualization project.
Compatibility Virtualization is great for running applications with conflicting library or kernel requirements side by side, but most applications arent designed with virtualized hardware in mind. Conduct testing to make sure that your software behaves as expected when its deployed in a virtual environment.
Implementation There seem to be more virtualization options now than ever, but some of the options, particularly the open-source ones, require significant tweaking to get up and running properly. Evaluate the quality of the documentation and support resourceswhether theyre commercial or community-providedbefore deploying any systems to production, but keep your eyes open for new developments.
Senior Analyst Jason Brooks can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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