Server Virtualization Gains Ground

The technology's applications and options are increasing as companies pursue its flexibility, security and reduced cost.

The list of server virtualization applications and vendors is growing. And its no wonder. Server virtualization allows companies to reduce costs and improve system utilization and provides a measure of flexibility and security when testing new applications and migrating old ones.

The server virtualization model can be used to satisfy a variety of needs. Server virtualization applications fit well in software development and testing environments, for example, and they are a good fit for companies planning legacy application migrations. Server virtualization also can allow sites to create a flexible environment for quick rollbacks when the need arises.

VMware Inc., recently acquired by EMC Corp., has been at the forefront of server virtualization in the Wintel space and has a strong portfolio of software products for server virtualization using x86 server systems. Microsoft Corp. is also entering the server virtualization space with the upcoming release of its Microsoft Virtual Server, which leverages Windows Server 2003.

Vendors are scrambling to meet the needs of customers with IT consolidation plans. Hewlett-Packard Co.s Adaptive Enterprise, Sun Microsystems Inc.s N1 and IBMs on-demand initiatives all aim to provide a comprehensive IT virtualization strategy, providing a gamut of business services, server hardware and system management software.

Dell Inc. just this week was expected to announce a strategic partnership with VMware. Dell will offer server virtualization packages across its PowerEdge server and Dell/ EMC CX storage lines with VMwares VirtualCenter and ESX Server.

Technical Analyst Francis Chu can be reached at [email protected].

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