We are currently living in an era where everything is moving to the digital platform. Nowadays, there are several technological revolutions happening in the industry, and all of which are making businesses more accurate, effective, efficient, and productive. And in this blog post, we are going to talk about one such technological revolution or application that is the IT virtualization.
IT virtualization is simply the creation of virtual versions of IT infrastructure instead of the physical version. Due to the increasing digitization, IT virtualization has become an essential part of every business. But many people link virtualization to virtual machines that are also known as VMs. In this case, a single physical machine hosts virtual machines that are running different operating system implementations. Such type of virtualization is not unique as cases like a single IBM Power System hosting various VMs through windows minimizes the need for hardware systems in the data center.
But if you think that virtualization is only limited to virtual machines, then you are making a big mistake. You should know that virtualization is used in different functions of a Data Center, and there are some parts of DC where the use of virtualization may even surprise you.
So, let’s explore the world of IT Virtualization Projects and unearth its root while understanding its benefits.
How did virtualization start?
To unearth the roots of virtualization, we will have to go way back to 1960 when IBM was struggling with its systems. In early 1960, IBM had different types of processing systems, and every generation of the system was very different from its previous version. This made it very difficult for the users to adjust according to the changing needs and system requirements of different IBM systems. In addition to this, computers were confined to do one thing at a time and to do tasks, the users needed to run batches. But because of the full range of hardware requirements, IBM began working on an S/360 mainframe system.
Then came the Multiple Access Computer from MIT, and that acted as a wakeup call for IBM. In its response, IBM came up with CP-40, which later became the basis of virtualization. The traditional approach of time-sharing computers paved a new way of minimizing hardware requirements, and that’s how virtualization projects came into the picture.
How does virtualization work?
We will understand virtualization through its most common form that is operating system-level virtualization. Through operating system level virtualization, the user can run multiple operating systems on a single piece of hardware. This is why the concept of virtualization involves separating the physical hardware from the software by emulating hardware using the software. And when a completely different type of OS is operated on the top of the primary OS system, then it is known as virtual machines.
A Virtual machine is a data file present on the physical computer that can be easily shifted to another computer system as a standard data file. But it is essential to know that computers in the virtual environment use two different types of file structures. One of these file structures defines the hardware, and the other defines the hard drive. The virtualization software offers coaching technology that is used to cache changes to the virtual hardware. The same virtualization software is more popularly known as a hypervisor.
What are the different types of virtualization?
Server Virtualization – In the server virtualization technology, the user can enable multiple operating systems to run on a single physical server. This physical server acts as a highly efficient virtual machine. Some of the best advantages of server virtualization are minimized cost, high uptime, and increased productivity.
Network Virtualization – It completely reproduces the physical network, that allows applications to run on a virtual network, just like they run on physical interfaces. But by running applications on virtual networks through network virtualization, the user can harness the benefits of increased operational efficiency and simplified workflow.
Desktop Virtualization – In this type of virtualization, the desktop environment is separated from the physical device, and then it is configured as a virtual desktop infrastructure. By implementing desktop virtualization, the user can access all the personal files and applications from any PC. This means that the user can work from anywhere without being confined to the office desktop.
Storage Virtualization – This is one of the most natural forms of virtualization, and it is cost-effective as well. Economic storage virtualization involves bringing physical hard drives into one cluster. If you are planning for disaster recovery, storage virtualization can prove to be the best type of virtualization for you.
Application Virtualization – just like desktop virtualization, applications are virtualized and delivered from server to the end-user device like mobile, tablet, laptop, and desktop. Through application virtualization, users can work on their applications without the need for logging to their office desktop. Application virtualization is more prevalent among those businesses that require mobility in accessing business applications.
What are the benefits of virtualization?
Effective backup and disaster recovery- One of the most significant advantages of virtualization is the secure backup and disaster recovery systems. If a natural or human made disaster hits your business, then the complete data loss will wreak havoc on your business. But through virtualization, you can recover your data without any delay, and words like total data loss will become meaningless.
Reduced Cost – Another significant advantage of virtualization is reduced cost. You will be surprised to know that more than 40 percent of the IT budget is spent on hardware, but you can reduce this spending by opting for virtualization.
Improved Business Continuity – Downtime is the worst enemy of any business, and virtualization minimizes downtime to a great extent. By not being dependent on your hardware, you can improve business continuity and work without any interruption.
Virtualization is undoubtedly one of the biggest technological revolutions that completely changed the way businesses used to work. Through virtualization, companies can spend less and improve productivity. But you should always choose the right type of virtualization for your business according to your specific needs.