The downsides to server virtualization

Virtualising and consolidating servers can bring multiple benefits to corporate data centres: smaller server footprints, lower heating and cooling costs, less cabling and more efficient management of resources. But there are downsides to consolidating and virtualising servers that companies need to quantify before jumping on the consolidation band wagon.

Software Licensing. Larger servers include more CPUs that each has more processing power. However this can translate into increased software licensing costs. I just spoke to one company that found out too late that their software licensing costs were tied to the number of CPUs and their increased processing power in their new hardware. This surprise offset many of the financial benefits that consolidation was supposed to provide and may even negate them.

Complexity. "One physical server = one application" is an equation that anyone can understand and manage. However consolidation changes the equation to "One physical server = X number of applications and/or operating systems". This makes consolidated environments as complex as having hundreds of servers each supporting its own application. As companies consolidate, they need to ensure that they have processes in place that manage the sharing of server processors, memory and network bandwidth.

Single Point of Failure. No company likes to contemplate the possibility human error. But pull the wrong cable, flip the wrong switch or "fat finger" an entry and suddenly putting all of your eggs in one basket does not seem like such a great idea. Robust disaster recovery plan and server configurations that facilitate fast, easy failovers should be considered mandatory.

Server virtualisation and consolidations clearly bring key cost savings and environmental benefits to corporate data centres. But it is equally important to understand what pitfalls that server virtualisation and consolidations introduce so companies can avoid falling into them.

Jerome Wendt is the president and lead analyst at DCIG Inc. You may read his blogs at www.dciginc.com.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jerome Wendt

Computerworld
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?