Cloud Explained: What is Virtualization?

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Virtualization is not a new technology; it was invented in the 1960s and widely adopted in the early 2000s. As it follows from the name, virtualization refers to creating a virtual resource, such as a server, desktop, operating system, file, storage, or network. Virtualization uses special software called hypervisors that makes one physical computer act and perform like many computers. The main goal of virtualization is to increase scalability and manage workload more efficiently.

How does it work?

Hypervisors installed directly on the hardware take your physical resources and divide them up so that virtual environments can use them. Resources are partitioned as needed from the physical environment to the many virtual environments. Users interact with and run computations within the virtual environment (typically called a guest machine or virtual machine)—the virtual machine functions as a single data file. It can be moved and opened from one computer to another and would work the same.

What are the types of virtualization?

Virtualization can be categorized into different layers: desktop, server, file, storage, and network. Each layer of virtualization has its own set of advantages and complexities.

What are the benefits of virtualization?

1. Cost and time efficiency. Virtualization allows to running of many servers on one physical server, provides no-cost deployment and power efficiency. On top of this, you save time on IT services like software updates.

2. Easy upgrades and scalability. With virtualization, you can upgrade your virtual machines in just one click and use as many resources as you need.

3. Reliable disaster recovery. Virtual machines are files, so not just data stored on them can be backed up, but the entire system.

4. Full resource utilization. Virtualization helps to optimize resources and get the most from the existing physical hardware.

5. Increased security. All virtual instances can be easily monitored and isolated.

What do virtualization and cloud computing have in common?

Although they’re both emerging technologies, virtualization and cloud computing are not interchangeable, there is software that makes computing environments independent of physical infrastructure at the core of virtualization. In contrast, cloud computing is a service that delivers shared computing resources via the Internet.

Quite often, organizations start with virtualizing their servers and later move to cloud solutions for better agility and extended opportunities. However, deploying virtualization technology requires careful planning and skilled technical experts. Our professionals will provide you comprehensive information to navigate through modern IT solutions.

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