Virtualization and Cloud Computing: How They Go Together

Over 70 percent of companies use virtualization for some aspect of the business. Virtualization and cloud computing each have individual benefits, but companies that really want to take full advantage of the technologies may consider coupling them.

A steady growth in the popularity of virtualization and confidence in the abilities of cloud computing make these techniques worth giving a second look.

The Benefits of Virtualization and Cloud Computing

A brief overview of the benefits of virtualization and cloud computing as individual technologies can provide insight into the advantages of using them together.

Virtualization offers benefits including the following:

· Reduced server costs. Virtualization reduces the cost of maintaining a server by cutting down on the amount of equipment needed and reducing the need for maintenance.

· Faster disaster recovery. The backups made of the virtual server allow a business to get back up and running faster after a disaster.

· Support services. Virtualization often comes with IT support.

Cloud computing offers benefits including the following:

· Cost-efficiency. Companies are able to choose different storage capacities based on their needs. These options can be easily changed in the event that storage needs expand.

· Off-site recovery. Cloud computing stores files virtually. Important files are backed up by being stored remotely.

· Easy access. Employees can access files from anywhere. This opens up opportunities for travelling professionals and people who want the flexibility to work from home.

How To Make Virtualization and Cloud Computing Work Together for You

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Your business can get the most out of both of these technologies by using them together. Server virtualization is often the first step that a company takes when moving files to the cloud. This process cuts down on the physical equipment that a business needs by allowing multiple servers to run on one machine. Cloud computing similarly cuts down on the physical storage needs of a business. Both of these techniques for storing files and running the business network offer a high level of efficiency, speed and support.

This is just one example of how virtualization and cloud computing go together. Here are some more ways that the two complement each other:

· Pairing virtualization and cloud computing is the most efficient way to stretch your company’s IT budget. The storage capacity offered by cloud computing can be customized to meet your needs. You’re not paying for storage that you won’t use. You have the option to expand the capacity each month if needed, and server virtualization offers the flexibility to allow multiple users to access the data stored on the cloud as needed.

· Companies that have fluctuating storage needs can compensate with cloud computing. Your business is limited in storage capacity when you opt for physical methods of storage, but cloud computing gives you the option to increase capacity as needed. Some companies that offer cloud storage are willing to work with their clients to adjust storage capacity at certain times. You have the opportunity to have your storage temporarily increased to keep the costs of storage controlled.

· Virtualization separates hardware from software. Cloud computing cannot be possible if software is not separated from the physical hardware that is it associated with, so it is essential for virtualization to make this software available for remote storage and access.

· Server virtualization and cloud computing make it possible for employees to stay productive when they can’t make it to the office. If your company is missing out on employing top talent because of your office location, you need to invest in virtualization and cloud computing. Flexible working options that allow employees to work from home part or all of the time can attract the best people. You’ll even benefit by allowing employees to continue to work when weather keeps them from commuting to the office. A more efficient, productive workplace is the end result.

· Virtualization makes encapsulation of applications possible, and cloud computing makes it easy for all users to access these applications as necessary. Users do not have to understand the complexities of encapsulation to identify and use these applications.

Virtualization and cloud computing can be integrated to make the most of each of the technologies. Server virtualization is a more costly process that will require planning and investment, but the benefits of the process make it worth the initial outlay for many companies. Cloud computing is typically a more cost-effective method of storing files as compared to the alternatives, and implementing both virtualization and cloud computing at the same time allows a business to move forward to a more efficient future.

Matt Smith works for Dell and has a passion for learning and writing about technology. Outside of work he enjoys entrepreneurship, being with his family, and the outdoors.


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